June 2014 marks five years since the publication of the Connecting Communities report into potential opportunities to expand the rail network. This blog will be publishing a set of posts during June to review the progress that has been made to date. This is the twelfth post in the “Five Years On” series.
This post reviews the progress of the Wisbech and Ivanhoe lines.
The March to Wisbech line was proposed with a potential Park and Ride where the route crosses the A47. ATOC expected a train service from Wisbech to Peterborough with reopening costing £12m and a BCR of 1.1.
There has been an ongoing project to reinstate the railway line as a heritage railway. It has established a base at Waldersea.
Cambridgeshire County Council launched a three stage feasibility study in 2012 and the first stage reported in 2013 advising that the route was feasible.
The route gained further financial support in July 2014 when it received LGF support to proceed with the next stage of the feasibility studies.
Leicester to Burton (Ivanhoe)
The Leicester to Burton line was proposed with stations at Kirby Muxloe, Bagworth, Coalville, Ashby-de-la-Zouch, Moira and Gresley (for Swadlincote). The ATOC proposal was to upgrade the existing line to passenger standards with an additional passing loop. The expected costs were £49m with a BCR of 1.3.
Very little progress has been made with the project. The proposal was reviewed in 2008 with the report advising that the BCR value would be 0.4. Local MP’s wrote to Patrick McLoughlin in December 2013 to encourage the DfT to fund a feasibility study into restoring the route.