Restoring Your Railway Fund – Applications

Ideas Fund – Applications

The Restoring Your Railway Ideas Fund has inspired many application to enhance the rail network. Applications have included reopening railway lines, adding new railway stations, operating passengers trains on existing freight lines and heritage railways plus the creation of new services on the existing rail network.

At least 110 applications have been made to the Ideas Fund. Sixty bids were made to round 1 and fifty bids were made to round 2.

I have categorised the applications to make it easier to understand the requirement in brief. The information in the public domain regarding some bids has not enabled categorisation to take place.

RAILWAY LINE – involves rebuilding a railway line and adding it to the rail network. It may require new stations and new services to facilitate operations on the new route

RAILWAY STATION – new railway station on the railway network. No additional railway line required to serve it.

SERVICE IMPROVEMENT – enhancing existing services to a railway station by running additional services to that railway station. This may include increasing the frequency or creating a new service.

INFRASTRUCTURE IMPROVEMENT – enhancing the infrastructure of the existing rail network

Round 1 Applications

On 8 September 2020, the Department for Transport shared the full list of applications for round 1 and round 2 of the Ideas Fund

North West

To reinstate Glazebrook Junction to Skelton Junction
To reinstate the Walkden to Bolton line
To introduce an orbital passenger rail route between Stockport and Ashton
To reinstate the Keswick to Penrith Railway
To reinstate the Burscough Curves
To re-double from Oldham Mumps to Grotton Greenfield
To reinstate the Rose Hill (Marple) to Maple Grove Line, Stockport
To reinstate the Bolton-Radcliffe and Bolton to Bury lines
To reinstate the East Didsbury to Stockport line
To reconnect stations in the Rossendale Valley area
To re-double the mid-Cheshire line, Altrincham-Stockport
To repurpose the Warrington to Stockport line
To reinstate the Bury-Heywood-Rochdale lines
To reintroduce passenger services between Clitheroe and Hellifield and explore freight options

North East

To enhance services between Morpeth and Berwick
To reintroduce passenger services to former freight alignment to link existing Metro lines at Cobalt
To open a new station at Gilsland-Tyne Valley Line
To open a new station to serve the village of Belford-Northumberland
To reinstate the Bensham Curve and freight line
To reinstate the Leamside South of Tyne & Wearside Loop


To reinstate the Maldon to Witham line
To reinstate the passing loop between St Albans Abbey and Watford Junction (Abbey Line)

Yorkshire and Humberside

To reinstate the line for Barnsley to Wakefield via Royston – North Midland Railway
To operate regular local passenger services over the Doncaster-Askern line
To reinstate the Wortley Curve
To introduce passenger services between Sheffield and Stocksbridge on freight route
To introduce passenger services on the Barrow Hill line between Sheffield and Chesterfield


To re-open the Stoke-Leek line
To reinstate the Peaks and Dales Railway
To reinstate the rail sidings at the former Ironbridge Power Station
To reinstate the Oswestry to Gobowen line (Cambrian Heritage Railways)
To reinstate pax service on the currently freight only branch line between Stourbridge and Brierly Hill
To re-open Pontrilas station
To re-open stations on the Sutton Park line
To re-open a Tettenhall area station
To open a new station at Galley Common (Nuneaton)
To reinstate pax services on Lichfield-Alrewas-Burton-on-Trent rail line
To open new stations at Foleshill, Coundon Road & Biley/Willenhall
To reinstate Etruria station
To reintroduce passenger services on the Leicester to Burton (Ivanhoe) line
To re-open the Meir station between Stoke-On-Trent and North Staffordshire
To open new stations at Castle Bromwich and Fort Parkway

South West

To reinstate the Helston Railway Link
To double-track majority of Thingly Junction to Bradford Junction
To re-open Stonehouse Bristol Road
To extend the light railway to the Barnstable Branch (Chivenor Braunton)
To extend the Lostwithiel to Carne Point (Fowey) rail line
To restore the Newton Abbot to Heathfield railway link
To re-open the Tavistock-Okehampton line
To reinstate the Cirencester-Kemble line
To re-open the Sharpness branch line
To restore the line to Gravity innovation campus
To reinstate rail access to Devizes via a new station at Lydeway
To re-open the Wellington and Cullompton Railway
To introduce a Westbury Station Hub

South East

To operate Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CAVs) along former rail alignment
To re-open the Lewis to Uckfield & Tunbridge Wells to Eridge/Ashurst – Brighton Main Line
To reinstate the branch lines on the Isle of Wight
To introduce passenger services on the Totton-Fawley (Waterside) line

Successful Round one applications

  • reopening Meir Railway Station between Stoke-On-Trent and North Staffordshire
  • passenger services on the Barrow Hill line between Sheffield and Chesterfield
  • passenger services on the Leicester to Burton (Ivanhoe) line
  • reinstatement of branch lines on the Isle of Wight
  • reinstatement of passing loop between St Albans Abbey and Watford Junction (Abbey Line)
  • reopening of Wellington and Cullompton stations
  • passengers services on the Bury-Heywood-Rochdale lines
  • regular passenger services on the Clitheroe to Hellifield railway line
  • reinstatement of rail access to Devizes via a new station at Lydeway
  • passenger services on the Totton-Fawley (Waterside) line

Round 2 Applications


ProposalCategoryFurther Information
Reopening Stratford-upon-Avon to Honeybourne – Worcester/Oxford Railway Line
RAILWAY LINEMore Information
Increase the number of stopping services at Radcliffe-on-Trent and Bottesford stations on the Poacher line between Grantham and Nottingham
Increased services to Nottingham and Leicester, via Syston and Loughborough from Melton Mowbray
Reconnecting Ashfield communities through the Maid Marian Line


ProposalCategoryFurther Information
Magor and Undy Walkway Station
Restoring services on the Anglesey Central Railway between Gaerwen and Amlwch

South West

[RAILWAY LINE] Introduce a passenger service to Shepton Mallet (Mendip Vale)

[RAILWAY LINE] Reinstate the Radstock railway

[RAILWAY STATION] Open St Anne’s Park station

[RAILWAY LINE] Reopen the Primrose Line – understood to be Kingsbridge branch line in Devon

[SERVICE IMPROVEMENT] Enhance services on the Newquay Line

[SERVICE IMPROVEMENT] Mid Cornwall Metro – enhance services between Falmouth and Truro

[SERVICE IMPROVEMENT] Restoring secondary services on the Great Western main line

[RAILWAY LINE] Reopen Goodrington and Churston Stations

[RAILWAY STATION] New station for Langport and Somerton Area

[RAILWAY STATION] Open Charfield Station

[RAILWAY LINE] Reinstatement of Bodmin-Wadebridge railway and associated work

[RAILWAY LINE] Increased service provision Bodmin General-Bodmin Parkway

[RAILWAY LINE] Ashburton & Buckfastleigh junction railway

[INFRASTRUCTURE IMPROVEMENT] Bristol West capacity enhancement

[RAILWAY LINE] Light railway extension to the Barnstaple Branch (Chivenor Braunton) “TawLink”

Cirencester Community Rail Project – Resotre the rail link between Cirencester and Kemble

To introduce a heritage line and potentially a year-round passenger service between Swanage and Wareham

To improve railway services at Pilning station, as well as to reinstate the footbridge to platform 2

To open a Wantage and Grove Station and associated train service

South East

[RAILWAY LINE] The Arundel Chord

[RAILWAY STATION] Re-opening of Camberwell Station

Unlocking capacity and services through Bramley (Hants)

[RAILWAY LINE] Chinnor Railway Aston Rowant extension

[INFRASTRUCTURE IMPROVEMENT] Carshalton Beeches step-free access

North East

ProposalCategoryFurther Information
Restoring Newcastle to Consett railway line
Railway Line
Reopen the railway station at Ferryhill
Railway Station

North West

The South Fylde Line Passing Loop

[RAILWAY STATION] Reopening Midge Hall Station near Leyland

[RAILWAY STATION] Reopening Golborne Railway Station near Wigan

[RAILWAY STATION] Reopening Kenyon Junction Station near Warrington

[RAILWAY LINE] Reinstatement of the Bolton-Radcliffe / Bolton-Bury line

[RAILWAY STATION] Reinstating Beeston Castle and Tarporley railway station in Cheshire

Re-doubling of the Mid Cheshire Line between Stockport and Altrincham and associated station reopenings

[RAILWAY LINE] Stockport to Ashton Line

Glazebrook Junction to Skelton Junction

[RAILWAY LINE] Reopening the Stockport to Ashton Line and the East Didsbury – Stockport route

Yorkshire and Humber

[RAILWAY LINE] York – Beverley Minsters Line

[RAILWAY LINE] Upper Wensleydale Railway through Hawes

[RAILWAY STATION] Sheaf Valley stations south of Sheffield

Daily railway service on Keighley & Worth Valley Railway

[RAILWAY STATION] Advanced Manufacturing Park station near Rotherham (Waverley) on the Sheffield-Worksop line

South Yorkshire Joint Railway between Rotherham and Worksop

Barton on Humber – Gainsborough service

East of England

ProposalCategoryFurther Information
Reopen Wymondham – Dereham
Railway Line
Reopen Kings Lynn to Hunstanton
Railway Line

Askern (Yorkshire)

Located on the Doncaster to Knottingley line, which is currently used by the Grand Central London – Bradford Interchange train service. The station would be served by a Leeds – Lincoln service. It is supported by Ed Milliband MP.

Source – Latest Updates

Barnsley – Wakefield (Yorkshire)

The North Midland line connecting Barnsley and Wakefield has been sponsored by Dan Jarvis MP

Source – Latest Updates

Methley (Yorkshire)

Located on the railway line between Leeds and Castleford, this proposal is supported by Alec Shelbrooke MP.

Source – Latest Updates

Sheffield – Chesterfield (Barrow Hill) (Yorkshire)

Restoring a passenger service on the Barrow Hill railway line that is currently used by freight services and a small number of passenger services.


Stocksbridge – Sheffield (Yorkshire)

This freight line runs north west of Sheffield through the Don Valley. There are potential connectivity issues at the Sheffield end without a reversal, creation of a new station or connecting into Sheffield Supertram. Application supported by Miriam Cates MP

Source – Latest Updates

Wortley Curve (Yorkshire)

Located west of Leeds, this curve would enable trains from the Calder Valley line to travel towards Wakefield, Sheffield and the East Midlands without reversing at Leeds railway station. Application supported by Rachel Reeves MP.

Source – Latest Updates

York – Beverley (Minsters Line) (Yorkshire)

East Riding of Yorkshire council approved the submission of a bid to restore the railway line between York and Beverley. The sponsoring MP is not known.

Source – Latest Updates

Corby northern service improvement (East Midlands)

Improve the railway services north of Corby railway station towards Melton and Derby. Currently there are four trains timetabled per day north of Corby.


Shanklin – Ventnor (Isle of Wight)

Extend the Island line southwards towards Ventnor. Supported by Bob Seely MP.

Source – Latest Updates

Wooton – Newport (Isle of Wight)

Extend the Isle of Wight Steam Railway to the largest town on the island without a railway connection, Newport. Support by Bob Seely MP.

Source – Latest Updates

Ambergate – Chinley (North West)

Known as the Peak and Dales railway, this line would improve connectivity between Manchester and the East Midlands. Supported by Robert Largan MP (High Peak) and Nigel Mills MP (Amber Valley).

Source – Latest Updates

Burscough Curves (North West)

Boost connectivity between Southport and Preston/Ormskirk by restoring one or both of the Burscough Curves. Supported by Damien Moore MP and Rosie Cooper MP.

Source – Latest Updates

Clitheroe – Hellifield (North West)

Provide an enhanced service about the Sunday’s only Dalesrail service, connecting services on the Ribble Valley with the Settle & Carlisle Railway


Mid Cheshire line (North West)

This submission is for re-doubling of the Mid Cheshire line between Stockport and Altrincham and associated undefined station reopenings. This proposal is sponsored by Mary Robinson MP.


Penrith – Keswick (North West)

Restores the railway line connecting Penrith to Keswick. This has been supported by four MPs, Trudy Harrison MP, Dr Neil Hudson MP, Mark Jenkinson MP and John Stevenson MP.

SourceLatest Updates

Rossendale – Manchester (North West)

Restore regular services between Rawtenstall and Manchester using the East Lancashire Railway. It was backed by Jake Berry MP and Sara Britcliffe MP.

Source – Latest Updates

Silloth – Carlisle (North West)

Silloth is located on the north Cumbrian Coast and is currently bypassed by the Cumbrian Coast line, which runs seven miles inland at this point. Workington MP Mark Jenkinson raised this bid with the Railway Minister in February 2020.

Source – Latest Updates

Skelton Junction line (North West)

Linking the Manchester-Warrington line at Glazebrook with the Stockport line at Timperley, this line would enable the restoration of stations at Cadishead and Partington, plus the relief of the Castlefield corridor. The bid is backed by Kate Green, Graham Brady and Barbara Keeley.

Source – Latest Updates

Stockport – Guide Bridge/Ashton Moss (North West)

Restore a regular service on the railway line that runs through Reddish South and Denton. Two options (possibly bids) with the first being a rail service connecting Stockport to Manchester Victoria. Second option would utilise light rail vehicles and a new chord at the north end of this railway line connecting into the Metrolink network near Ashton-under-Lyne. Supported by Andrew Gwynne MP.

Source – Latest Updates

Brighton Mainline 2 – Kent and Sussex phases (South East)

This proposal would create a new mainline through Uckfield, restoring main line trains to the Uckfield – Lewes corridor and Eridge – Tunbridge Wells. The supporting MP is Maria Caulfield.

Source – Latest Updates

St Albans – Watford Junction capacity enhancement (South East)

Adding additional capacity to the railway line between Watford Junction and St Albans Abbey. This is expected to be a passing loop.


Barnstaple – Braunton (South West)

This proposal is supported by the TawLink campaign, which has backed the development of electric trams on the corridor between Barnstaple and Braunton. It is unknown if an application has been made but the campaign group has reported that they have been encouraged by their local MP Selaine Saxby to apply for funding.

Source (Combe Rail Facebook page screenshot of members magazine) – Latest Updates

Bere Alston – Tavistock (South West)

Restoring the railway line from Bere Alston to Tavistock.

Source – Latest Updates

Cullompton (South West)

Restore a railway station on the railway line between Tiverton Parkway and Exeter.

Source – Latest Updates

Devizes Parkway (South West)

Add a railway station between Pewsey and Westbury. Supporting MP is Danny Kruger

Source – Latest Updates

Hythe – Totton (Waterside line) (South West)

This branchline in Hampshire connected Fawley oil terminal with the national rail network. The supporting MP is not known.

SourceLatest Updates

Lostwithiel – Fowey (South West)

Restoring passenger trains on the freight only line that currently serves Carne Point a few miles short of Fowey.

Source – Latest Updates

Melksham Single Track Capacity Enhancement (South West)

This was raised in papers discussing proposals that Wiltshire Council were progressing. The supporting MP is not known.


Newton Abbot – Bovey Tracey (South West)

Restore the railway line that ran to Heathfield and provide a service into Newton Abbot. Supported by Anne Marie Morris MP

Source – Latest Updates

Wellington (South West)

Restore a railway station on the railway line between Tiverton Parkway and Taunton.

Source – Latest Updates

Westbury 4th Platform (South West)

This was raised in papers discussing proposals that Wiltshire Council were progressing. The supporting MP is not known.


Etruria (West Midlands)

Located approximately one mile north of Stoke-on-Trent railway station, this proposal would replace the stop closed in 2005. This proposal was supported by Stoke-on-Trent Central MP Jo Gideon. It was unsuccessful in round 1

Source – Latest Updates

Meir (West Midlands)

Proposed railway station between Stoke-on-Trent and Uttoxeter, which was successful for funding in round 1.

Source – Latest Updates

Oswestry – Gobowen (West Midlands)

Restore the railway line serving Oswestry. Supported by MPs Owen Paterson, Craig Williams and Simon Baynes.

Source – Latest Updates

Stoke-on-Trent – Leek (West Midlands)

Restoring the railway line connecting Stoke-on-Trent with Leek. Supported by Staffordshire Moorlands MP Karen Bradley.

Source – Latest Updates

Stratford upon Avon – Honeybourne (Shakespeare Line) (West Midlands)

Reconnect Stratford upon Avon and Honeybourne via Long Marston.

SourceLatest Updates

Accelerating Existing Proposals – Applications

There are potential applications lined up or expected to apply for this fund.

Corsham (South West) – Source – Updates

Wilton Parkway (South West) – Source – Updates

Brighton Mainline 2 – Kent and Sussex phases (South East) – Source

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