Leicestershire County Council (LCC) has just announced that the re-opening of the freight line between Burton and Leicester to passenger has been rejected by LCC as ‘unaffordable’ and has no business case.
Conservative controlled LCC are to rubber stamp a consultant’s report to its Cabinet next week (17th June) to ‘take no further action’ on re-instating the National Forest line.
I am bitterly disappointed that no other options have been considered by the Conservatives, and proves there is no political will at County Hall Glenfield to take traffic off our roads.
Nearby local councils in Nottingham, Birmingham & the Black Country have used former rail lines for new tramway systems. These tramways have proved to be successful, taken traffic off roads and provided a cheaper form of travel for hard up commuters.
Tramways are considerably cheaper to construct and can be used on street to get to the centres of employment and retail facilities. £Billions of taxpayer money is being poured into London and the South East in providing new rail links – but we get nowt.
Alongside the National Forest Line from Burton in Staffordshire through to Leicester there will be considerable growth of housing in the next 20 years. Our roads are not going to be improved enough to take additional traffic from the new homes. An improved rail service or new tramway would go a long way to improve life for both existing & new residents of our towns.
The demand for improved transport links in our towns will not go away and no doubt be an issue in the 2017 County Council elections.