MPs submit bid to restore Sheffield's Sheaf Valley railway stations

Two Sheffield MPs hoping to restore railway stations along Sheaf Valley have now submitted their bid to the government.

Thursday, 2nd July 2020, 1:02 pm
Updated Tuesday, 7th July 2020, 12:31 pm

Olivia Blake, Sheffield Hallam MP, and Louise Haigh, Sheffield Heeley MP, put a bid in to the government’s £500 million Restoring Your Railways Ideas Fund to reopen stations in Millhouses, on Archer Road, and Heeley, on London Road, expand and improve the station at Dore and Totley and open a new station at Totley Brook.

They said, if successful, the project could have citywide benefits of easing congestion, improving air quality, boosting the economy and improving access to jobs and services.

Ms Blake said: “After Covid-19, we need a just, green recovery. Restoring rail services along the Sheaf Valley – providing greener and more affordable access to transportation – will allow Sheffield to play its part in responding to the climate crisis and reducing air pollution and help create a fairer, greener economy.

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Heeley station just before it opened Credit - Sheffield Local Studies Library - Picture Sheffield

“Restoring rail services to the Sheaf Valley would transform links from South and South West Sheffield to the city centre and Manchester, offer cleaner, greener links to the Peak District, and greatly reduce congestion on busy roads like Abbeydale and Ecclesall Road.”

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It is one of seven bids from the Yorkshire and Humber region for this round of funding.

The previous round saw support for 10 projects across the country, including passenger services on the Barrow Hill line between Sheffield and Chesterfield, via Beighton and Woodhouse.

Olivia Blake MP

There will be a third round of funding in November.

The government is investing the money to try to reverse a huge cut in railway lines in the 1960s.

The cuts are known as the Beeching cuts after Dr Richard Beeching, former chairman of British Railways, whose early 1960s report The Reshaping of British Railways led to the closure of many routes.

If successful, the Department for Transport will provide 75 per cent of costs up to £50,000 to help fund transport and economic studies and create a business case.

Heeley station pre 1902 Credit - Sheffield Local Studies Library -Picture Sheffield

Future funding to develop projects would be subject to agreement of the business case.

Once decided, government officials will contact successful schemes to agree the concept and discuss work towards a study and business case.

A study is the first step in developing more detailed proposals and obtaining funding to deliver projects.

The DfT said unsuccessful applicants will be offered support to develop plans for a later round of funding, or to access funding another way.

Heeley station around 1920s. Credit - Sheffield Local Studies Library - Picture Sheffield

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