New Sheffield railway line plans get 'positive' feedback

Plans to revive a long-lost Sheffield railway line have been given a boost following ‘positive’ feedback from transport bosses.

Tuesday, 14th July 2020, 8:23 am
Updated Tuesday, 14th July 2020, 8:23 am

Up to three trains an hour would run on the Don Valley line between Sheffield city centre and Stocksbridge, calling at Deepcar, Oughtibridge, Wadsley Bridge and Neepsend, under proposals to restore passenger services.

Campaigners failed in their initial bid to get funding in May but they still hope to secure a slice of the Government’s £500 million Restoring Your Railway Fund.

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Penistone and Stocksbridge MP Miriam Cates with railways minister Chris Heaton-Harris during his visit to the Don Valley railway line

The project is one of 50 rail restoration schemes across the country vying for money in the latest round of applications, and a decision is expected by the end of summer.

Penistone and Stocksbridge MP Miriam Cates, who is spearheading the scheme along with Sheffield City Region Mayoral Combined Authority and the Don Valley Railway campaign group, remains confident about its chances.

“The feedback we received from the Department for Transport on our bid was positive, and highlighted the potential for significant economic benefits as a result of restoring passenger services on the Don Valley Line.

“We have been asked to provide further details on a few aspects of our bid, and I am working closely with the Sheffield City Region team and the Don Valley Railway Group on our response.

“I am particularly excited about the potential synergy between the Stocksbridge bid and the Barrow Hill Line. The timetable for the next steps is still being determined by the Department for Transport, but our bid continues to progress through the assessment process.”

Plans to reopen stations on the Barrow Hill line between Chesterfield and Sheffield were among 10 projects to be awarded funding in May.

Ms Cates and fellow campaigners believe that strengthens the case for reopening the Stocksbridge route since the two lines could meet at the old Sheffield Victoria railway station, which they want to revive.

The Stocksbridge scheme is one of several Yorkshire schemes in the running for funding, with others including a bid to reopen Heeley and Millhouses railway stations in the Sheaf Valley and to increase capacity at Dore & Totley.