Plans to reopen railway hit the buffers

Plans to reopen railway hit the buffers

Plans to reopen railway hit the buffers

First published in News

A PLAN to reopen a railway that closed almost 50 years ago has hit the buffers.

Transport boss Sean Woodward today formally rejected a proposal to restart a passenger service on the Fawley branch line.

The line was axed In 1966 as a result of savage rail cut backs across the country which followed recommendations made by Dr Richard Beeching.

But a report concluded that the scheme is unlikely to secure the necessary funding – mainly because of the “low demand” for a new rail service.

Making his decision, Cllr Woodward said: "The purpose of the feasibility studies was to work out whether there was actually a viable scheme and if it carried a chance of being delivered.

"And the work that has been carried out shows that the business case was a long way adrift of it being viable.

"It's not that we would like to open a railway line. I would love to open a railway line if the whole thing was viable and stacked up.

"The owner is Network Rail and Network Rail does not support the project and that means we cannot proceed further."

In 2009 the Association of Train Operating Companies (ATOC) suggested the line should be reopened to ease congestion on the A326 and other roads between Southampton and the Waterside.

Costing £17m, the proposal includes new stations at Hythe and Hounsdown.

But a Hampshire County Council report cites the “relatively low level of demand” for a new passenger service on the Waterside which would not justify subsidy or private investment.

The plan had met with opposition among some residents, which included a 439 name petition against it by people living, working and visiting the area.

A big fear among opponents was the impact a revived train line would have on people living next to the line as well as stealing passengers from existing bus service and the historic Hythe ferry.

At a meeting to hear Cllr Woodward's decision on the plan, Marchwood resident Sara Harvey, who started a no campaign, said residents were "absolutely appalled" at the potential threat to the Hythe ferry service.

She said: "The Hythe ferry service is a huge tourist attraction and Hythe pier has the oldest operational pier train in the world.

"This should be treasured and valued as a piece of history, not put at risk by a venture that is not economically viable."

Dibden resident Jeff Callander, an engineer, said the plans would required automated level crossings at a time when Newtwork Rail was phasing them out.

He also claimed there would be traffic jams backing up behind the Marchwood's crossing leading to traffic chaos.

Speaking after the decision meeting, New Forest District councillor Sue Bennison, who opposed the plan, said: "I think it shows the strength of opposition to this from residents, that the people who are most closely affected by this.

"The county council has followed the correct procedure and have come to the conclusion that the business case does not stack up and consider it is not worth the time and money to proceed any further."

But Totton and Marchwood councillor David Harrison, who has campaigned hard to open the line, said the plan could come off the sidings if only local people were officially polled.

He said: "I think it should be possible for the county council to survey the people in Waterside.

"If they did so they would find demand for the service is much greater than has been portrayed by the handful of objectors who puport to represent the majority view, when they clearly do not."

Comments (10)

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7:18pm Tue 21 Jan 14

Fatty x Ford Worker says...

It will be open when them Container Trains start to rumble from the water edge!
It will be open when them Container Trains start to rumble from the water edge! Fatty x Ford Worker
  • Score: 5

7:22pm Tue 21 Jan 14

craige says...

The GRIP3 report that was issued regarding this project uses Industry Standard modelling to forecast passenger numbers - it has got to be trusted.

Councillor Harrison has canvassed opinion via his Facebook Campaign page, but has only managed a small % of 'likes' over the months in which it has been live (compared with the Population number in which this service would be available to). Social media of course being used by an ever growing number of people.

I'm very pleased with this outcome. The social, economic and environmental well being for the Waterside, at this time, are maintained.
The GRIP3 report that was issued regarding this project uses Industry Standard modelling to forecast passenger numbers - it has got to be trusted. Councillor Harrison has canvassed opinion via his Facebook Campaign page, but has only managed a small % of 'likes' over the months in which it has been live (compared with the Population number in which this service would be available to). Social media of course being used by an ever growing number of people. I'm very pleased with this outcome. The social, economic and environmental well being for the Waterside, at this time, are maintained. craige
  • Score: -14

7:30pm Tue 21 Jan 14

OSPREYSAINT says...

craige wrote:
The GRIP3 report that was issued regarding this project uses Industry Standard modelling to forecast passenger numbers - it has got to be trusted.

Councillor Harrison has canvassed opinion via his Facebook Campaign page, but has only managed a small % of 'likes' over the months in which it has been live (compared with the Population number in which this service would be available to). Social media of course being used by an ever growing number of people.

I'm very pleased with this outcome. The social, economic and environmental well being for the Waterside, at this time, are maintained.
I hope you don't live to regret this decision, the longer it is left, the more expensive it will become and sooner or later it is going to be needed, trust me, not a biased report that hasn't asked anyone the right questions.
[quote][p][bold]craige[/bold] wrote: The GRIP3 report that was issued regarding this project uses Industry Standard modelling to forecast passenger numbers - it has got to be trusted. Councillor Harrison has canvassed opinion via his Facebook Campaign page, but has only managed a small % of 'likes' over the months in which it has been live (compared with the Population number in which this service would be available to). Social media of course being used by an ever growing number of people. I'm very pleased with this outcome. The social, economic and environmental well being for the Waterside, at this time, are maintained.[/p][/quote]I hope you don't live to regret this decision, the longer it is left, the more expensive it will become and sooner or later it is going to be needed, trust me, not a biased report that hasn't asked anyone the right questions. OSPREYSAINT
  • Score: 14

10:33pm Tue 21 Jan 14

Torchie1 says...

Fatty x Ford Worker wrote:
It will be open when them Container Trains start to rumble from the water edge!
The line has never closed as it is used on a daily basis by trains going to and from the refinery at Fawley.
[quote][p][bold]Fatty x Ford Worker[/bold] wrote: It will be open when them Container Trains start to rumble from the water edge![/p][/quote]The line has never closed as it is used on a daily basis by trains going to and from the refinery at Fawley. Torchie1
  • Score: 12

10:39pm Tue 21 Jan 14

Bishdurham says...

Maybe if people were on the train and not in their cars there would not be a traffic jam at Marchwood crossing?
Maybe if people were on the train and not in their cars there would not be a traffic jam at Marchwood crossing? Bishdurham
  • Score: 11

11:24pm Tue 21 Jan 14

The Mad Dog says...

craige wrote:
The GRIP3 report that was issued regarding this project uses Industry Standard modelling to forecast passenger numbers - it has got to be trusted.

Councillor Harrison has canvassed opinion via his Facebook Campaign page, but has only managed a small % of 'likes' over the months in which it has been live (compared with the Population number in which this service would be available to). Social media of course being used by an ever growing number of people.

I'm very pleased with this outcome. The social, economic and environmental well being for the Waterside, at this time, are maintained.
The GRIP3 report may well be an 'industry standard, but it does not seem to be based on current data nor take all local factors into consideration.
I guess you were one of the 439 people "living, working and visiting the area". No wonder you are pleased then that your skewed argument won this round. Asking people visiting the area is hardly fair when the vast majority of the residents where not asked (I can vouch for that as I live in Marchwood)
Quite how councillor Woodward can stae theat only existing bus users would use a new train service and that it would not take any cars off the A326 is beyond me. He has not taken the trouble to ask anyone. Whatever happened to 'representing the people'? If he is head of Transport for the county no wonder the roads and railways are in such a bloody mess!
[quote][p][bold]craige[/bold] wrote: The GRIP3 report that was issued regarding this project uses Industry Standard modelling to forecast passenger numbers - it has got to be trusted. Councillor Harrison has canvassed opinion via his Facebook Campaign page, but has only managed a small % of 'likes' over the months in which it has been live (compared with the Population number in which this service would be available to). Social media of course being used by an ever growing number of people. I'm very pleased with this outcome. The social, economic and environmental well being for the Waterside, at this time, are maintained.[/p][/quote]The GRIP3 report may well be an 'industry standard, but it does not seem to be based on current data nor take all local factors into consideration. I guess you were one of the 439 people "living, working and visiting the area". No wonder you are pleased then that your skewed argument won this round. Asking people visiting the area is hardly fair when the vast majority of the residents where not asked (I can vouch for that as I live in Marchwood) Quite how councillor Woodward can stae theat only existing bus users would use a new train service and that it would not take any cars off the A326 is beyond me. He has not taken the trouble to ask anyone. Whatever happened to 'representing the people'? If he is head of Transport for the county no wonder the roads and railways are in such a bloody mess! The Mad Dog
  • Score: 9

11:25pm Tue 21 Jan 14

The Mad Dog says...

craige wrote:
The GRIP3 report that was issued regarding this project uses Industry Standard modelling to forecast passenger numbers - it has got to be trusted.

Councillor Harrison has canvassed opinion via his Facebook Campaign page, but has only managed a small % of 'likes' over the months in which it has been live (compared with the Population number in which this service would be available to). Social media of course being used by an ever growing number of people.

I'm very pleased with this outcome. The social, economic and environmental well being for the Waterside, at this time, are maintained.
The GRIP3 report may well be an 'industry standard, but it does not seem to be based on current data nor take all local factors into consideration.
I guess you were one of the 439 people "living, working and visiting the area". No wonder you are pleased then that your skewed argument won this round. Asking people visiting the area is hardly fair when the vast majority of the residents where not asked (I can vouch for that as I live in Marchwood)
Quite how councillor Woodward can state that only existing bus users would use a new train service and that it would not take any cars off the A326 is beyond me. He has not taken the trouble to ask anyone. Whatever happened to 'representing the people'? If he is head of Transport for the county no wonder the roads and railways are in such a bloody mess!
[quote][p][bold]craige[/bold] wrote: The GRIP3 report that was issued regarding this project uses Industry Standard modelling to forecast passenger numbers - it has got to be trusted. Councillor Harrison has canvassed opinion via his Facebook Campaign page, but has only managed a small % of 'likes' over the months in which it has been live (compared with the Population number in which this service would be available to). Social media of course being used by an ever growing number of people. I'm very pleased with this outcome. The social, economic and environmental well being for the Waterside, at this time, are maintained.[/p][/quote]The GRIP3 report may well be an 'industry standard, but it does not seem to be based on current data nor take all local factors into consideration. I guess you were one of the 439 people "living, working and visiting the area". No wonder you are pleased then that your skewed argument won this round. Asking people visiting the area is hardly fair when the vast majority of the residents where not asked (I can vouch for that as I live in Marchwood) Quite how councillor Woodward can state that only existing bus users would use a new train service and that it would not take any cars off the A326 is beyond me. He has not taken the trouble to ask anyone. Whatever happened to 'representing the people'? If he is head of Transport for the county no wonder the roads and railways are in such a bloody mess! The Mad Dog
  • Score: 0

11:41pm Tue 21 Jan 14

Positively4thStreet says...

This outcome is just so obviously wrong on all levels,it simply beggars belief!
Hopefully common sense will prevail,because there is something seriously dodgy about all of this.
This outcome is just so obviously wrong on all levels,it simply beggars belief! Hopefully common sense will prevail,because there is something seriously dodgy about all of this. Positively4thStreet
  • Score: 7

7:07am Wed 22 Jan 14

craige says...

The Mad Dog wrote:
craige wrote:
The GRIP3 report that was issued regarding this project uses Industry Standard modelling to forecast passenger numbers - it has got to be trusted.

Councillor Harrison has canvassed opinion via his Facebook Campaign page, but has only managed a small % of 'likes' over the months in which it has been live (compared with the Population number in which this service would be available to). Social media of course being used by an ever growing number of people.

I'm very pleased with this outcome. The social, economic and environmental well being for the Waterside, at this time, are maintained.
The GRIP3 report may well be an 'industry standard, but it does not seem to be based on current data nor take all local factors into consideration.
I guess you were one of the 439 people "living, working and visiting the area". No wonder you are pleased then that your skewed argument won this round. Asking people visiting the area is hardly fair when the vast majority of the residents where not asked (I can vouch for that as I live in Marchwood)
Quite how councillor Woodward can stae theat only existing bus users would use a new train service and that it would not take any cars off the A326 is beyond me. He has not taken the trouble to ask anyone. Whatever happened to 'representing the people'? If he is head of Transport for the county no wonder the roads and railways are in such a bloody mess!
I can confirm that I was not one of the 439 people, but if my household was asked, this would have increased to 441.

If what you want is to not to drive your car to wherever you want to go, then now is the time to ask for a subsidy to be pumped into extra buses around rush hour... With a personal guarantee that you will use public transport.

But the honest comment is that we would then all sit back and watch those buses drive to and from the waterside, 25% utilised. As it seems to be now.

Train, bus, ferry options - people prefer cars. I'm sorry but that's a fact. Can you think of the last time that you took a bus to the train station, and then a train to the beach and back again for a day out?! It's not the norm. This is One of the reasons why house builders put these things called driveways on the land when they build properties.

It's a terrible argument to say that another type of public transport seems to be needed.
[quote][p][bold]The Mad Dog[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]craige[/bold] wrote: The GRIP3 report that was issued regarding this project uses Industry Standard modelling to forecast passenger numbers - it has got to be trusted. Councillor Harrison has canvassed opinion via his Facebook Campaign page, but has only managed a small % of 'likes' over the months in which it has been live (compared with the Population number in which this service would be available to). Social media of course being used by an ever growing number of people. I'm very pleased with this outcome. The social, economic and environmental well being for the Waterside, at this time, are maintained.[/p][/quote]The GRIP3 report may well be an 'industry standard, but it does not seem to be based on current data nor take all local factors into consideration. I guess you were one of the 439 people "living, working and visiting the area". No wonder you are pleased then that your skewed argument won this round. Asking people visiting the area is hardly fair when the vast majority of the residents where not asked (I can vouch for that as I live in Marchwood) Quite how councillor Woodward can stae theat only existing bus users would use a new train service and that it would not take any cars off the A326 is beyond me. He has not taken the trouble to ask anyone. Whatever happened to 'representing the people'? If he is head of Transport for the county no wonder the roads and railways are in such a bloody mess![/p][/quote]I can confirm that I was not one of the 439 people, but if my household was asked, this would have increased to 441. If what you want is to not to drive your car to wherever you want to go, then now is the time to ask for a subsidy to be pumped into extra buses around rush hour... With a personal guarantee that you will use public transport. But the honest comment is that we would then all sit back and watch those buses drive to and from the waterside, 25% utilised. As it seems to be now. Train, bus, ferry options - people prefer cars. I'm sorry but that's a fact. Can you think of the last time that you took a bus to the train station, and then a train to the beach and back again for a day out?! It's not the norm. This is One of the reasons why house builders put these things called driveways on the land when they build properties. It's a terrible argument to say that another type of public transport seems to be needed. craige
  • Score: -3

9:52am Wed 22 Jan 14

Zeo says...

craige wrote:
The Mad Dog wrote:
craige wrote:
The GRIP3 report that was issued regarding this project uses Industry Standard modelling to forecast passenger numbers - it has got to be trusted.

Councillor Harrison has canvassed opinion via his Facebook Campaign page, but has only managed a small % of 'likes' over the months in which it has been live (compared with the Population number in which this service would be available to). Social media of course being used by an ever growing number of people.

I'm very pleased with this outcome. The social, economic and environmental well being for the Waterside, at this time, are maintained.
The GRIP3 report may well be an 'industry standard, but it does not seem to be based on current data nor take all local factors into consideration.
I guess you were one of the 439 people "living, working and visiting the area". No wonder you are pleased then that your skewed argument won this round. Asking people visiting the area is hardly fair when the vast majority of the residents where not asked (I can vouch for that as I live in Marchwood)
Quite how councillor Woodward can stae theat only existing bus users would use a new train service and that it would not take any cars off the A326 is beyond me. He has not taken the trouble to ask anyone. Whatever happened to 'representing the people'? If he is head of Transport for the county no wonder the roads and railways are in such a bloody mess!
I can confirm that I was not one of the 439 people, but if my household was asked, this would have increased to 441.

If what you want is to not to drive your car to wherever you want to go, then now is the time to ask for a subsidy to be pumped into extra buses around rush hour... With a personal guarantee that you will use public transport.

But the honest comment is that we would then all sit back and watch those buses drive to and from the waterside, 25% utilised. As it seems to be now.

Train, bus, ferry options - people prefer cars. I'm sorry but that's a fact. Can you think of the last time that you took a bus to the train station, and then a train to the beach and back again for a day out?! It's not the norm. This is One of the reasons why house builders put these things called driveways on the land when they build properties.

It's a terrible argument to say that another type of public transport seems to be needed.
Hmm, I drive my car to the local railway station and go to the beach, places like Portsmouth, Bournemouth, Weymouth and Swanage - I have no buses round my area and I don't like to drive long distance, it also keeps my car insurance down.
[quote][p][bold]craige[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]The Mad Dog[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]craige[/bold] wrote: The GRIP3 report that was issued regarding this project uses Industry Standard modelling to forecast passenger numbers - it has got to be trusted. Councillor Harrison has canvassed opinion via his Facebook Campaign page, but has only managed a small % of 'likes' over the months in which it has been live (compared with the Population number in which this service would be available to). Social media of course being used by an ever growing number of people. I'm very pleased with this outcome. The social, economic and environmental well being for the Waterside, at this time, are maintained.[/p][/quote]The GRIP3 report may well be an 'industry standard, but it does not seem to be based on current data nor take all local factors into consideration. I guess you were one of the 439 people "living, working and visiting the area". No wonder you are pleased then that your skewed argument won this round. Asking people visiting the area is hardly fair when the vast majority of the residents where not asked (I can vouch for that as I live in Marchwood) Quite how councillor Woodward can stae theat only existing bus users would use a new train service and that it would not take any cars off the A326 is beyond me. He has not taken the trouble to ask anyone. Whatever happened to 'representing the people'? If he is head of Transport for the county no wonder the roads and railways are in such a bloody mess![/p][/quote]I can confirm that I was not one of the 439 people, but if my household was asked, this would have increased to 441. If what you want is to not to drive your car to wherever you want to go, then now is the time to ask for a subsidy to be pumped into extra buses around rush hour... With a personal guarantee that you will use public transport. But the honest comment is that we would then all sit back and watch those buses drive to and from the waterside, 25% utilised. As it seems to be now. Train, bus, ferry options - people prefer cars. I'm sorry but that's a fact. Can you think of the last time that you took a bus to the train station, and then a train to the beach and back again for a day out?! It's not the norm. This is One of the reasons why house builders put these things called driveways on the land when they build properties. It's a terrible argument to say that another type of public transport seems to be needed.[/p][/quote]Hmm, I drive my car to the local railway station and go to the beach, places like Portsmouth, Bournemouth, Weymouth and Swanage - I have no buses round my area and I don't like to drive long distance, it also keeps my car insurance down. Zeo
  • Score: 3

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