Group lobbies for rail study support

Pro-rail campaigner Fraser Pithie. Photo: Mark Williamson.

THE group that is pushing for a more detailed study into the reopening of the Stratford to Honeybourne railway line has lobbied for the support of candidates standing in south Warwickshire divisions for Thursday’s Warwickshire County Council election.

The Shakespeare Line Promotion Group (SLPG) wrote to 42 candidates, with ten replying to confirm their support for a GRIP4 study, one was undecided on the matter.

Gloucestershire, Worcestershire and Oxfordshire county councils all support the reinstatement of the six-mile track, as does train operator Great Western Railway.

But so far Warwickshire County Council has insisted it is a matter for Network Rail.

SLPG secretary, Fraser Pithie, said: “We are really pleased with the positive nature of the responses we have received, but disappointed that 31 have not even bothered to respond.”

The group wrote to candidates standing in Alcester, Arden, Bidford and Welford, Shipston, Stour and the Vale, Stratford North, Stratford South, Stratford West, Studley, and Wellesbourne.

Details of their responses are available at

A study to look into the economic impact of the reinstatement of the railway line is also being carried out.

It is being funded by five councils, two train operating companies, and two pro-rail groups at a cost of £10,000, and its findings will be published in the summer.

Stratford-on-Avon District

Council by-election

VOTERS will go to the polls in two elections on Thursday.

As well as the Warwickshire County Council poll, there will also be a by-election in Stratford-on-Avon District Council’s Ettington ward.

It was called following the resignation last month of Philip Seccombe.

The Conservative quit to concentrate on his role as Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner.

The three candidates are: Bill Dowling (Lib Dem), Penny-Anne O’Donnell (Cons), and Dave Passingham (Green). Votes will be counted on Thursday night.

The Salford Priors Neighbourhood Plan referendum will also take place on the same day.

  • noam1

    The problem with the scheme is that it will require a grade-separated road crossing in south Stratford. Not only will this be expensive but construction will inconvenience motorists – so I won’t hold my breath waiting for local politicians to support this.