Crucial meeting over re-opening Corsham railway station 'within a month'

This Is Wiltshire: Michelle Donelan, Ben Howlett, Professor Christina Slade and Devizes MP Claire Perry at Corsham Michelle Donelan, Ben Howlett, Professor Christina Slade and Devizes MP Claire Perry at Corsham

A crucial meeting between government officials and campaigners about the re-opening of Corsham railway station will take place within a month, says Devizes MP Claire Perry.

The new Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Transport was at Corsham on Friday with the Conservative’s prospective parliamentary candidate for Chippenham, Michelle Donelan.

Mrs Perry said: “What I’ve promised Michelle is to have a meeting in the next month in the department with officials and the people here today and really try and kick the tyres.”

“What we need is to get my department officials together with Network Rail and the campaigners here and I think a member from the train operating company and say, what do we need to know? What are the questions we haven’t answered? What needs to happen?”

The line between London and Bristol is being electrified over the next four years which should increase efficiency on the line and permit smaller stopping services in Wiltshire, including Corsham.

Mrs Perry stressed that any new station needed to be considered before the electrification process to prevent pylons inhibiting any future developments along the line.

She said: “There’s lots of money going into this area and I have to say the case that has been put forward by Michelle and the others here today, the economic case, it’s not a political case, for re-opening Corsham station is really strong.

“There’s money to be spent on infrastructure at the moment which is, thank goodness, long overdue.”

Mrs Perry's predecessor Stephen Hammond had met campaigners in March.

As well as Miss Donelan, Ben Howlett, prospective parliamentary candidate for Bath, Wiltshire councillors for Corsham Dick Tonge and Phil Whalley and Bath Spa University vice-chancellor Professor Christina Slade were all present at the briefing.

Miss Donelan said: “Corsham station is vital for the town, for the economy, for tourism, for education and all aspects of life.

“I have been surveying and everybody, over 90 per cent of people, support it and it’s something I am spearheading as a campaign to drive forward because now is the time that we can actually achieve it.”

Comments (10)

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2:33pm Tue 2 Sep 14

MDP says...

'Kicking tyres' is not to be recommended
'Kicking tyres' is not to be recommended MDP
  • Score: 2

3:33pm Tue 2 Sep 14

DavidP2012 says...

Brilliant idea provided this is not a piece of Tory flim-flam. We shall see.
Brilliant idea provided this is not a piece of Tory flim-flam. We shall see. DavidP2012
  • Score: 10

7:45am Wed 3 Sep 14

corshamwils says...

Due to the up grading of the lines between London and Bristol, this must be the best time for the town’s people of Corsham to have their say on the re-opening of a train station. Forget about who's or why's, Tories or Labour is not important, what is would be to stand behind those that are willing to take our voice and let it be heard, also give your support to the group who are driving this for the town, at worst we will all benefit and once the station is running, think of the freedom we will have. Today we need a car as bussing from place to place is not practable, or having to wait and change takes valuable time out of our very busy lives, but with a train station we have a main line between Cardiff, Bristol, Cheltenham, Swindon as well as London. So come on Corsham, let’s make some noise and support this project. Terry (corshamwilts facebook)
Due to the up grading of the lines between London and Bristol, this must be the best time for the town’s people of Corsham to have their say on the re-opening of a train station. Forget about who's or why's, Tories or Labour is not important, what is would be to stand behind those that are willing to take our voice and let it be heard, also give your support to the group who are driving this for the town, at worst we will all benefit and once the station is running, think of the freedom we will have. Today we need a car as bussing from place to place is not practable, or having to wait and change takes valuable time out of our very busy lives, but with a train station we have a main line between Cardiff, Bristol, Cheltenham, Swindon as well as London. So come on Corsham, let’s make some noise and support this project. Terry (corshamwilts facebook) corshamwils
  • Score: 4

11:15am Wed 3 Sep 14

kimcrawley says...

Perry actually getting anything done to help the people of Corsham - if that happens then we will have a news story, otherwise this is just puff from the G&H to help her election next year.
Perry actually getting anything done to help the people of Corsham - if that happens then we will have a news story, otherwise this is just puff from the G&H to help her election next year. kimcrawley
  • Score: 8

6:30am Thu 4 Sep 14

politepanda says...

Ms Perry "kicking tyres" is as useless and unproductive as holding "crucial" local govt. meetings. No change there, then.
Ms Perry "kicking tyres" is as useless and unproductive as holding "crucial" local govt. meetings. No change there, then. politepanda
  • Score: 4

1:40pm Thu 4 Sep 14

WiltsWalker says...

They've had since 2010 to re open this station. All looks just like an election blurb to get your local vote. Can't stand either Mrs Perry who apparently thinks that commuting is affordable and comfortable, or this parachutted in prospective MP Michelle Donelan who is more concerned about her expense account and image (she works in marketing just like Dave Cameron used to) than really representing the needs of Chippenham. More spin... Can we have someone actually elected who lives from around here for at least 5 years?
They've had since 2010 to re open this station. All looks just like an election blurb to get your local vote. Can't stand either Mrs Perry who apparently thinks that commuting is affordable and comfortable, or this parachutted in prospective MP Michelle Donelan who is more concerned about her expense account and image (she works in marketing just like Dave Cameron used to) than really representing the needs of Chippenham. More spin... Can we have someone actually elected who lives from around here for at least 5 years? WiltsWalker
  • Score: 11

1:47pm Thu 4 Sep 14

WiltsWalker says...

There used to be a local rail service running between Oxford and Bristol calling at all stations including Chippenham. It would have called at Corsham if built, but the service was taken out due to line capacity and rolling stock issues. Just remember the Conservatives privatised British Rail and as a result we pay almost 6 times as much to run the private railway as we did when it was all under state control. Yes I know Network Rail is state owned (but for how long?). Even after electrification other stations could be added - what about Royal Wotton Bassett?
There used to be a local rail service running between Oxford and Bristol calling at all stations including Chippenham. It would have called at Corsham if built, but the service was taken out due to line capacity and rolling stock issues. Just remember the Conservatives privatised British Rail and as a result we pay almost 6 times as much to run the private railway as we did when it was all under state control. Yes I know Network Rail is state owned (but for how long?). Even after electrification other stations could be added - what about Royal Wotton Bassett? WiltsWalker
  • Score: 9

1:58pm Thu 4 Sep 14

DavidP2012 says...

Agreed WiltsWalker. My wife & I took the train to Weymouth from BoA yesterday. Tiny places in the back of nowhere like Thornford, Yetminster & Chetnole have stations whereas a reasonable size town like Corsham doesn't. I have never seen much logic in what Beeching did but I would like to see more stations reopened and, in due course, the whole rail network returned to public ownership. The Tory privatisation was, like all the others, a disaster for consumers.
Agreed WiltsWalker. My wife & I took the train to Weymouth from BoA yesterday. Tiny places in the back of nowhere like Thornford, Yetminster & Chetnole have stations whereas a reasonable size town like Corsham doesn't. I have never seen much logic in what Beeching did but I would like to see more stations reopened and, in due course, the whole rail network returned to public ownership. The Tory privatisation was, like all the others, a disaster for consumers. DavidP2012
  • Score: 7

2:09pm Thu 4 Sep 14

kimcrawley says...

Technically Network Rail is not state owned, however the NAO has recently insisted that the £34 billion of investment - which companies like Worst Great Western pretend they have invested - is now audited as government borrowing. Good job Osborne promised to reduce gov't debt, oh blimey he has managed to increase it. Who are you going to blame now George? Perhaps it was Harold Wilson's fault, never yours though is it.
Technically Network Rail is not state owned, however the NAO has recently insisted that the £34 billion of investment - which companies like Worst Great Western pretend they have invested - is now audited as government borrowing. Good job Osborne promised to reduce gov't debt, oh blimey he has managed to increase it. Who are you going to blame now George? Perhaps it was Harold Wilson's fault, never yours though is it. kimcrawley
  • Score: 3

6:21pm Fri 5 Sep 14

HughBriss says...

Shame they didn't invite the local MP. In fact, downright f***ing rude!
Still, it got the prospective tory candidate's profile up. (i.e. the latest carpet bagger) which was the point of the exercise. Expect this commitment to dissolve after next year's election.
Shame they didn't invite the local MP. In fact, downright f***ing rude! Still, it got the prospective tory candidate's profile up. (i.e. the latest carpet bagger) which was the point of the exercise. Expect this commitment to dissolve after next year's election. HughBriss
  • Score: 4

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