Campaigners '110 per cent confident' railway station will reopen in Doncaster town
Campaigners lobbying to reopen a railway line and to build a new station in a Doncaster town have said they’re ‘110 per cent confident’ it will happen following the allocation of Government money in the Budget.
Graham Moss, who is chair of Friends of Askern Railway Station, said the announcement was ‘fantastic news’ and paid credit to campaigners for their hard work since 2014.
Around £50,000 will be allocated from the Department for Transport for a business case into reopening the Doncaster to Leeds via Askern line.
The plans would also bring back Askern railway station which was closed down in 1948.
Campaigners have previously said that reinstating a railway station in Askern will be vital for enhanced connectivity, a boost to jobs and will take cars off the road.
The campaign group has support from Doncaster North MP Ed Miliband and the South Yorkshire Combined Authority and political leaders in neighbouring West Yorkshire.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak has set aside £650,000 to pay for outline business cases on 13 successful ‘Ideas Fund’ proposals for new lines and stations reinstating passenger links.
The Askern proposal, as well as reopening a line from Sheffield Victoria to the town of Stocksbridge, are two of the 13 that were successful for the funding.
Mr Moss said: “This is big news, that we’ve now been eventually recognised by central government.
“We’ve got the backing of every organisation this time around, including the South Yorkshire mayor, DMBC has backed it, South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive are on board and that’s a big boost.
“Unlike previous campaigns, there’s always been obstacles like organisations not backing it but this time around our campaign since it started in 2014 has gained the backing of everybody and that’s been brilliant because it has helped no end.
“It’s an absolute no-brainer because the amount of vehicles it’ll take off the road is potentially phenomenal and everyone knows how bad the A19 can get for traffic, it’s horrendous,
“The road as it stands can’t be altered because the houses are built right up to the carriageway, so it can’t be widened. So this service between Doncaster and Leeds could be a Godsend to take loads of cars off the road and contribute to the climate emergency we’re hearing a lot about.”
When asked if he felt the station and line would reopen, Mr Moss replied: “Yes, I’m 110 per cent that this station will go ahead.”