South Yorkshire railway plans move forward

Cases for funding have been put to Government to reopen lines including the Askern Line, between Doncaster and Knottingley.

Plans to reinstate rail services and restore closed stations in South Yorkshire have moved forward.

Cases for funding have been put to Government to reopen the Don Valley Line, between Sheffield and Stocksbridge, and the Askern Line, between Doncaster and Knottingley, for local passenger services.

If approved, the proposals would go to the next stage of the national 'Restoring Your Railways' programme to provide better access to jobs, homes and education.

South Yorkshire mayor Oliver Coppard said: "There is huge support for our plans to reopen the Askern and Don Valley railway lines, because of the chance it gives us to level-up communities currently left behind because of poor public transport links.

"Fixing South Yorkshire's public transport system has to include reopening our railways and better joining up our train, tram and bus networks. Because our communities rely on these links to access the work, education and social opportunities that everyone deserves.

"The government have set a timeframe for levelling up transport connectivity across our region by 2030, but in order to achieve that goal we need them to deliver the full Northern Powerhouse Rail and match our energy and ambition for upgrading services. Projects such as 'Restoring Your Railways' offer a good starting point."

South Yorkshire's Askern and Don Valley Lines are two of 13 schemes shortlisted in October 2021 to progress to the next stage of the Government's £500m Restoring Your Railway fund, designed to reinstate local rail services and restore closed stations.

Sheffield City Council, Doncaster Council, Derbyshire County Council, Northeast Derbyshire District Council, Chesterfield Borough Council and Network Rail will play a key role in the schemes.

Further plans to restore services on the Barrow Hill Line between Sheffield and Chesterfield are being developed by South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority and Network Rail. Stations could be reinstated at Sheffield Victoria, Beighton, Killamarsh, Eckington/Renishaw, Barrow Hill/Staveley and Whittington, and a regular service could return linking Sheffield, Northeast Derbyshire and Chesterfield.

Proposals for new station at Waverley have also been submitted for government review.

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