Call for second train station in Stevenage under serious consideration
A PROPOSAL for a second train station to be built in Stevenage has been hailed an absolutely brilliant brainwave and is being considered as a serious possibility by councillors. The idea to build a station on the Hertford branch line on land near Hertfo
A PROPOSAL for a second train station to be built in Stevenage has been hailed "an absolutely brilliant brainwave" and is being considered as a serious possibility by councillors.
The idea to build a station on the Hertford branch line on land near Hertford Road Community Centre in Bragbury End has come from resident Mick Bell.
He voiced his suggestion at a Hertford Road Residents' Association meeting, in his capacity as chairman, and the idea is now being considered by the Herts Highways Joint Member Panel for the Stevenage Urban Transport Plan (UTP).
The UTP sets out the proposed transport improvements for Stevenage, initially for the next five years, but also the next five to 20 years.
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The most recent stations to be opened in Comet country are Arlesey on October 1, 1988, and Watton-at-Stone on May 17, 1982.
Mr Bell said: "The idea came to me because we have got such a problem with buses. You can't get anywhere on a bus after 7pm, so why not get a train?"
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He explained the proposal is for a whistle-stop station, which consists of a platform but no ticket office. "We have got a place for car parking, on the green near the community centre," he added.
"The idea was quite well received at our meeting because we are stuck out on a limb up here.
"We have a lot of elderly people, young people with kiddies, and there are people with medical problems who need to get out into the community but are stuck here. It's quite a big problem.
"There is a need for a station - I definitely think so - but it's a long-term plan."
Cllr Simon Speller, a member of Stevenage Borough Council, said: "This has got to be an absolutely brilliant brainwave.
"People are more in danger of losing their independence because there is no transport. This is the kind of thing we have got to do."
But Network Rail has already dismissed the idea. A spokesman said: "Whistle-stop stations are an outdated concept which no longer meets the requirements of the modern railway, particularly on a busy route like the East Coast Main Line.
"Although it may benefit a small number of passengers, it would increase journey times for other people using the trains and could have a negative impact on the line's capacity as timetables would need to allow time for every train to slow down and stop.
"Stevenage station is just a couple of miles away so it is highly unlikely there would be a business case for installing a whistle-stop station at Bragbury End.