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 with the Conservative’s prospective parliamentary candidate for Chippenham, Michelle Donelan.
Mrs Perry said: “What I’ve promised 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.
Box Bridge update
Wiltshire Council plans to carry out works to the bridge at Box. Some people have raised concern that this could cause unnecessary disruption if this not joined up with the works being carried out by Network Rail for the electrification. This bridge is owned, inspected and maintained by Wiltshire Council and it was identified in the last Principal Bridge Inspection that repairs were required to the masonry arch, mainly due to water ingress. As a result the plan is to improve the drainage at road level to prevent water seeping through the arch barrel, and also repairs to the masonry.
We are obtaining conservation consent so that we are able to undertake this work in association with Network Rail as they will need to give us permission to work over their lines. When the consent is in place we will be able to start discussions with them regarding the exact timing of the works, whether that is before or during the electrification works they will be doing to the structure, but in either case before the electrification goes live.