Saturday, 25 November 2017

Inclusive Railways Please!

Dear Colleagues,

With these drawings I try to illustrate how we can ensure the East-West Rail, good as it may be does not bypass Bedford. Moreover that it enables a variety of services to use the rail infrastructure and diversity is the name of the game here. Freight must come from Felixstowe to the Midland Main Line for the West Midlands. Here we have had the Mayor of Bedford involved in campaigning to retain fast services for Bedford Midland but the East-West Rail will be at Wixams Interchange 4 miles south of Bedford Midland.  Won't East Midlands Trains not see potential in calling at Wixams for Oxbridge connectivity and so stagger their services as per Luton and Luton Parkway? Yes people will drive to Wixams, yes new development will enable it to serve those new audiences - the Marston Vale etc, but for poor ordinary people who use public transport, who do not drive, they and the regenerative footfall and spend minus the car are in Bedford and East Bedfordshire's case disenfranchised currently with the design of the laudable Oxbridge link. If you support these curves/make the case - remembering Northampton, Milton Keynes Central and rails into, across and out of London stand to gain if we redirect this freight via Bedford, so in their interest to cooperate. Likewise Northampton, if a Northampton-Bedford line is rebuilt, it brings footfall and spend minus the car but also Northampton-Cambridge with just one change of train at Wixams calling at Bedford en route. The perfect combination one would have thought. 

Please make these suggestions in your offices and help support an inclusive railway for all our sakes including Bedford. Thank you.

Yours sincerely,

Richard Pill
ERTA Chairman.

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