Brickhill Parish Council – East West Rail Questionnaire
The proposed railway from Bedford to Cambridge may bring many benefits but will also have long lasting implications for Bedford and the parishes it passes through. Please take part in East West Rail’s consultation, sending in your view by 9th June. Brickhill Parish Council also would like your views, but by 29th May please, so that it is able to consider your comments at its meeting on 3rd June.
All contributions will be treated in confidence, with no personal details shared outside of the parish council.
Latest consultation by East West Rail
The East West Rail company is consulting on options for the railway between Bedford and Cambridge. Following their selection of ‘Route E’ to the north of Bedford, announced in early 2020, they are now consulting on more specific proposals. The parish council recognises that some residents have strong views on the question of Route E, but it is really important to take part in this latest consultation.
East West Rail is asking for views on five alternative routes, or ‘alignments’. All these routes would pass through Bedford Midland station, then leave the Midland Mainline north of the urban area and head past Clapham Park Wood. At that point the routes split into two, one heading further north and the other closer towards Woodlands Park. East West Rail state that their ‘emerging preferences’ are Alignments 1 and 9; it is possible that comments from residents may influence which is chosen.
You can take part in East West Rail’s consultation here, with supporting information here. To understand more about East West Rail’s views about the pros and cons of the different alignments, look at Chapter 9, pages 300 – 371, of the Consultation Technical Report. Please do respond before 9th June. Note that they want residents to give their preferences for the five options. An interactive map is available on the East West Rail website here, with an annotated copy of part of the map below.
If you wish to make plain your opposition to Route E (the alignments East West Rail are consulting on are all within Route E) and your preference for an alternative route, there are sites available where you can express your view. See the BFARe website, CPRE Bedfordshire’s website. In addition there is information available on Bedford Borough Council’s website, the Brickhill Borough Councillors’ website, the Bedford Rail blogsite and on East West Rail’s main website itself. However, it is important that Brickhill Parish Council also hears your views about the options within Route E.
Route Alignment 1, 2 and 6: Would cross Graze Hill in a cutting between Highfield Farm and Traylesfield Farm, before then crossing the B660 on Sunderland Hill, north of the Ravensden Crossroads and heading east towards Wilden. From the far side of Clapham Park Wood to Graze Hill most of the railway will be in a cutting, with a shorter section immediately before Graze Hill on an embankment approximately of up to 4.6m higher than the current ground level. It would be approximately 600m from Anjulita Court and 850m from Egremont Mews .
Route Alignment 8 & 9: Would cross Graze Hill in a cutting closer to the Woodlands Park estate, just beyond the edge of the North Brickhill Country Park. It would then cross the B660 just south of Wayside Farm Park and head east towards Renhold. From the far side of Clapham Park Wood to Graze Hill the railway will be partially in a cutting, but then on an embankment as it rises to Graze Hill. The embankment would be about 800m long and include a viaduct about 100m long; the height would be up to 15.5m above the current ground level. It would be approximately 200m from Anjulita Court and 320m from Egremont Mews i
Comparison of the two alignments: Residents of Woodlands Park would be more affected by Route Alignment 8 & 9, as it is bound to be noisier and more visually obvious than Route Alignment 1, 2 & 6.
Please give us your views. It should take about 5 minutes. Please click the button to take part –
i The distances were calculated by a parish councillor and are approximations.