As part of the latest government thinking on improving the UKs transport infrastructure the Department for Transport has acknowledged the huge potential of rail lines closed under the 1963 Beeching Act, and as a result has recently launched a £500 million ‘Ideas Fund‘ to look at the feasibility of reopening many of them.

Initial proposals were invited in February this year with 10 projects* being allocated funding to undertake feasibility work. A number of other proposals have received feedback and are being encouraged to resubmit. This includes a bid from a consortium led by Transport for West Midlands in partnership with Staffordshire County Council and the West Midlands Rail Executive, for restoration of passenger services on an existing 6 miles of freight line between Lichfield and Burton-on-Trent, including a new station at Alrewas. The bid is being sponsored by both Michael Fabricant MP for Lichfield and Kate Griffiths MP for Burton-on-Trent.

To see a copy of the initial Ideas Fund bid click here.

In support of the WMRE bid, Transport for Britain is exploring the setting up of a pilot train service between Lichfield and Alrewas / National Memorial Arboretum. We are conducting a survey to identify whether there is sufficient passenger demand and enough people to provide either time or financial resources to help make this happen. To take our survey click here.