This is the webpage of the Minsters Rail Campaign. Our aim is to see the former rail link between York and Beverley reopened with new stations at Stamford Bridge, Pocklington and Market Weighton ideally placed to suck traffic off the congested A1079 (see story below) and A166 roads.
Our case for re-opening document can be found here and a map of the proposed route can be found below.
We are a voluntary organisation reliant on donations (both time and money) and appreciate any help we can get.
The committee consists of:
Peter Hemmerman - Chair
David Pennie - Secretary
Tony Ross - Treasurer
David Wells - Membership Sec.
22 November 2013, from Hansard written answers
Lilian Greenwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will impose a moratorium on building on disused railway paths. 
Stephen Hammond: Network Rail's land disposals are regulated and monitored by the independent Office of Rail Regulation through a condition in its network licence. The purpose of the licence condition is to protect land that may be required for the future development of the rail network, and to prevent the disposal of that land against the public interest.
The Government's National Planning Policy Framework states that local planning authorities should identify and protect, where there is robust evidence, sites and routes which could be critical in developing infrastructure to widen transport choice.
Membership Secretary David Wells has been delighted with the response to his invitation to re-join the Campaign, but warns that more members are needed.
'We put membership on hold about a year ago with the uncertainty the MRC faced,' says David. 'However, we still need people to join the campaign to ensure we can keep pressure up locally.'
Membership costs £10 for a year, although we would prefer it if people joined for longer, as the cost of stamps means less of the money goes to the Campaign itself.
Joining the campaign costs £10 per year or £50 for life. You can download a membership form here or contact firstname.lastname@example.org
50 YEARS AGO
Fifty years ago the last passenger trains operated over the Minsters line and a valuable link with the national rail network was lost. The decision was very borderline and it has been suggested that in fact mistakes were made and the line should have remained open.
We cannot undo the past but the Minsters Rail Campaign believe that the re-opening of the line will be beneficial for the local area. Just this week we heard that a journey along the last 9 miles of the A1079 towards York was undertaken at an average speed of 8 mph. With more houses being built and subsidy cuts to local bus services being made the case for the railway looks stronger than ever.
The first stage to re-open the line must be to get the 2005 positive Feasibility report updated and the MRC is trying to get councils, MPs and major local players lined up to approach the Local Enterprise Partnership for a multi-modal A1079 corridor study to study the problem and come up with a long-term solution. Shorter term safety improvements must be made to the A1079 but a long-term vision is needed.
Unfortunately we are still trying to get meaningful support from Hull and East Riding of Yorkshire councils although MPs are starting to see the sense in this idea. The MRC remain commited to this idea and welcome any support from members and interested supporters.
An excellent artilce in the York Press can be found here: http://www.yorkpress.co.uk/news/14108911.ALL_ABOARD__Is_there_hope_for_the_York_to_Beverley_rail_line_50_years_after_it_closed_/
ROAD USAGE FIGURES
We have received a clarification from Ian Burnett of ERYC on road usage figures for the area. The figures are taken from Automatic Traffic Counters (ATC), which are permanent loops in the road. The ATC between Market Weighton and Pocklington is located just east of Hayton dual carriageway and the ATC between Pocklington and York is located at Kexby.
Ian confirmed that 26,000 was the net figures mentioned at the meeting (expected A1079 use around 2029).
The following are 12 hour (0700-1900) two-way traffic flows:
- Market Weighton to Pocklington (just east of Hayton dual carriageway) - 14,223
- Pocklington to York (Kexby) - 14,457
- A166 (Stamford Bridge) - 6,872
We have applied a quick bit of maths by dividing 14,457 by twelve to get an hourly number passing the Kexby counter of 1205 vehicles per hour or around 20 vehicles in an average minute.
FULL NOTES FROM COUNCIL MEETING 5/11/14
The proposal to electrify the existing estuary route to Hull and to improve journey times to around one hour are the key aims of Hull and ERYC. The Northern franchise ITT is likely to specify an hourly service over this route as well. This addresses part of the MRC business case.
The councils do not have the funding to finance a further study. The power to do this now lies with the Local Enterprise Partnerships who have the funds and the ear of local government. We sensed some frustration from councillors on this state of play.
Graham North (NYCC/Ryedale) suggested we need to go right back to basics. The only way a LEP will fund a project is for it to have a more robust business case. To get to the business case you have to persuade them the study is worth doing. Instead of a rail study, Graham suggests a corridor study to fully understand the needs of the communities and businesses in the corridor (and he was keen for us to note the best solution may not involve building more railway). Graham pointed to the Harrogate electrification study as an example of good practice.
Symon Fraser (ERYC) doubted the funding would ever be raised. Ian Burnett (ERYC officer) said the A1079 could cope with predicted levels of traffic to 2029 [and then?]. There are further improvements due in the next few years: limited doubling and new roundabout near Market Weighton.
James Alexander (CYC) suggested contacting LEPs to see if they were interested in funding a corridor type study, perhaps convening a meeting with the three local LEPs and local MPs as a way forward. Pete Hemmerman (MRC) is to consider this as next step.
All parties agreed they supported the project and would be prepared to meet after Minsters Rail Campaign had contacted the LEPs.
It was noted that the 'Northern powerhouse' aspirations of the current government, the One North and Rail North bodies and policy changes in the forthcoming years may all affect the projects - Cllr Stephen Bayes (Hull) encouraged the Campaign to keep going whilst acknowledging this was a long-haul project.
THE BENEFITS OF HAVING A RAIL LINK
Here is an interesting table courtesy of the BBC 27/03/2013: highlights the benefits of being attached to the rail network rather well.
Average house price
(Halifax price index)
Tourist Information Centre visits (2012)
(Harrogate Borough Council)
Daily weekday rail services
(West Yorkshire Metro)
Annual station footfall
Approx. 1.3 million