Wixams: £13m plans for new railway station 20 years in the making brought to public
Plans to build a new railway station in Wixams are set to be put for public consultation. The outline planning permission for Wixams new town, that was granted back in 2003, included a ‘Station Quarter’.
A planning application for the new station was approved in 2012 but the project never materialised and the permission eventually lapsed. When it became apparent Network Rail and the developer were unable to deliver the station, Bedford Borough Council took the reins of the project.
The council has allocated £13.4 million of section 106 money – financial contributions from housing developments – and invested £26 million to ensure the project steams ahead. As well as a new station, there will be a car park and supporting infrastructure.
Read more: Bedfordshire town set to get new train station
The new station would be located in the aptly named Station Quarter on the western boundary of the Wixams, and on the Midland Main Line between Bedford and Flitwick stations. It will be served by up to four Thameslink trains per hour in each direction.
Plans for the facility will include two platforms, a station building complete with toilets, waiting room, and coffee shop, and parking for up to 350 vehicles. There will be provisions for electric vehicles, blue badges, secure bike parks, and provision for taxis and buses.
Two planning applications are set to be submitted. A ‘reserved matters’ application to provide more details about the proposal and a full planning application related to the land required for the construction of the platforms and works to the railway line.
Bedford Borough Council is now launching a public consultation ahead of the formal planning application. There will be two drop-in events for local residents, businesses and interested parties to find out more and ask questions. These will be at Wixams Retirement Village, Bedford Road, Wixams, on June 27 from 10am to 3pm and June 28 from 2pm to 6.45pm.
Mayor Dave Hodgson said, “The residents of Wixams have been promised a railway station for a long time, and I am pleased that we have been able to step in, fill the funding gap, and help to get this station back on track. This is a significant investment in the Borough’s transport provision, and creates more opportunity for sustainable travel here in Bedford Borough. Please do take a look at the plans, come along to one of the drop ins if you can, and let us know what you think.”
There will be an information section showing plans for the station available on the Bedford Borough Council website. Or feedback can be provided by emailing WixamsStation@bedford.gov.uk, or by writing to Wixams Station, Major Projects, Borough Hall, Cauldwell St, Bedford, MK42 9AP.
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