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£350,000 for study into bridging the gap

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by dace83, Feb 12, 2009.

  1. dace83

    dace83 New Member

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    A MAJOR breakthough in a proposed multi-million pound heritage rail scheme has been made with the announcement of a £350,000 cash boost.

    Charnwood Borough Council has won the grant from the East Midlands Development Agency for a feasibility study into Great Central Railway’s ‘Bridging the Gap’ scheme.

    In another boost to the fledgling project, Network Rail announced this week its intention to work with Great Central Railway (GCR) on the development of the works.

    The ambitious project involves joining up two existing lengths of railway line in Charnwood and Ruddington near Nottingham by restoring a missing stretch, including a long lost bridge which used to carry the old, Great Central Railway line over the Midland Main Line.

    This would result in a continuous, 20 mile run of the Great Central Railway line, from Leicester to Nottingham.

    Coun Steve Hampson the council’s economic development spokesperson said: “This is the first of many steps to making this happen.”

    He said already there were serious backers interested, although he was tight lipped about who they were.

    The feasibility study was about looking at its viability before, hopefully, convincing them to come on board.

    Mr Hampson said as well as improving the heritage railway line, bringing greater opportunities for tourism the local transport infrastructure would also benefit.

    Mr Hampson said: “While the work was being done there would be the opportunity to link to the Midland Main Line.”

    Lafarge Aggregates who had depots along the GCR route had also expressed an interest in accessing the mainline via the new link he said.

    “This would take heavy lorries off the roads as well as providing great opportunities for freight and passenger rail transport.”

    A spokeswoman for Network Rail said: “Network Rail will be working with Great Central Railways on the development of this scheme and will work with them on any elements involving the national rail network once they achieve full funding for the project.”

    Bill Ford GCR president said: “We have long believed the railway corridor could be developed to bring great benefits for the local economy.”

    GCR will be contributing £100,000 to the £450,000 cost of the study.
    http://www.loughboroughecho.net/news/lo ... -22913980/
     
  2. Pesmo

    Pesmo New Member

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    Thats real money for a study, so there must be enough serious interest to justify it.

    When I saw the quality video with animation on the Bridging the gap website I realised that this wasn't just a pipe dream. They haven't updated the website yet, but no doubt there will be something soon ?

    http://www.bridgingthegap.org.uk/index.html


    I wish them well
     
  3. Kerosene Castle

    Kerosene Castle New Member

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    Nice job chaps, shows there's some real clout behind you.
     
  4. dace83

    dace83 New Member

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    I hope within 5 years I can get a ticket from Leicester to Nottingham.
    or even better by 2010 when I'm off to uni at Leicester
     
  5. Kinghambranch

    Kinghambranch Well-Known Member

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    This has been talked about for years and the gap still hasn't been bridged. £350,000 for a study? Blimey I would expect a massive steel bridge across the gap for that (I'm obviously not a metal dealer). Do get on with it there's good chaps! A fella can't wait forever you know!
     
  6. 46118

    46118 New Member

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    I was thinking the same. In these depressed times and with structural steel supposed to be considerably cheaper than last year, I would be putting my £350,000 towards the actual metalwork!
    OK...thats not the right way to go about it, lets get "consultants" in and pay them lots of cash first to tell us more or less what we know....

    46118
     
  7. mick wilson

    mick wilson New Member

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    I don't think you guys have got any idea of what the real cost would be for such a bridge? The steelwork is only the icing on the cake. Much of the real money will be buried out of site as foundations. And that's before you build abutments.

    Come on guys. Get real.
     
  8. chessie

    chessie New Member

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    I don't know a lot about the GC, but do you ever wonder if it will remain a heritage railway, or if there is a bigger picture and it could be reinstated into the national network as a third north south corridor, as it once was?
     
  9. chrishallam

    chrishallam New Member

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    I believe that the £450k is actually for the feasibility study of turning the whole of the GGCR into a 'heritage corridor', with the railway as its spine.

    Though I agree, it's a fair few bob!
     
  10. boldford

    boldford New Member

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    To me it sounds about right for the feasibility study of the whole "Gap" project. http://www.bridgingthegap.org.uk/siteplan.html
     
  11. 46118

    46118 New Member

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    Lafarge quarry output from Mountsorrel weekdays down the GCR, across the new bridge and onto the National network, Heritage line at the weekends?

    Could be possible....

    46118
     
  12. Steve

    Steve Part of the furniture Friend

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    Well, at £50/hr it equates to just short of 5 men for a whole year. That's some study for such a short length of line! Perhaps I'm out of date on consultants charges!
     
  13. Kinghambranch

    Kinghambranch Well-Known Member

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    "I don't think you guys have got any idea of what the real cost would be for such a bridge? The steelwork is only the icing on the cake. Much of the real money will be buried out of site as foundations. And that's before you build abutments."

    No. I'll freely admit that I don't but I'm sure it could have been done for around £350K when the plan first appeared and there was a chance that it would actually happen. But now there's another "study". What is there to study? There's an embankment, then a double track main line, then a canal then a missing embankment then a bit of a scrapyard where a half built "Merchant Navy" used to be (I wonder where that is now? in the canal?) then there's a blooming great loco shed (which I guess will have to be moved) so, there's your study. I've seen the plans published in railway magazines years (and I mean years) ago but all that ever happens (like so much in this sad Country) is another study, where some shiney-bottomed so and so's take our watches off us, charge us a fortune and tell us what the time is. We have been conned and, before you ask, yes it is Friday 13th and I've had a bad day and the GCR is not being rebuilt fast enough for my liking! Now, get a grip! Rant over, where's my tablets?
     
  14. Christopher125

    Christopher125 Member

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    Not suprisingly, the benefits and potential pitfalls of the bridge project need to be worked out professionally before any money is forthcoming. Its easy to call feasibility studies and the like a waste of money if they dont find any problems, but sometimes they do, and thats why they are a neccesary evil.

    Now obviously we're sure the gap is worth the expense, but if we want someone else to help pay for it they need to be just as confident - a £450,000 study should help achieve that :)

    Chris
     
  15. The Saggin' Dragon

    The Saggin' Dragon Part of the furniture Staff Member Moderator

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    Good luck and well done for attracting the grant aid. Can't wait to hear the reaction from people on here when the next £450,000 goes on an 'Environmental Impact Study' ..........
     
  16. Kinghambranch

    Kinghambranch Well-Known Member

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    Well, its now 14 February, I'm not having a bad day, its warming up and the snow is melting but I'm still in the same mind as last night. I reckon this gap will never be bridged (sadly because if it was the GCR would be truly Great). There's been loads of talk about it over the years and while people talk and commission studies the price of everything (until very recently that is) goes up, the amount of red tape, safety cases, risk assessments, environmental impact, regulations, etc etc grows and grows which makes the chances of getting a link between the 2 GCRs less and less. Clearly, it isn't like bridging a culvert as the gap includes bridging a busy main line (which is getting busier - good!), a canal and public rights of way so safety in construction is vital and worth every penny - I'll agree with that. Just get on with it.
     
  17. geeteeone

    geeteeone New Member

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    The money for any kind of feasibility study just wasn't there before now. It's only now that the councils along the GCR corridor have woken up to the possibility of using the railway as a lynchpin for a local tourist industry, something the East Midlands is currently lacking in.

    I'm sure the GCR would love to set the diggers to work tomorrow, but when you can't even pay for the feasibility study without help, let alone the whole project, you are at the mercy of your project partners. And nothing happens quickly in local government.
     
  18. jimbo

    jimbo New Member

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    I'll agree with this! I sometimes grieve for where our old sensible country went! As I said on another thread here, we're hog tied by red tape & political correctness!!
    Having said that ,if this get's it going it'l be a bloody good thing , & not before time!
    Jimbo, volunteer & fireman GCR- 1982-1995
     
  19. jimbo

    jimbo New Member

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    I must say , this site's so slow compered to the traction engine site(Traction Talk) ! Makes me wonder where all the railway people get to!
    Any more news on the gap!!??
     
  20. Christopher125

    Christopher125 Member

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    They've only just announced the study! Hopefully when its finished we'll get some news about its findings, but thats some way off as the price of it suggests its going to be very comprehensive.

    Chris
     

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