Saturday, 17 May 2014

Transport: Train station for Elland is 'long overdue'

The chair of West Yorkshire Metro James Lewis has called upon the Department for Transport to back plans to build a new rail station at Elland.

Speaking at the annual general meeting of the Halifax and District Rail Action Group (HADRAG), Mr Lewis said that Elland was long overdue for a train station.

He told the meeting that the business case for building a station at Elland was a strong one, adding that investment in good transport was necessary for economic growth in the town.

He said: “40 years ago, people worked in their locality and people’s working lives were in the areas they live.

“We’ve seen growth in employment in Manchester and Leeds, and with that we’ve seen a shift to people commuting larger distances.

“Transport is essential for our changing economy.”

He told the meeting that Elland station was at the ‘top of the list’ in terms of where to build new stations.

He said: “Elland has always had a strong business case in railway terms, but now we also need to make the social and economic case.

“We need to keep up the pressure - we’re doing a lot of work, we’ve committed staff and resources for this.”

Calderdale Council’s deputy leader Barry Collins was also at the meeting, and said the council were determined to make sure a new station is built in Elland as quickly as possible, with hopes to complete by 2018 at the latest.

He said: “Elland is going to happen this time - if we do the work, we can make this happen.”

Chair of HADRAG Stephen Waring added that this project should have happened over a decade ago, and is worried that it will get bogged down in planning and red tape.

He said: “Let’s hope it doesn’t take 10 years to get a station in Elland.”

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