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More rail investment required in Vale

June 25, 2008 1:53 PM

Letter to the editor, Bucks Herald.June 10, 2008

Full marks to Chiltern Railways for the promised opening in December of the new Aylesbury Vale Parkway railway station, just off the A41 on the outskirts of Aylesbury.

It will benefit many people in the villages north and west of the town, as well as people on the new Berryfields estate, who will now be able to park their cars and use the train.

But we must ensure rail building in North Bucks does not hit the buffers here, and that that Parkway station is only the first stop on a new line linking Aylesbury through the Vale to Milton Keynes and Oxford on the East-west railway. The Liberal Democrats have campaigned since he 1990s to reopen the whole of this railway, (still used to transport rubbish to Calvert) which would open up enormous possibilities for rail travel north of the town ..

The ominous hints earlier this month that the rail regulator wants to slash Network Rail's budget for running, maintaining and improving Britain's railways by more than £3 billion, along with the wider turn down on the economy, could push back schemes such as this into an ever more distant future.

As petrol prices continue to skyrocket, it's even more important now to invest in rail, a real, sustainable, low carbon alternative to the car, and provide a lifeline to the rural communities in the Vale of Aylesbury.

This month (June) the Liberal Democrats announced radical proposals to significantly increase long-term spending on rail. The additional investment will be paid for by introducing emissions-linked charges on road freight and internal flights. We believe these proposals offer a radical alternative vision for transport in the 21st Century. We hope the other parties will listen.

Gareth Davies,

press officer, Buckingham Constituency Liberal Democrats