Keswick to Penrith Railway champion Cedric Martindale has praised four Cumbrian MPs who are backing his re-opening of the rail line which was closed in March 1972.
Conservative MPs Trudy Harrison (Copeland), Mark Jenkinson (Workington), Neil Hudson (Penrith and The Border) and John Stevenson (Carlisle), assisted by Allerdale Borough Council, have put together a bid based on the work done by Mr Martindale’s CKP Railways plc over more than 20 years to demonstrate the feasibility and benefits from re-connecting Keswick to the national rail network.
Mr Martindale said the fast, inter-regional modern train services would put the North Lakes firmly on the map for business and as an accessible tourist destination. He also pointed out that buses such as the Stagecoach X4 and X5 services plus local routes, boats and taxi operators would all benefit from more people using public transport rather than cars for long distance travel.
CKP’s proposal would see an hourly service of modern trains from early morning to late evening seven days a week linking the North Lakes directly to the whole of the northern mainland Britain.
“With an increasing emphasis on sustainability, pushed even harder by World Heritage Site designation for the Lake District National Park, a situation where 95 per cent of travel is by car will simply not be acceptable in future,” said Mr Martindale.
“The CKP scheme is simple and offers maximum flexibility of future transport across Cumbria and the north, creating many new opportunities for everybody living, learning, working or relaxing in this beautiful region.”
The bid made to the Department of Transport is a competition with several stages, but at the moment no-one knows how many projects have been put forward.
Mr Martindale added: “The next steps will be decided in political circles, in a fairly short timescale, but we are quietly confident of a receptive hearing in the corridors of power.”