How it can be done

Cirencester Community Railway

The Bridge over the A429

In order to get the line reinstated, we will have to get the bridge replaced

 

A429 Bridge Map

After the line was removed, the bridge was pulled down and the road was straightened.

This involved removing a great deal of soil, so that now the gap to be spanned is about 40 metres wide.

 

It would be possible to re-build the earthworks (keeping the road where it is today, of course) or it may be possible to span the gap with a wider bridge.

 

Both of these options, and any others, will be evaluated to find the best solution. Whatever is chosen, it is important the the bridge is aesthetically appropriate for the Cotswolds!

Rolling Stock

We plan to use a single self-powered carriage. The ideal carriage will seat approximately 40 passengers, with room for perhaps another 60 standing and faciolities to transport bicycles conveniently.

(For comparison, the Docklands Light Railway uses cars which each seat 80 and can carry 284 people!)

If possible, we will use an electric traction, battery powered propulsion system, but initially we may use a low-power diesel engine instead.

Since the route is completely level, and only 4 miles long, the motive power required is smaller than for most railcar applications.

With a simple short return journey, it should be possible to operate with a limited energy store.

An example of a very suitable vehicle currently under development is the Rail Innovation Centre's Very Light Rail vehicle.

Other Bridges

Windmill Road, Kemble

The line will cross the road just outside Kemble station. The levels of the line and road allow sufficient space for cars, but it will be necessary to either raise the rail or lower the road to provide enough headroom for busses and lorries, or install a level crossing.

There are two other bridges which are still in place, but will need to be checked to ensure they are still in good condition.

One is a rail-over-road bridge at Beechwood, the other is a road-over-rail bridge at Parklease.

The Beechwood bridge passes over both the road and the canal, in two adjacent arches. The structure appears to be sound, but a full engineer's assessment will be required. Since the railcar will be much lighter than the steam locomotives for which the bridge was built, it is hoped that only minor work wil be needed.

At Parklease the road passes over the track, and carries very little traffic as it is a dead-end serving only one farm.

The Town Extension

It has been proposed that instead of finishing at the Chesterton Halt, the line should be extended to a halt near the RAU, across the Tetbury Road and Stroud Road, and then down the hill to finish at a halt near the Sports Centre.

 

TELL US WHAT YOU THINK - would that bring a big benefit to the people of Cirencester? Would it be worth the extra cost?

Photos of the Route

Benefits of the Railway

  • Easier commuting to London
  • Easier for tourists to get to Ciren
  • Reliable connection to the mainline
  • Reduced car usage
  • Improved employment opportunities
  • Better access to Gloucester
  • Reduced traffic on A417/A429
  • Easier for students to get to the RAU

The Way Forward

  • Contact CDC Planners
  • Contact landowners
  • Contact Network Rail
  • Arrange feasilibily study funding