Press Release 22nd June 2011

Don valley railway drinks to a sucess at re-launch on 30th anniversary of closure of woodhead line

As Saturday 16th July 2011, the 30th Anniversary of the Woodhead Line’s closure approaches, Don Valley Railway can see light at the end of the tunnel with a new website launching, plans for re-introducing trains on the line between Sheffield and Stocksbridge on track and a new beer to mark the momentous 30 year wait for the route’s re-opening. To mark the anniversary members of the group will walk the line and are inviting interested members of the public to join them.

Saturday 16th July 2011 marks exactly 30 years since the last train ran through the Woodhead Tunnel along the Manchester-Sheffield Trans-Pennine line. Ever since then there have been voices calling for the route’s re-instatement, pointing to the economic, social and environmental benefits the line delivered.

Don Valley Railway, a not-for-profit company and a registered charity run by the community, for the community, have been working to introduce a viable commuter service between Sheffield and Stocksbridge using the existing freight route in the Upper Don Valley.

With a new steering group working hard to deliver the Sheffield-Stocksbridge project on time, a brand new website is to be officially re-launched on July 16th 2011 stating the groups aims and outlining the work it’s been carrying out.

To mark the website re-launch and the anniversary, Don Valley Railway, asked Pete Roberts, micro-brewer and landlord of the Harlequin Pub, Nursery Street, Sheffield to produce a suitable beer for the occasion and he has duly obliged.

Tunnel Vision Bitter, a mid brown 4% strength session beer has been produced and should be available in real ale pubs in Sheffield, Huddersfield, Manchester and at many other locations across the north of England.

Don Valley Railway treasurer Paul Denton says:

“At the time of its closure Woodhead was the most modern rail tunnel in Britain. Calling the beer ‘Tunnel Vision’ sums up what a lot of people think. The potential of reopening this railway for passengers from Sheffield to Stocksbridge or Manchester should be taken seriously.”

On the day of the anniversary, Don Valley Railway invites you to walk the line with them. A walk along the railway will take place starting at Deepcar Station(11.00). You can join at Penistone (12.30) or Hazelhead (13.30) before going on the route of the line to Dunford Bridge and then up onto the moors where we will rendezvous with the Re-Open the Woodhead Line Group at 3pm, who wish to see the whole line open and will walk the line from Hadfield on the other side , before returning.

Notes

1 Don Valley Railway aims to introduce passenger services between Stocksbridge/Deepcar and central Sheffield using the currently freight-only railway line between and serving Tata Steelworks in Stocksbridge from Woodburn Junction in Sheffield with the future aspiration of extending this service along the route of the Woodhead Rail line from the Junction at Deepcar.

2 Ove Arup and Partners Ltd (Arup) last year produced an engineering feasibility study on behalf of Don Valley Railway to evaluate the potential for operating a reliable commuter rail service along the route between Sheffield and Stocksbridge which it is hoped will contribute to creating a business case for the re-opening of passenger services on the rail link.

3 Arup recommended that the most cost effective train service option is a simple shuttle between a station close to the site of the former Sheffield Victoria and Deepcar. This could operate on a 2 trains-per-hour basis with no intermediate stops, utilising a single train. Diesel-powered rolling stock is seen as the most suitable for the operation of the line.

This option is also potentially the easiest to get into operation. Enhancements could be made in the future as funds allow to extend into the centre of Stocksbridge, and provide additional stations at Oughtibridge and Wadsley Bridge, and extensions towards Penistone

4 Further Enquiries can be addressed to Chris Bell (07986 759259) or Paul Denton (0752 845 2898)

5 More details available about the walk on the website

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One Response to Press Release 22nd June 2011

  1. ken metham says:

    just a quick note how is the railway from sheffield to stockbridge progressing; not heard anything for a while’ it would be a good move ;i wrote to the sheffield star some years ago about this; i hope it comes of good luck

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