Vision of what Soham's new railway station could look like
Railway engineers are set to show off their latest plans for Soham’s new station.
National Rail is to hold a two day consultation into the design of the station, which will be shown off at the end of the month.
Early designs released by the government-owned group show a footbridge across the track which could be built if the line is expended to two tracks.
But, under current plans, the stop will open as a single platform station with a new car park at the Station Road site.
The mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough James Palmer welcomed the announcement and said the town ‘urgently needed’ the new rail link.
"People in Soham have understandably become disillusioned over what has been a long campaign to get a railway station. They can be forgiven for thinking that it will never happen. But I've been clear that Soham station will be delivered and delivered ahead of schedule," he said.
"In order to support the growth of housing and the local economy in Soham, the town needs a railway station. You cannot effectively deliver growth without having the infrastructure in place, and this station is exactly the sort of scheme the combined authority was set up to deliver."
Residents will be able to view the latest proposals at the Ross Peers Sports Centre on February 26, 4pm until 8, and the following day, 10am until 2pm.
And under current plans the station could be open as early as 2021, with this planning phase scheduled to be complete by July.
Mayor Palmer added: "I hope that with our clear, budgeted plans coupled with the public information event and activity on the site scheduled for next month, that people draw confidence that this scheme is very much happening and that this is not another false dawn,"
County councillor Mark Goldsack said the project’s progression was “brilliant news” and called on bus links from Isleham and Wicken to be set up ready for its first train.
“Anything that moves it closer is fantastic. It’s absolutely what the town should be getting,” he said.
Soham’s station was closed in 1965 as part of Beeching’s closures and re-opening it has long been on the agenda of the combined authority. In October it estimated the final bill could be almost £22 million, a cost town councillor Charles Warner said was ‘staggering’.
“The disappointing thing is you won’t be able to go from Soham to Cambridge, you’ll have to go via Ely,” he said.
And Cllr Warner called on rail bosses to build a loop to connect Soham with Cambridge and to dual the track.
More by this authorGraham Turner