James GRAY   Conservative MP for North Wiltshire

A group of MPs, officers and councillors from Wiltshire and Oxfordshire and the two LEPs met in Westminster yesterday afternoon to discuss exciting proposals to open a new rail line from Oxford to Bristol via Swindon and Bath.

The new rail line would be an extension of the already planned East-West line linking Oxford to Cambridge.

The new line could make possible new “parkway” stations at Royal Wootton Bassett and Corsham as well as Grove/Wantage.

The new group plans to meet regularly to develop Fuller proposals which could be taken forward by government.

North Wiltshire MP James Gray said:

“The proposal to extend the new link between Cambridge and Oxford to Bristol via Bath makes enormous economic sense for the whole region. That such a line might make possible the long-desired new stations at Royal Wootton Bassett and Corsham makes it doubly exciting.“

“I would have preferred to see any such new stations providing links at least to Reading, which will be the end of the new Crossrail line, perhaps to Paddington, but am told that the new electrified timetable makes that impossible at least for now. Let’s get the new stations built as part of the Oxford to Bristol run, and they may be useable on other routes in the future.”

“There are substantial hurdles still to be overcome, but this at least makes a first step towards our long-term goal of new stations in Bassett and Corsham.”