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Railwatch 074 - December 1997

Thames Valley

By Chris Wright

CrossRail Buckinghamshire County Council and other local authorities met the CrossRail planning team in an attempt to breathe new life into the shelved project.

Progress Chiltern has introduced more late evening services from London, an extra early train for the Midlands and other improvements. Car security at Princes Risborough, Wendover and Bicester North is to be improved and capacity increased. Closed circuit TV is also to be installed at some stations.

Moving ahead Through tickets for train and bus have been introduced for Oxford and High Wycombe and may be extended to Haddenham and Aylesbury. The initiative comes from the Go-Ahead group which part-owns Thames Trains and bus companies in the area.

Welcome The potential for rail improvements is being examined by Aylesbury Vale Council which has welcomed the east-west rail study and are hoping it will include a link to Aylesbury and Winslow.

Rail corridor The M40 Rail Forum continues to consider the potential for rail in the "motorway corridor". The forum will examine the Oxford-Bicester line and the east-west link, the possibility of new stations at Aylesbury North, Kidlington, Kenilworth, Warwick Parkway and Bishops Itchington. It will also look at ways to improve access to airports, Wembley, Stratford, Leamington and Coventry and rail freight.

Bus stop There are plans to introduce a guided busway or a light railway for Oxford. Railtrack has been consulted as to how part of it could run beside the Oxford-Bicester rail line. The aim would be to create a ''network'' from Bicester to Oxford and Cowley with possible links to Abingdon and Witney.

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