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Keswick to Penrith Railway Re-opening

Heavy rain and flooding over the weekend of  05 - 06 December 2015 caused havoc in Cumbria, paralysing road and rail transport.
Two bridges on the Keswick to Penrith route have been badly affected.
One was apparently hit by a caravan washed down the River Greta and was pushed off its abutments into the river.
At first sight this bridge appears relatively undamaged and recoverable.
The second bridge will be assessed further as access allows.
CKP Railways plc is in touch with relevant authorities about ways to re-instate the route. 

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Keswick Town Council is hosting a series of meetings of Local Authorities and Business groups to co-ordinate support and policies 


This will be a modern Railway, with passenger trains running direct to Keswick from other parts of the country.  The line will be independently built and managed by CKP Railways plc, which is locally based.

This type of independent operation, connecting into the National Rail Network, was made possible by the 1993 Railways Act.

It will be the first project in the UK to re-open and operate a complete line in this way for an all day, every day public service.


Virtual reality image of new bridge across the A66 at Beckses, west of Penruddock.

The route from Keswick to Penrith is rich in history and heritage, but it would not be appropriate to re-open it as a Heritage Railway.  The new Railway needs to provide fast inter-regional links to and from the North Lakes , providing transport for everyone to help the local economy expand, reduce pressures on car parking, reduce the impact of road traffic on major and minor roads in the Northern Lake District and reduce dependence on cars.

Benefits for Penrith will include reduced pressure on car parking by allowing people travelling to or from the Cumbrian Coast to use cars less and not need to park in Penrith.  Travel between Keswick, Penrith and Carlisle for work, education, health and social appointments, shopping and leisure will all be made quicker and easier for everyone.

More people travelling to and from Keswick by train will provide more customers for local public transport (buses, taxis and boats).  Many visitors to the area do not use cars during their stays and would happily come by train - further reducing traffic and parking problems as well as saving valuable fuel.

Having a connecting train service to Keswick will mean more main line trains stopping at Penrith on the West Coast Main line - reversing the trend of the last few years.

It is also the first step towards restoring fast, reliable and sustainable transport links to the Cumbrian Coast.

All feasibility, design and development work has been paid for by the Project's supporters. Approximately £ 400,000 has been raised from sales of Bonds.  The Directors are unpaid, ensuring that all funds received are spent on development work, not overheads.

CKP Railways plc is exploring various possible sources of funding for the final legal and construction stages. Government does not fund local Railway re-opening schemes, so the final package of support for this Railway is likely to be unusual and interesting.

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