Train stations needed now

‘Reopen Horsforth and Arthington stations to ease traffic,’ says Wharfedale MP

The old station buildings at Arthington, which closed in 1965 under the Beeching cuts.

Greg Mulholland, MP for Leeds North West, which includes Horsforth and Arthington

First published in News Ilkley Gazette: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

An MP is calling on transport bosses to take bids to reopen railway stations at Arthington and Horsforth Woodside seriously.

Greg Mulholland (Lib Dem, Leeds North West) says both proposals could form part of the solution to local transport problems, and must be considered properly by Metro.

The West Yorkshire Integrated Transport Authority’s Scrutiny Study is not yet complete, but campaigners fear that the Horsforth Woodside and Arthington station bids have already been discounted by the Passenger Transport Executive, Metro.

Mr Mulholland says opening both stations – Horsforth Woodside would progress once the quarry site is developed – would allow more commuters and shoppers to access Leeds without using their cars.

And the MP says after that happens, and the line is electrified, there could be a mixture of express, limited-stop trains and others that stop at all the stations.

He said: “I have written to Metro to urge them to reconsider opening Arthington and Horsforth Woodside stations and have since learned that the bids are still under review.

“Both former stations could provide enhanced transport links to local residents, and with the current proposed housing developments it is apparent that the present infrastructure will soon be insufficient.

“I hope Metro reconsiders these bids as there are very clear benefits.”

Campaigner Steve Brady, of Arthington Station Action Group, added: “It was a sad day in 1965 when Arthington Station and the line through to Otley closed.

“Since then the Wharfe Valley has seen dramatic increases in road traffic caused by things like the airport expansion and the effect of declining public transport links.

“We are now faced with the Miller Homes development at Bramhope, the Garnett’s Mill development in Otley, and the prospect of similar schemes in both Pool-in-Wharfedale and to the east of Otley.

“I have a message for the transport chiefs of West Yorkshire – the joke’s over now guys; you need to do something conducive to alleviating the traffic problems in our area and Arthington Station would be a good place to start.”

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