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Sceptics dismiss grand rail idea

Published: 12 Dec 2009 09:002 comments

GRAND plans to build a new train station and business centre in Chalvey have been dismissed by the council and some unconvinced residents.

The £200m plan by the Windsor Link Railway company to completely transform the infrastructure of one of the most deprived wards in Slough by connecting it to Heathrow via Windsor, has been branded as unrealistic by the authority which is backing another set of proposlas.

A spokeswoman said: "Slough Borough Council is aware of the idea to link Windsor and Heathrow via Chalvey. However, we will be pursuing our own proposals with the Berkshire Strategic Transport Forum (BSTF), of which the council is an integral member, commissioned by Atkins to undertake a detailed analysis of providing a direct western facing connection to Heathrow via the Great Western Main Line. "

Resident Rory Haines is also unconvinced with the proposals to build the new development on a site currently occupied by an electricity sub-station and council tip.

He added: "The whole proposal is a fantasy. Anyone who lives in Chalvey will know that the space to build a new railway station with a multistorey car park and coach park does not exist on this site."

Company managing director George Bathurst admits that the council is not willing to hear his proposals, but remains confident that his dream could soon become a reality.

He said: "There are bound to be sceptics while the plans are in their early stages. Slough council has not expressed an interest but many potential investors have, including banks and a number of private businesses. Some people have raised doubts but overall, I have received a lot of support for the idea."

Mr Bathurst hopes to send his plans off to the Secretary of State for Transport next summer. If approved, the project would be finished in four to five years. To find out more about the proposals visit www.windsorlink.co.uk

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