Hundreds back call to re-open former Doncaster railway station

The propsed Askern Station

Hundreds have backed calls to re-open the former railway station in a Doncaster town, by confirming they would use it.

Over 1,000 people returned questionnaires which were issued to 5,000 homes in and around Askern asking them if they would take trains from the station - and a total of 839 of those who responded confirmed they would.

Members of the campaign group behind the survey, Friends of Askern Railway Station, now plan to take the findings to Doncaster Council and the South Yorkshrie Passenger Transport Authority.

Mayor of Askern Francis Jackson, a member of the FARS steering group. said: "It is now a case of presenting the findings to the transport authority. We think it quite clearly demonstrates a desire for this form of transport - the station would be used if it was re-opened.

"There is a lot of development in and around Askern - a lot of house building - which we think will be in the catchment area for a station. They will need transport to work, as there is no major employer in Askern.

"This shows 839 households would use the station - not just 839 people - so the numbers of users could be well in excess of that."

The group also hopes to put together a feasibility study. Mayor of Doncaster Ros Jones has already said she supports the proposal.

The largest number of forms were filled in in Askern, where 472 residents said they would use the station. But another 148 in Campsall said they would use it, along with 75 in Norton; 14 in Sutton; 40 in Kirk Smeaton; 29 in Little Smeaton; 20 in Moss; seven in Fenwick; eight in Burghwalls; four in Owston; six in Haywood; 11 in Thorpe in Balne; and five in Stubbs Walden.

Only 29 people who completed forms said they would not use the station.

The survey also showed 927 people would like to travel from the station to Leeds, Doncaster, Sheffield or London. A total of 920 said they would like to travel from Askern to York.

Friends of Askern Railway Station chairman Graham Moss said: “The results will be presented to Doncaster Council and the South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive in the hope that we can attract support and prove to an operator, whether that be Northern Rail or Aviva, that there is a viable service."

The proposals, which are being put forward by the Friends group, would mean a pre-modulated platform is put in place, with a bus shelter style structure to keep passengers dry.

They believe it could also have a ticket machine.

Using the existing tracks, they believe the station could be linked to Doncaster town centre, Leeds, and the Junction 32 shopping centre at Castleford. They believe it would even be possible to link up to London through the Bradford to London route.

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