June 2017 – We have been in recent contact with Bristol City Council who confirm that their new rail improvement feasibility study, incuding Ashton Gate station, is being scoped out with a view to be undertaken in the financial year 2017/18. The study was postponed from last year in the light of severe constraints on the Council’s budget. Council officials are hopeful that the work will get underway soon. We will continue to meet with them to help ensure this and to keep abreast of progress. Bedminster councillors Mark Bradshaw and Celia Phipps have summarised the current situation in the latest edition of The South Bristol Voice and all local councillors remain fully behind our campaign.
– Bristol City Council have issued a statement confirming their new study into the feasibility of various rail enhancements in the city including a new station at Ashton Gate. You can read the statement by clicking here
The study is now due to commence early in 2017 and be completed before the end of the year.
The Council’s consultants will look at a number of potential developments to our rail infrastructure and service ranging from improved journey frequencies; a new examination of the Henbury Loop; new stations at Ashton Gate, Lockleaze and St. Anne’s and identify the best ways of delivering the projects.
The study team are keen to talk to local organisations, businesses and interest groups such as ours. We hope to have our first meeting to press the case for Ashton Gate soon.
October 2016 – In February, Mayor George Ferguson and his cabinet (supported by all political parties on the Council) allocated £50,000 from this year’s capital budget to fund a new study and business case for an Ashton Gate station. Our group, Friends of Ashton Gate station presented a petition with over 5,000 signatures asking for a new station at the Council meeting in January. (The last consultant’s study for Bristol City Council concluded that there would be insufficient passengers to justify a new station).
Since Marvin Rees took over as Mayor in May, the Friends have met a Council transport officer and Councillor Mark Bradshaw (Cabinet Member in charge of transport) to discuss progress with the business case. The Council now plan to proceed with the business case study appointing new consultants from a list approved by Network Rail to carry out a more far reaching study to start in the next couple of months. The Council intend to consult local business particularly Bristol Sport and the Friends of Ashton Gate Station in October prior to the start of the study to ensure accurate and up to date local information is used in the calculation of future passenger forecasts.
Bristol City Council have sent us a footprint plan of the station (see here
) which will allow a station which includes a bay platform and spur line for terminating trains (ie football specials travelling to and from the Ashton Gate stadium.
February 2016 – The Friends of Ashton Gate Station recently met with George Ferguson, the Mayor of Bristol. Mr Ferguson expressed his full support for the creation of the new station and his belief that the previous project feasibility study did not address the particular circumstances of the area. He confirmed that a new Business Case study will be made during the financial year 2016/17.
The study will look specifically at the demand for the station predicted by local organisations and employers such as Babcock, Imperial, UWE and Bristol Sport. The Mayor expressed his desire for a station that will meet the match-day demands of the new Ashton Gate stadium. He will ensure the new study brief takes this requirement into account and makes recommendations for an appropriate station design as well as solutions for associated operating issues.
The Friends of Ashton Gate Station are pleased with this outcome. We will monitor the progress of the study and continue to lobby for the station. We remain confident that a positive business case will be demonstrated and the station will be built.
Jan 2015 – A report for Bristol City Council by consultants CM2Hill concludes that only 213 passenger trips would be taken in 2022 from a new Ashton Gate station if it were built. This number of passengers would be insufficient to achieve a cost benefit score of 2:1 (benefits twice costs) required by the Government for funding transport schemes though usage by visitors to the new Ashton Gate stadium have been ignored. Go to the Consultant’s Report page to see it and our summary.