East West Railway - the new Varsity Line

The original Varsity Line – connecting Oxford and Cambridge by rail – ran until 1967, with some parts of the line being retained.

However, a new national infrastructure project hopes to bring the line back into use. If approved, the new line will be known as the East West Railway, and will upgrade existing railway routes, and build new infrastructure where needed.

According to the current proposals, the project will be completed in three stages:

Stage 1: Oxford to Bletchley

Work has already started on this section, which will connect Oxford and Bletchley. This will involve construction of a new section of railway between Bicester and Bletchley, with an expectation that trains will be able to run from Oxford to Milton Keynes by 2025.

Part of this stage will also see an upgrade to Bletchley station, and a new station for the Winslow area.

Future plans include an aspiration to upgrade the Aylesbury line which links to this section of track.

Stage 2: Oxford to Bedford

Once stage 1 has been completed, the line from Bletchley to Bedford will be upgraded, with Bedford station being completely remodelled.

Stage 3: Oxford to Cambridge

The final stage of the project will deliver the completion of the rail link between Oxford and Cambridge railway and will see services running between the two cities, via Bedford and Bletchley.

East West Railway updates

As with all national infrastructure schemes we advise on, Holmes & Hills will provide regular updates on the East West Railway scheme:

30th April 2024

Holmes & Hills take a look at the scope of the proposal and how this might affect landowners in the vicinity of the scheme.

Experts in Compulsory Purchase Orders

Holmes & Hills have a specialist team of compulsory purchase solicitors who deal with issues arising from these types of national infrastructure projects.

The team are currently advising clients on:

If you have any concerns over the impact of the East West Rail scheme on your land or property, or indeed any other compulsory purchase issue, our CPO solicitors are able to help.

Get specialist planning law advice

Call us on 01206 593933 today to speak with one of our specialist CPO team. Or complete the form below.

Key Contact

Michael Harman



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