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Fylde Council has been successful in obtaining funding, sponsored by the Local MPs, from the Government’s Restoring Your Railway Ideas Fund. Stantec and Allan Rail have been commissioned to prepare a Strategic Outline Business Case (SOBC) for the South Fylde Line to improve transport services and infrastructure along the rail corridor.

The development of a business case is in line with the government guidance and is the first stage in making the case for investment through the Restoring Your Railways Ideas Fund.

Obtaining the views of the public to feed into the study is a vital part of the business case development.

The South Fylde Line is one of two railway lines connecting the coastal resort town of Blackpool to Preston and the wider UK national rail network.  The railway infrastructure between Kirkham & Wesham and Blackpool South limits the number of trains that can operate on the line to one per hour therefore and gives rise to reliability issues with the service.

A number of ‘core’ rail options involving improvements to the South Fylde Line to allow a half-hourly frequency will be assessed through this study.  However, it will also take a wider view considering options to improve public transport in the South Fylde area generally, including consideration of light rail / tram and bus options.

The study background, including the opportunity to complete a short survey to let us know how you use public transport in the South Fylde area and the problems that you encounter with it, is available at this link: South Fylde Public Engagement

Please provide your feedback as requested on the link.  Please note that when providing feedback, no personally identifiable information is requested or collected.

If you do not have access to the internet or would prefer a hard copy form to fill out, please contact Fiona Duncan: fiona.duncan@stantec.com or 0131 297 7019.  We will issue you with a paper-based form and reply-paid envelope. We can also complete the survey with you over the phone if you wish.

The feedback from the engagement will be used to understand current travel behaviour in the South Fylde area and the problems encountered when making journeys by public transport.  This evidence will be used to  feed into the development of the business case submitted to the Department for Transport seeking funding for new transport services and / or infrastructure.

The opportunity to view the information about the study and provide feedback will be available until 18th September 2021.

This study is being undertaken in partnership with a wider client group comprising of Blackpool Council, Lancashire County Council, Network Rail, Northern Railway, Community Rail Lancashire and the Department for Transport.

Fylde Council Leader, Councillor Karen Buckley said:

“I’d like to encourage as many people as possible to engage with the study so that local travel needs can be captured fully.  The rail link through Fylde to Preston is much needed for commuters and visitors alike but with it only being an hourly train the connections to/from Preston can easily be missed.  People are put off using the train because of the infrequent and unreliable service.  A half-hourly timetable would transform public transport and make the train journey a more viable option.”

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