Tavistock to Bere Alston railway and associated multi-use trails
Devon County Council has an aspiration to re-open the railway line between Tavistock and Bere Alston and provide associated multi-use trails in the surrounding area.
The re-opening of this section of line would provide a new, sustainable link between Tavistock and Plymouth for commuter journeys, help to minimise traffic on the A386, link Tavistock to the national rail network and also provide an alternative travel option for leisure, education and retail journeys.
The multi-use trails will improve access to the surrounding area, which is designated as the Tamar Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and is part of the Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape World Heritage Site.
The scheme is a nationally significant infrastructure project due to its scale, and as such will require development consent from the Secretary of State for Transport, with the Planning Inspectorate acting on his behalf.
Please see this plan which shows the scheme proposals. Please note that this plan is an updated version showing a corrected alignment of proposed multi-use trail ‘Route E’.
Environmental impact assessment
Because this project is a nationally significant infrastructure project, Devon County Council must apply to the Secretary of State for consent. The Planning Inspectorate will process this application on his behalf.
The first step of the application process is to ask the Secretary of State whether a full environmental impact assessment (EIA) is required (the ‘screening’ stage), and the second step is to set out the scope of the assessments needed for the EIA (the ‘scoping’ stage).
A Devon County Council report was submitted to the inspectorate in late October 2014 to the inspectorate to trigger both the screening and scoping stages. This screening/scoping report is available here although please note that it is not available for public consultation.
The Secretary of State has now determined that a full EIA will be required and has issued a scoping opinion, which sets out the scope of surveys to be undertaken.
County Council Cabinet Committee gives go ahead to proceed
The County Council Cabinet Committee approved a report in July 2014 approving the scheme to be taken through the development consent process and to develop a network of trails linking Tavistock to the Tamar Trails Centre as part of the project. The report is available to view here.
Documents and evidence
Option assessment report
Devon County Council has completed the Option Assessment Report for the project. This sets out the various transport scheme options and alternatives that have been considered and shows that the railway-re-instatement provides the best value for money over other interventions.
Appraisal specification report
Devon county council has also completed the Appraisal Specification Report, which has been prepared to inform decision makers and stakeholders on how the economic, environmental, social and distributional and operational assessments will be undertaken and how they will be supported by the traffic modelling work, taking account of budgetary, programme, political, environmental and spatial constraints.
A public consultation took place between 25 January and 8 February 2013. The consultation has now closed although there will be additional consultation in future. The consultation provided the public and interested stakeholders with further information regarding the project and has helped the County Council to understand the views of the local community. These views will be used to inform the development of the project in future.
Consultation feedback is included in the report below:
Although the consultation has now closed, the consultation documentation is still available to view below:
If you have any enquiries in relation to the project please contact the Transport Team using the details below:
- By email: email@example.com
- By telephone: 0345 155 1004