Rail crossings could close 20 minutes in hour

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INFORMATION sessions could start within a few months about a £280m rail upgrade which could see crossings being closed 20 minutes in every hour.

Network Rail is looking to plough the huge investment into the Doncaster to Peterborough line, which runs through Spalding, to increase its capacity for freight trains.

Work will start in March and take until Spring 2014.

Representatives have been meeting with parish councils, as well as representatives of the district council and Spalding Town Forum to bring them up to date with plans.

Chairman of Pinchbeck Parish Council Andrew Bowser said: “They told us that the 20 minutes in every hour downtime was several years away, but it raises serious concerns about traffic problems and makes it more important than ever to find a solution.”

The council also raised concerns about the effect on Spalding’s economy and in particular residents of Wygate Park as the Woolram Wygate crossing is already a bottleneck and will be more so when more than 2,500 new homes are built.

George Aley, chairman of Spalding Town Forum, said Network Rail was looking at holding events to inform the public about the project.

He said: “We had a meeting at which they gave us the background to this and asked us how they could best get the information across to the public.

“They did say that they expect crossings to be closed 12 minutes in every hour initially.

“Our biggest concern is that with the problems with traffic in the town already Network Rail needs to bring Lincolnshire County Council highways department in on any future discussions to ensure we are all working on the same plot.”