Construction of the Robin Hood Line, from Grives Lane towards Kingsway Bridge

Image ID: 21388

Construction of the Robin Hood Line, from Grives Lane towards Kingsway Bridge

Courtesy of Nottinghamshire Archives

Robin Hood Railway Line
Kirkby in Ashfield
England

The following information is extracted from 'Mansfield's Railways' by Paul Anderson and Jack Cupitt: The Midland Railway was formed in May 1844 and the Nottingham-Kirkby line opened on 2 Oct 1848 to coincide with the Nottingham Goose Fair. The Nottingham-Mansfield service opened a year later from the new Mansfield Central station. In March 1963 Dr. Beeching, Chairman of British Rail, produced his infamous report The Reshaping of British Railways. The major recommendation was the withdrawal of loss-making passenger services. Many rural lines had to go where where roads could ably cope, but the destruction of lines through built-up areas was a lack of foresight. The Nottingham-Mansfield-Worksop passenger service was withdrawn in October 1964, closing a route that had existed for 115 years and leaving Mansfield as the largest town in Britain without a railway station. The track remained since it was required for coal traffic but goods yards were relentlessly closed along with some of the older collieries. The Annesley Tunnel and its approach cuttings were gradually filled with spoil and refuse. On 27th October 1982, a meeting took place between the Railway Development Society and Mansfield District Council about the possibility of reinstating passenger trains to Mansfield. Despite their enthusiasm there was a lack of funding and so remained a dream for the next six years. By 1988 future prospects for the Nottinghamshire coalfield looked bleak and road traffic congestion was becoming a problem so Notts. County Council commissioned two studies. One by Leeds University concluded that there was a considerable demand for a rail service within a catchment area of 300,000 people; and the other study by British Rail concluded that the 140 year old Kirkby Tunnel was in remarkably good condition. European money for the project looked promising and in July 1990 an Act for the Newstead-Kirkby link was acquired by British Rail. The name Robin Hood Line was adopted and a consortium of local authorities gave the final go-ahead a year later. The line was developed in stages: Nottingham-Newstead service opened on 17 May 1993 with a station at Hucknall. Bulwell station opened a year later. Passenger services were extended from Newstead to Mansfield Woodhouse on 20 November 1995 with new stations at Sutton Parkway, Mansfield and Mansfield Woodhouse. Kirkby station was added a year later. Mansfield Woodhouse to Worksop re-opened for passengers on 25 May 1998 with new stations at Shirebrook, Langwith-Whaley Thorns, Creswell and Whitwell. The upgrading cost

Date: 1994

Organisation Reference: NCCW000673

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