All change for Northampton: Could a direct railway line between our town and Leicester be on track?

The Great Central Line that was scrapped in the 1960s could be dusted off and put to work once again

By Alastair Ulke
Thursday, 18th March 2021, 8:41 am
The "Reverse Beeching" scheme could reopen the Great Central line between Northampton and Leicester.
The "Reverse Beeching" scheme could reopen the Great Central line between Northampton and Leicester.

Northampton is on a list of towns that could be reconnected to other parts of the country by a scheme to reopen railway lines axed in the 1960s.

A Government scheme set up to reopen stations and lines that were scrapped under the 'Beeching' cuts is building speed.

Now, one of the lines tipped to have made it to the final consultation is the 'Great Central Railway' - a decommissioned route connecting Northampton to Leicester .


The route would run virtually alongside the M1 and could see the creation of three new stations to call at in Rugby, Lutterworth and Broughton Astley.

It would then link up with the Birmingham to Leicester line near the existing Narborough station.

The idea was formally submitted in the latest round of applications, which closed on March 5.

The proposed line would virtually run alongside the M1 and could create new stations at Lutterworth and Broughton Astley.

The £800m funding to bring back routes that were closed or became freight-only is the result of calls to reopen regional lines and move Britain towards a more sustainable transport network.

More than 5,000 miles of track and nearly 1,500 stations were closed between 1964 and 1970, following a report by British Railways chairman Dr Richard Beeching.

Another plan on the table includes reinstating the line between Bedford and Northampton.

Critics have warned the £800m budget set aside for the final projects will not be enough.

The panel for examining round three of the 'Ideas Fund' includes MP for Daventry and rail minister, Chris Heaton-Harris.