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Since the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway reopened the extension to Broadway, records have been tumbling in. They have now announced that they have seen passenger numbers double this year at Easter when compared with last Easter.
The heritage line reopened the brand new Broadway station and extension on Good Friday (30th March 2018).
Colin Fewell, the railway’s commercial director has confirmed that 6,300 passengers travelled on the extended line, compared to just over 3,100 last year.
The railway has been inundated with comments and congratulations from thousands of people, not just train enthusiasts, but local people seeing their local station opening once again.
More work remains though, such as signalling, footbridge installing, and building the second platform. Also, a new car park needs to be made for visitors.
What did the officials say?
Colin Fewell said:
“Despite the cold and wet, as was Easter last year, our trains have been filled with happy people enjoying the novelty of being among the first people this century, to travel on a public train service to or from Broadway.
“Passenger numbers are double what they were last Easter. Thanks to huge volunteer effort in rebuilding the railway and constructing a brand new station on the site of the original, which was demolished way back in 1963, we have enormously expanded the scope of our railway.
“Enthusiasm for seeing the track reach Broadway once again was amply demonstrated by the fact that our two share issues to pay for repair of bridges and complete the last mile of line to Broadway station were substantially over-subscribed.
‘Wychavon District Council has also strongly supported our growth because they can see the economic benefits the railway will bring to Broadway and the wider community.”
“We will be concentrating on this over the immediate future and improving the experience and enjoyment for our ever-increasing number of visitors,” added Colin Fewell.
“Lots of people are asking when we are going to extend our line further – for example, to Honeybourne, or south towards Cheltenham.
“But while these aspirations are certainly not ruled out, they aren’t going to happen any time soon – we have plenty to concentrate with on the 15 miles of line we now have!”