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All aboard! New heritage railway set to open in Gloucestershire

A new heritage railway could soon be steaming in to action in the south of Gloucestershire.

The Vale of Berkeley Railway have submitted plans to Stroud District Council to build two stations on the former Sharpness Branch line.

The line, which was taken out of passenger service during the Beeching cuts of the 1960s has remained intact since.

However, since then the only rolling stock to use the track are nuclear flask carrying trains who serviced the Berkeley power station.

But the volunteer-run railway, who currently operate out of an old engine shed at Sharpness Docks have now submitted plans to build stations at both Sharpness and Berkeley.

Both stations would be fairly simple, with raised platforms to the western and southern edge of the railway. Both would have a small covered shelter and accessible toilets.

Car parking spaces with associated pathways are also included in the plans.

The Vale of Berkeley railway was established in 2013 with the aim of bringing the line from Sharpness to Berekely Road back into life.

The aim is to put in place a loop to allow engines to turn at Berkeley Pad, to create a viable two-way railway between Sharpness and Berkeley.

The railway has charitable status and its website states: "Our aim is to reopen the Sharpness branch line, in Gloucestershire, to passengers as a heritage railway tourist attraction.

We have established an engineering facility based in the old Engine Shed by the docks in order to restore heritage locomotives, rolling stock and other suitable items from a by-gone era and to serve as an initial base for the Vale of Berkeley Railway.

"Eventually we hope to restore the original Sharpness station site, and start up a Heritage Railway operation towards Berkeley."

The station at Berkeley was last used in 1960, while the newtown station in Sharpness hasn't served passengers since the late 1800s.

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