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Network Rail turn down plans for Kingsnorth train station

By Caitlin Webb, local democracy reporter

A village's dream of a small train stop could be abandoned due to lack of support.

Ashford Borough Council is set to abandon plans for a rail halt - a small unmanned station - at Kingsnorth after failing to persuade Network Rail and the train operator.

The move came after the council approved plans for almost 1,000 homes to be built in village.

There are concerns a halt would hinder work to make trains more punctual
There are concerns a halt would hinder work to make trains more punctual

Yet the idea is set to be dropped as there "is no prospect of a Kingsnorth rail halt being delivered in the foreseeable future" as the rail authorities claim it would become a "Park & Ride" service.

The rail halt would have been a small stop on the Ashford-Hasting route funded through a section 106 agreement with the developers of the 353-home project at Bridgefields.

But Network Rail was not persuaded there was a "viable business case" for the plans as it is too close to Ashford International.

It is also believed it would add time to commuters' journeys when there is a desire for the punctuality of trains to be improved on the route.

Frustrated rail users have formed a Marshlink Action Group to campaign for more reliable services including later trains and two trains per hour in each direction.

Councillors are due to discuss whether to abandon these plans at the joint transportation board tomorrow evening.

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