Banburyshire Rambles Photo-Journal: Rambles Blog Scenes Index Scenes Map HS2 About     FRAW

Date:   Monday 11th June 2018

Index:   Central Area

Map:   Go to OS Map

HS2 route plan: Sheet 30

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Last Chance (HS)To See:

Featherbed Lane, Mixbury

The unused Great Central line

scene 023 map The now quiet Featherbed Lane once connected the village of Mixbury to its nearest station, Fulwell and Westbury, half-a-mile away on the Banbury to Verney Junction Branch Line. This bridge carries the lane over the route of the Great Central Railway, with a local station at Finmere, 3 miles away. Now, in the field beyond the bridge, HS2 will speed past in a shallow cutting.

It's not too quiet here. In the distance the A43 trunk road, and the A421 feeder from the east, create a low level hum.

From this point south, HS2 moves onto the course of the former Great Central Railway, crossing the undulating hills down towards the Aylesbury vale. Other than severing the wildlife corridor that the former Great Central represents, the impact at this point will not be excessive.

The question this site throws up is the greater issue of 'who is HS2 for?'. Once served by two railways stations within 3 miles, today the distance to the nearest stations is variously 10, 11, 15 or 18 miles away. Would that multi-billion cost of HS2 be far more beneficial if spent on low speed projects than the single high speed route? The previous rail routes in the area served the local area; creating a definable local cost-benefit. HS2 does not do this.