Martin Vickers MP calls for alternative rail route to Cleethorpes following Stainforth landslide
A LANDSLIDE which has disrupted travel for rail passengers could hit businesses relying on holiday trade this Easter.
Cleethorpes MP Martin Vickers has called on train operators and Government ministers to do all they can to encourage visitors to the resort by ensuring an alternative rail route is available – and his call has been backed by the tourism industry.
Rail services between Scunthorpe and Doncaster are suspended due to the landslide near a colliery in Stainforth and are being replaced by buses.
A spokesperson for Network Rail said the majority of Immingham traffic is now running via the Brigg line, with some empty trains coming back via Lincoln, but passengers face disruption for up to eight weeks.
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Mr Vickers has written to transport minister Simon Burns, warning of the impact, after being "inundated" with complaints from rail users in his constituency.
He said: "Without access to the major rail network for such a long period of time, there will be a significant impact on the local economy.
"Cleethorpes is, of course, a seaside resort and with the start of the spring season only weeks away, visitor numbers could well suffer without train services."
He also stressed the importance of the line between Cleethorpes and Manchester Airport for business and holidaymakers.
He has urged Mr Burns to lobby train operators to provide a direct rail service between Cleethorpes and London, and said the incident could be an opportunity to forge a direct link with London.
Mr Vickers asked the minister: "Can you influence East Midlands trains who operate this service to provide an improved one on this line?
"The present difficulties provide an ideal time to test the market by starting the 7.20am Lincoln to King's Cross service from Cleethorpes and extending the return 7.06pm King's Cross to Lincoln service through to the resort."