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Western rail link to Heathrow backed by public

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A rail link connecting the Great Western Main Line to Heathrow has received strong public support in the latest consultation round.

Out of the 1,333 public responses, 72% of respondents backed Network Rail’s proposed 6.5km link from Reading and Slough to London received public support.

The link would allow passengers throughout the West, and beyond, to travel directly to Heathrow Airport from Reading, Twyford, Maidenhead and Slough, without having to change at London Paddington.

Network Rail Western route managing director Mark Langman said: “We are delighted that the proposals have been given the overwhelming support of the public, businesses and stakeholders.

“We have also heard the concerns of some local residents so will continue to work hard to make sure our final plans, which will be submitted for consent in 2019, work with other developments in the area.”

The proposed Western Rail Link to Heathrow would leave the Great Western Main Line between Langley and Iver via a short stretch of open railway before entering a new 5km tunnel. The tunnel would pass under Richings Park and Colnbrook and then join existing underground rail lines at Heathrow Terminal 5.

It is one of several rail link proposals recently tabled to connect to Heathrow.

Last week New Civil Engineer revealed that the proposed link from Windsor to the airport had been “rejected outright” by the Department of Transport following its calls for market led proposals. 

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