Wetherby Leeds railway line might reopen. To horses.
A pressure group is seeking support to reopen the trackbed of the old Wetherby to Leeds railway line between Wetherby and Manston. The idea has come from the Collingham with Linton Footpath Action Group whose aim is to create a bridlepath along the route in a similar manner to the successful Harland Way, the name given to the footpath on the former railway line beyond Wetherby. The Harland Way starts at Spofforth and continues through Wetherby to Thorp Arch on the spur of the old railway route which once led on to Tadcaster and Church Fenton. The railway was the first victim of the Beeching cuts of the 1960s. Although its passenger traffic was low at stations such as Bardsey, the railway carried long distance freight and Newcastle-Liverpool expresses as well as playing a vital part in the war effort taking staff to the remote munitons factory at Thorp Park.
The route was identified by Sustrans, the national transport charity, as being an important missing link in a national cycle network. It would take years of hard work to bring the idea to fuition and require the approval of key landowners on the route but the action group has begun the work of lobbying to see if the idea might be feasible.