Saltford Station

Saltford station site, from the bridge over the cutting, looking towards Bath
Saltford station site, looking towards Bath
©Graham Ellis

Saltford was once served by two train stations: Kelston, on what is now the Bristol to Bath Railway Path, and Saltford, between Keynsham and Oldfield Park on the Great Western line from Bristol to Bath. This is the timeline for the campaign for reopening Saltford Station

1970

Saltford Station closes.

1993

Strategic Avon Rail Study (STARS) identifies Saltford Station as a candidate for reopening.

2000

Steer Davies Gleave publish Saltford Rail Station Study, a desk-based report to B&NES. They conclude:

Saltford Station has a relatively low scope population and would generate only in the region of 120 trips per day. In financial terms this would be insufficient to cover the costs of operating and serving the station… There is no realistic chance of the scheme making any meaningful contribution towards the capital costs and therefore will require external funding for the whole capital cost.

2011

Saltford Environmental Group (SEG) launches Saltford Station Campaign calling for reopening of the station. 140 people attend public meeting. Saltford Parish Council later declares overwhelming support for the campaign.

2012

Bath Spa University, which has 4,600 students and staff at its nearby at Newton Park campus, expresses support for reopening the train station:

Our travel survey taken in November 2011 showed that approximately 24% of staff and approximately 14% of students travel from Bristol and Keynsham… Provision of a station so close to the University would contribute to providing another sustainable travel mode for staff and students and visitor… We consider the economic, environmental and social case to reopen Saltford railway station to be very strong.

Director of Estates and Services, Bath Spa University

The proposed reopening receives support from the local MP and MEP, from Saltford and Corsham Parish Councils, and from Bath Spa Students’ Union.

SEG announce results of local petition organised in late 2011. Of those who speak to petitioners, well over 90% support reopening.

In June, Saltford is included in West of England Partnership’s funding bid for Greater Bristol Metro project. This project is later renamed MetroWest. Bath and North-East Somerset (B&NES) Cabinet agree budget of £100,000 to develop the business case for the station.

2013

B&NES Council consider other possible locations east of Keynsham.

2014

B&NES conduct residents’ survey, which concludes that nearly 70% of villagers support reopening while 2% oppose it. Over 60% of respondents said they would walk to the station.

Train passes site of Saltford Station
The site of Saltford station is well-integrated into the local footpath network
©Graham Ellis

2015

In the general election campaign, candidates from all major political parties express support for Saltford Station.

The winning candidate said:

I support the efforts of the Saltford Environment Group who have been championing the reopening of Saltford station for a number of years. There are numerous benefits for the local community in reopening the station, including the possibility of reducing the cost of the commute to Bristol or Bath, simplifying logistics for local businesses and reducing traffic on the roads.”

Jacob Rees-Mogg

Network Rail make ‘passive provision’ (leave room) for Saltford Station during Bristol Area Resignalling project.

Saltford Station Campaign wins Railfuture’s Oliver Lovell Award for Best New Group.

2019

Saltford Station is included in the West of England Combined Authority (WECA) Joint Local Transport Plan 4 (JLTP4):

During the life of JLTP4, we will consider extending services beyond Henbury and new stations to support the JSP at Charfield (1,200 homes), St Annes Park, Saltford, Ashton Gate and Constable Road, and new links to Thornbury and Bristol Airport. We will also work with planning colleagues to review the need to safeguard disused rail lines where they could have a future role to play.

JLTP4