Work begins on important new railway station development

WORK has started on a new railway station in Warwickshire. The project for Kenilworth is part of a major rail enhancement scheme designed to encourage economic regeneration between Nuneaton and Leamington Spa.

The project is being funded by the Department for Transport (DfT), Warwickshire County Council, and Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP) as part of the £88.6m Growth Deal Package for Coventry and Warwickshire.

The contract to build the new station has been awarded to Graham Construction and following detailed design, construction is scheduled to be completed in 2017, with passenger services from Kenilworth operational later in the year.

Graham has experience in the rail infrastructure sector having worked on other significant rail projects such as Ibrox Station, Adelaide Depot and the award winning Tennison Road Bridge in Croydon. The project is being managed by Warwickshire County Council and SLC Rail.

The new station site was originally used as a railway station from 1844 to 1965. However, the station was closed to both goods and passenger traffic in 1965. The original station building was demolished a number of years after the station closed.

The new station, which includes a main station building and footbridge, has been designed in a ‘heritage’ style, incorporating design elements from the original station, following overwhelmingly public support for the move.

London Midland and Warwickshire County Council have been working together to develop the specification for the new station building, which will include a ticket office and also a community cafe.

Two original stained glass windows and a Kenilworth rail station sign salvaged from the town’s former station have been donated to Warwickshire County Council to be included in the new station design. The historic pieces were rescued and kept safe after they were saved from the demolition of the original station in the 1980s.

The new London Midland rail passenger service from Coventry to Leamington, anticipated to start later in 2017, will mean that people in Kenilworth will be able to access a wide number of destinations on the local, regional and national rail networks with just one change.

Key to the area’s growth plan, it is hoped that Kenilworth will become a town centre ‘destination’ station, encouraging tourists and shoppers to visit the town. At the same time, it is hoped the station will also improve access to job opportunities in the Nuneaton – Leamington Spa corridor.

Leo Martin, executive director, Graham Construction said: “We are delighted to have been awarded this contract by Warwickshire County Council and throughout the duration of this project we will work with the local supply chain as well as engaging with the local community to ensure there is minimal disruption.”

London Midland commercial director, Richard Brooks, said:  “We are really looking forward to running the new service. The new Kenilworth station will make journeys easier and simpler for people travelling between Coventry and Leamington.”