Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Two million will use the Tarka Line

10:27 28 October 2013

Barnstaple Station should be able to take more than one train at a time - among other measures proposed to cope with an estimated two million passengers by 2025.

Barnstaple Station should be able to take more than one train at a time - among other measures proposed to cope with an estimated two million passengers by 2025.


Urgent upgrades needed to cope with huge surge in demand for North Devon’s only rail link, says new study.

MAJOR investment will be needed to cope with the two million people who will be using North Devon’s Tarka Line by 2025, a local rail group has warned.

The Tarka Rail Association says conservative estimates show the number of journeys on the Barnstaple to Exeter line will increase threefold from current levels of 544,000 and urgent changes are needed.

It has published a strategy calling on Devon County Council, Network Rail and First Great Western or the future franchise holder to take action.

Severe overcrowding needs to be addressed, it says - the busiest trains should be lengthened and morning or afternoon gaps in the existing service need plugging.

Faster end-to-end journeys, four coach trains and more passing loops to enable a twice hourly service are also proposed.

A Saturday late evening and Sunday early morning service should be introduced, while measures should be taken to reduce journey times, such as installing new track plus automatic level crossings at Salmon Pool and Umberleigh.

Other suggestions include van extended platform at Eggesford plus a car park, as well as raised platforms at Copplestone and Newton St Cyres.

It says all this is needed because more than 14,750 new homes are planned along the Tarka Line’s catchment area and the North Devon population is expected to rise by a fifth in the next decade.

“With no plans to address increasing congestion along the A361 North Devon Link Road, the effective operation of the Tarka Line becomes more crucial by the day,” said John Burch, chairman of the association.

Co-author John Phillips said there was no question the rail link was going prove ‘even more vital’ in the future: “The County Council, Network Rail and First Great Western already appreciate how important the Barnstaple to Exeter line is in relation to the local network based on Exeter,” he added.

“What we’ve got to do now is put our case before the Department of Transport and we’ll be working with our friends in Parliament to make sure that message is thoroughly understood in Whitehall.”

The strategy can now be viewed online at


Other News Stories

John Balls with Clovelly caught lobsters.

Lobster fisherman has reached a landmark in his bid to help conservation at Clovelly

Read more
56 minutes ago
Is the row over dogs back at Instow beach?

Parish Council meeting on Thursday, October 15 to review the situation

Read more
Residents protest against the plans at the site in March. Picture: Jim Bell

Benefits outweigh the harm, says Government inspector

Read more
Get your chickens an Eglu and help raise money for the British Hen Welfare Trust today (Friday).

Support for British Hen Welfare Trust from the Omlet Eglu

Read more
Police are trying to track the car in this picture

The owner of a blue Nissan Almeira could have vital information on collision that killed Natalie Jones, say police

Read more

September saw a 4.9 per cent increase in crime in Barnstaple on the same period last year.

Read more
Portmore's Colin and Mandy Webber presented the cheque to representatives of the club's chosen charities

Five local charities are to benefit from another year of fundraising at Portmore Golf Club.

Read more
Yesterday, 17:17

Fire called out to help in the early hours of Thursday morning

Read more
Yesterday, 13:20
A busy Woolacombe Bay. North Devon has seen a welcome late summer boost in tourism this year

Tourism sectors across the region are reaping the benefits as a result of the late summer sunshine.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:06
Giant veg grower David Maund picked up a number of placings at the Malvern Autumn Show

A giant-vegetable grower from Bideford has returned from a national competition with a prize haul almost as big as some of his extraordinary exhibits.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 10°C

Most Read News

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Search for a job in Devon

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications