To: IOW council. South Western Trains, The new east Wight MP, UK Government.

Reinstate the railway to Ventnor

Photo by Umair Dingmar on Unsplash
 There have been several studies looking into the possibility of restoring the rail link to Wroxall and Ventnor. They have all failed because of cost and the disruption the work would cause. I think it is time to take another look, given the long-term problems with Ventnor’s unstable strata and its effect on the already limited road accesses. Much of the old rail route remains, including the tunnel. A new bridge from Shanklin station over the Landguard Rd would be required along with the restoration of stations at Wroxall and Ventnor. None of these things are impossible. The Victorians did it from scratch without electricity and the most basic of tools. The funds and the will to make this happen must be found if Ventnor is not to become a lost town accessable only by foot,bike or boat. 

Why is this important?

 This issue is very important to citizens of Ventnor and anyone who wishes or needs to travel here. The main road to Shanklin and Sandown is currently closed and the prospect of it reopening are slim. Meanwhile, the Undercliff Drive remains closed to traffic, belying its name, with no interest from the council in restoring it. Leaving just two transport access roads into the town. Soon the Graben will be closed, albeit temporary,but this problem has a habit of returning, leaving just the Whitwell  road and a major detour via Niton to anyone wishing to reach Shanklin or Sandown. The future of Ventnor lies in its shifting strata but letting it take control should not be an option. Maybe there is not much that can be done about roads damaged beyond safe use and who knows which will be next. But the rail link offers an inviting alternative to vehicle travel to some of the Islands major towns and the mainland ferry. There is also the dreaded net zero to consider. Electric vehicles are not the answer but electric trains could have a large part to play. Let us hope that one day the trains, so rudely taken, will come back to Ventnor, and with their success the rest of the Island’s towns may follow suit and once again see trains arriving in their newly built stations. 


Ventnor, UK

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