Questions raised over cost of town’s station

The chosen design for Kenilworth Railway Station.
The chosen design for Kenilworth Railway Station.

The cost of Kenilworth’s new station has been questioned with comparisons made to cheaper builds as diggers get ready to begin demolition.

But Warwickshire County Council is unable to provide a breakdown of costs - or an explanation of how the predicted £12.1 million will be spent while tendering is ongoing.

The long-awaited station rebuild has been given the £12.1 million price tag to include clearing works, the station build, and recreating footbridges and entrances for passengers on the site off Priory Road.

Resident and rail expert Alan Marshall has questioned the council’s projected figures, questioning why the project is expected to cost so much compared with other new station builds.

Calling for more details on the cost, he said: “It is, of course, welcome news that work is to start soon on Kenilworth’s new railway station. But why is it costing so much?

“New stations currently being developed between Oxford and Bicester have lower costs while being built for longer trains.

“The station most similar in scale to Kenilworth’s at Islip is costing only £2.5 million, little more than a fifth of the price quoted for our station.

“And the largest station between Oxford and Bicester – Water Eaton Parkway, which will provide parking for 425 cars and will also have two eight-car length platforms – is costed at £10 million.

“Why is Kenilworth’s station estimated to cost relatively so much more?”

A Warwickshire County Council spokesman said that specific costs or a breakdown of pricing for the project cannot be given at this time, the pricing is an estimate, and may come out as cheaper as part of the tendering process.

The Department for Transport’s New Stations Fund and Network Rail has awarded nearly £5 million towards the cost of construction, following a successful bid to the New Stations Fund.

Work is due to start this spring, with trains running by the end of 2016.