Broadway Railway Station Car Park opening
Broadway Railway Station Car Park officially opened today (5 March) in the presence of civic dignitaries and volunteers from Wychavon and the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway (GWSR).
The GWSR reopened Broadway station at Easter 2018 after almost 60 years of closure. Since then it has carried more than 144,000 passengers – an increase of over 42% compared with the previous year. This demonstrates the additional attractiveness of the line extension to Broadway and the heritage tourist offering that, in turn, brings visitors into the area and supports the local economy.
The investment from Wychavon of £650,000 in the car park on land provided by the GWSR will meet the demand for visitor parking at the station. It is also designed to discourage parking on the main road and provide safe parking for those having a day out on the steam railway. The investment also provides a good financial return for Wychavon taxpayers.
A total of 85 spaces have been created by Wychavon, along with a pleasant grassy area next to the line that can be used for picnics. Later this year electric vehicle charging units will be installed.
The parking charges are from 50p for half an hour up to £5.00 for 10 hours. Those purchasing a £5.00 parking ticket can receive a £3.00 refund from GWSR against the purchase of one train ticket on that same day. Pay and display parking tickets can be purchased with cash or by using the RingGo app, as provided in other Wychavon car parks.
Cllr. Richard Morris, Deputy Leader at Wychavon said "This is a fantastic investment in a popular tourist attraction and is a great boost for the local economy. The incredible work of the volunteers to keep this historic heritage offering thriving is humbling to see and I'm so pleased that we can support it along with the business and tourist economy."
Richard Johnson, volunteer chairman of GWSR Plc added: "The railway's success since we extended the line and opened Broadway station – which is a brand new replacement of the one demolished by British Railways in 1963, three years after it closed – has been astonishing. Our first train from Cheltenham to Broadway is often full of travellers who then visit the village and enjoy all that it offers. Anecdotally, traders tell us that the railway has made a positive impact.
"It has been a pleasure working with Wychavon to come up with this car parking solution. It means that visitors can more easily start their journey from Broadway, perhaps returning to spend time in the village during the evening.
"I'm absolutely delighted that our railway, which is almost entirely run by volunteers, has had such a positive impact on the local community.
The car park has been carefully designed and constructed using gravel and planting to be sympathetic to the local, environment.