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Fears over future of Marlow station if housing approved
THE COMPANY responsible for the railway line in Marlow has raised further doubts over plans for a housing development at the station.
Network Rail wrote to Wycombe District Council to object to the application for nine houses adjacent to the tracks on Station Approach.
Fears centre over whether heavy plant and equipment needed to work on the tracks will be able to access the site once the houses are built.
And with plans in motion to electrify the track at Marlow, strict rules state there should be no buildings within six metres of the outer rail.
Network Rail also stated that First Great Western, which manages the station, has registered its opposition over fears the houses would “have an adverse effect on the station environment” and hamper future station expansion.
Doubts were also raised about whether plans for drainage have been properly taken into account.
Letters have already flooded in to the council from residents over the plans, with most opposed on the grounds that nearby houses will be overshadowed.
There are also worries over extra traffic in the bottleneck near the station.
But applicant ML Developments insists housing is a good use for the site, which is classified as an employment site but has remained empty for years.
And supporters of the scheme have complained of the lack of new housing projects in the town, welcoming a building to replace the disused scrubland that currently greets visitors to Marlow.
Rail users’ group Maidenhead and Marlow Passengers’ Association wrote to WDC last month to highlight that this building project may stand in the way of the electrification of the tracks.
Chairman Susan Morrison said: “Our job is to ensure Marlow station and service are sustainable and continuously improved, not diminished or abandoned.
“It would be sad if something was done in the format of this housing development now which cannot be undone if the result hurts the future viability of the railways to Marlow.”
Network Rail stated that its objections will be withdrawn if site surveys show its concerns to be unfounded. WDC has not yet ruled on the application.