Threat to Chinnor extension as eviction notice served

By Phil Marsh

The Chinnor & Princes Risborough Railway has, without warning, been given just 10 working days to move seven items of rolling stock from the last 150 yards of the former Watlington branch.

The disputed section of track. PHIL MARSH
The disputed section of track. PHIL MARSH

The written legal threat was issued by solicitors acting for Cemex, owner of the former Chinnor cement works and associated land.

The seven items of rolling stock are stabled on the line up to the buffer stops, which has been used for over 25 years by the railway for stabling purposes. The items are a LMS, GWR Toad and Shark brake vans, a ferry wagon, an LMS Saloon chassis, a three-plank wagon and a mess and tool carriage.

Railway officials met representatives of Cemex and their land agent in the last week in October but say legal action was not mentioned. Volunteers were already planning to move the stock but not at such short notice.

It is thought that Cemex, which says it has annual sales of around £1 billion, wishes to redevelop the land or sell it to developers and the trackbed is required for road access. If the formation is blocked, it would mean a halt to the heritage line’s plans to extend to a new western terminus next to the M40 at Aston Rowant.

Read more in Issue 222 of Heritage Railway

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