Updated: Feb 10, 2021
Plans for a new train station at Marsh Barton have finally been approved – four years after trains should have been running. The planning application for the construction of a new two platform railway station to serve the Marsh Barton Industrial Estate has finally been approved by Devon County Council planners under delegated powers.
As well as the station, the scheme for Clapperbrook Lane East has a new cycleway, embankment, and footbridge, to link the station and to provide a dedicated pedestrian and cycle way. Funding has been secured to cover the current project estimate cost, excluding contingency, and Devon County Council’s cabinet will now meet early in 2021 to discuss, finalise and sign-off on committing the cash towards the build of the station.
Artist’s impression of the new Marsh Barton railway station
No details yet have been revealed as to when the work will begin and when the station will see trains stop, but when the application was submitted in July, it was hoped that the station will be open by the end of 2021.
A Devon County Council spokesman said: “Cabinet will meet early next year to discuss the revised scheme and, subject to approval, we will be able to confirm potential start dates.” Approving the scheme under delegated powers, planning officers said: “The proposal looks to provide a piece of infrastructure fundamental to the delivery of the transport strategy for Exeter. It facilitates sustainable travel, achieving a modal shift from private car to public transport in one of Exeter’s main employment areas, all of which is supported by planning policy.
“There are concerns that the proposal does not go far enough and include offsite improvements for cyclists are noted, however, this is not considered to outweigh the benefits associated with the delivery of the station. The proposals also provide significant improvement to the existing situation for pedestrians and cyclists using Clapperbrook Lane. While the loss of the trees and the impacts upon the local landscape are regrettable, this harm, along with any temporary disruption during construction, is considered to be outweighed by the public benefits of the proposal and therefore planning permission is granted.”
The delivery of the station has been a long-term aspiration for Devon County Council and forms part of the Devon Metro project, which encompasses a range of rail infrastructure improvements in the Exeter area, with the scheme for Marsh Barton station aimed to provide sustainable access to employment, retail and leisure opportunities.
The proposed station will have two platforms, with the eastern and western platforms served by trains to Newton Abbot and Exeter, respectively. Each platform will be 124 m long, sufficient to accommodate trains formed of up to 5 cars and will be 4m wide.
Each platform will have a waiting shelter, 10m wide by 1.5m deep, containing 12 stainless steel seats with arm rests, and a perch rail for four passengers, as well as one ticket vending machine on each platform, located inside the waiting shelters.
Two help points will be provided on each platform, one adjacent to the waiting shelter, and one in the emergency refuge area while, in addition to the help points, there will also be ‘next train indicators’ on each platform, providing audio and visual information regarding services.
Vehicular access to the station will be from Clapperbrook Lane East, with a new access road meeting the existing road at a junction on the eastern edge of the side, with access to the station for pedestrians and cyclists will be via paths which connect to the new footway/cycleway.
No parking spaces will be provided for general use, as it is expected the station will primarily serve as a destination, and it is intended to encourage use of sustainable modes of transport.