Fringe Box



Letter: Reopening the Railway Line to Cranleigh Should Be Given Serious Consideration

Published on: 11 Apr, 2023
Updated on: 11 Apr, 2023

From: David Smith

In response to: Public Meeting to Focus on Reopening Railway Line to Horsham

I can see demand growing considerably since the last studies to re-open the Guildford to Cranleigh line were carried out. There has been so much construction in Cranleigh in the last few years.

Some of these new houses are priced well over the million pound mark, so you have to ask where are all these people are working to pay for them? I imagine they are driving to Guildford or Godalming and getting the train from there to London.

With even more houses planned for Dunsfold it’s hard to see how the A281 will be able to cope and I therefore think serious consideration will have to be given to reopening this line.

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Responses to Letter: Reopening the Railway Line to Cranleigh Should Be Given Serious Consideration

  1. Mark Stamp Reply

    April 11, 2023 at 9:05 pm

    Transport both public and private in Guildford and the surrounding area is a mess. There seems to me a lack of coordination between the borough (Guildford and Waverly), the county council and also the national bodies (rail and highways).

    Who has the responsibility for an integrated transport plan for the Guildford area and making that work with the proposed developments?

  2. Ramsey Nagaty Reply

    April 11, 2023 at 10:32 pm

    A train, a light railway or an overhead pod system should all be considered. The old route is now used for joggers cyclists, ramblers and dog walkers etc. An overhead light railway or pod transport system would be a possible solution. All options need to be considered. The A281 cannot take more traffic at commuter times.

    Ramsey Nagaty is a GGG candidate for Shalford in the forthcoming GBC election.

    • Frank Phillipson Reply

      April 13, 2023 at 2:10 pm

      There needs to be a reinstated railway line from Cranleigh where railway rolling stock can use the existing railway tunnels into Guildford station. Any other type of transport such as buses, trams or pods, would need to use the A281 road corridor from Shalford into Guildford thereby just funnelling them back onto that road.

      The possibility of widening the A281 is not possible in many places. The use of a route from Trunley Heath Road across Shalford Common and along Dagley Lane only feeds back into the A281 at Guildford Rowing Club. Such a route would be opposed with it crossing the Common and by pedestrians and cyclists that use Dagley Lane.

      If on the A281 by the Guildford Rowing Club, these forms of transport, in order to connect with the railway station or bus station, would need to use the road and negotiate the one-way system, one of the causes of delays to begin with.

      As regards the Downs Link footpath, the Horsham to Guildford line was built so that at some later date the line could be double-tracked. With some diversions and adjustments, a path could be provided alongside a re-laid single-line railway as is the case at some other locations.

      • Keith Reeves Reply

        April 13, 2023 at 6:06 pm

        Re-opening of the line is a tempting idea. However, if I may be permitted to counter a couple of misconceptions. First, tram-trains can run on mainline railway networks. Second, the Horsham to Guildford line was built with sufficient space for double-tracking beneath overbridges, but not along the route. Considerable engineering works would be required to provide a cycle route alongside a re-opened line.

        Those interested may like to read this web page – – which, although dating from 2015, provides a useful summary of the reasons the line was closed (Beeching tends to get a lot of stick but in retrospect most of his recommendations were sound).

        It also summarises the assorted studies looking at re-opening. The remarks on likely patronage are cogent and tend not to be considered by those hoping for re-opening. Unless someone else has a smart idea, the scale of modal shift required to make re-opening viable is only likely to be achieved by either punitive anti-car measures (upsetting Joe Public) or vehicle ownership changes resulting from technology-driven disruptions.

  3. David Bond Reply

    April 12, 2023 at 10:03 am

    This is in my view essential, either as a single-track rail link, or a dedicated bus link. The current road links are becoming impossible. Yes we have a bus service but they get held up in the traffic too, so there’s no real gain there.

    I have lived in Cranleigh for 54 years and have seen the deterioration in all services. We were calling for this years ago as we could see the problems coming. Cranleigh’s infrastructure is, in my view, in danger of collapse.

  4. Simon Hall Reply

    April 15, 2023 at 7:03 am

    Perhaps a petition organised by Cranleigh, Bramley and Dunsfold might spark a wider debate to reinstall the Railway?

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