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Hundreds have their say on future of Watford Met station
A listening exercise over the future closure of Watford Metropolitan Station has prompted around 200 responses from the public.
Representations from members of the public over the station's future were handed into London Transport Users Committee, following the close of the consultation on Friday.
The body, which is the capital’s travel watchdog, will now compile a report for the Mayor of London, who has the final say on the station’s fate. A decision is due to be made before September 1.
The station, in Cassiobury Park Avenue, could close as part of the Croxley Rail Link project, which will redirect the line from Croxley station to two new stations on Ascot Road and near Watford General Hospital then on to Watford High Street station before terminating at Watford Junction.
The project is still at an early stage but is hoped to be completed and running by 2016.
While the reaction to the scheme, and the potential economic benefits it will bring to Watford, have been overwhelmingly positive, a campaign is now underway to try to maintain a passenger service to Watford Met. Under the current proposals the station would remain open but would only be used for train storage.
Over half of the representations delivered to the London Transport Users Committee’s offices last week were collected by two Watford borough councillors for the Cassiobury area, George Derbyshire and Peter Jeffree. The Liberal Democrat pair also handed the committee three proposals for keeping the station open to passengers.
The first proposal is to keep the station open as the terminal stop for one in three trains coming to Watford via the Metropolitan Line.
The second is for a simple shuttle service between Watford Met and either Croxley or Rickmansworth stations.
The last of the proposals is for a more ambitious new service between Watford Met and Amersham, which the councillors have dubbed the North Curve.
The pair have argued this new service would open up the benefits of the Croxley Rail Link directly to other people in south west Hertfordshire and beyond.
Following the meeting at London Transport Users Committee’s offices last week, Councillor George Derbyshire said: "It is encouraging that our campaign has forced a public hearing.
"Peter Jeffree and I will be making strong arguments at the public hearing for the retention of the station and passenger service based on the options we have put forward.”