Have your say on the future of Bicester’s London Road level crossing

Deadline for East West Rail consultation is 9 June

Residents are being urged to make their voices heard on alternative ways for vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians to cross a railway in Bicester before the deadline of 9 June.

The development of East West Rail (EWR), linking Oxford with Cambridge via Milton Keynes and Bedford, will mean trains passing more frequently through Bicester’s London Road level crossing – drastically reducing the amount of time the level crossing will be open to vehicles. The barriers could be down for up to 50 minutes in every hour.

In its consultation document ‘Making meaningful connections, East West Railway Company (EWR Co) said: “We appreciate that increased closure of the level crossing would be very disruptive to all those using London Road, the surrounding area, and could potentially affect those living, working and visiting Bicester. That’s why we are investigating a number of options to improve access across the railway.”

This is the first consultation on the future of London Road level crossing since EWR Co became responsible for developing the whole railway. Before that, a government inspector overseeing the first two phases of the work, concluded that these stages would not trigger the need for a solution to the London Road level crossing issue.

EWR Co is seeking public feedback, through a non-statutory consultation, on the six options it is considering:

  1. An accessible bridge for non-motorised users
  2. A road underpass at London Road
  3. A road bridge at London Road
  4. A road underpass alongside London Road
  5. A road bridge alongside London Road
  6. Alternative road crossing locations

Eric Owens, Oxfordshire County Council’s Assistant Director for Growth and Place, said: “It is vital that people have their say on what they want to happen with the level crossing so that EWR Company’s decision is as informed as it can be.”

As part of the consultation, there will be an online public event organised by EWR Co on Friday 14 May from 11am - 12 noon to look at issues raised by the Oxford-Bicester stretch, including the London Road crossing. People are invited to join the meeting online on the day.

They are also holding a number of public live chats events throughout the consultation, including on Saturdays and in the evenings. You can find more information about these sessions at the bottom of the consultation site.

In addition, you can contact EWR Co at any point throughout the consultation by emailing contact@eastwestrail.co.uk or calling 0330 1340067.

How to respond to this consultation

  • A full list of consultation documents and the feedback form can be found on the East West Rail website: www.eastwestrail.co.uk
  • The closing date for responses is 9 June. Comments need to reach EWR Co. on or before this date.
  • People can share their views using the online feedback form which can be found at www.eastwestrail.co.uk/feedback
  • Alternatively, the feedback form can be downloaded from the EWR website, and people can then post it to Freepost EAST WEST RAIL or email it to consultation@eastwestrail.co.uk
  • The EWR Co telephone line will be available throughout the consultation period to enable those not wanting or not able to engage online or in writing, to speak to members of the EWR project team. The telephone number is 0330 134 0067.

When EWR Co was created in 2018, it was given some specific challenges by the secretary of state for transport, including looking at the work already under way between Oxford and Bedford, to seek improvements in delivery, and properly integrate the different sections of the project to get the best results for all communities right the way from Oxford to Cambridge. 

In January this year, EWR Co was handed over the work already done by Network Rail, the Department for Transport and the East West Rail Alliance between Oxford and Bletchley, and following further development activity have presented a number of proposals to ensure EWR can deliver a full service along the whole route.