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Watford to St Albans trams announced

Plans to operate a tram service using the rail line between Watford and St. Albans have been announced by Transport Secretary Andrew Adonis and Hertfordshire County Council. The proposed improvements would enable passengers to travel between St Albans and Watford on a regular half-hourly tram and allow for the possibility of an even greater frequency of three trams per hour. The trams would replace the existing train service link, which currently operates on an irregular schedule with just one train every 45 minutes, providing a better service for around 450,000 passengers a year who currently use it.

Under the changes, which will now be subject to a 12 week DfT consultation, responsibility for the line would transfer from Network Rail to Hertfordshire Country Council, which would then put the service out to tender. Depending on the outcome of the consultation and the completion of legal and contractual issues, the new service could be up and running in 2011. The new service is also dependant on Network Rail agreeing to transfer control of the line and stations to Hertfordshire County Council on a long-term lease.

The 6.5 mile line, which is electrified at 25,000v AC overhead wire, runs from Watford Junction to St Albans Abbey Station. There are intermediate stations at Watford North, Garston, Bricket Wood, How Wood and Park Street and the end to end journey takes around 16 minutes.

31 October 2009

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