In London, old railways never die, they just hibernate. Yesterday the Croxley Rail Link, a proposal to re-use a disused branch line in Hertfordshire as part of a Metropolitan line extension from Croxley to Watford Junction, was rubber-stamped by the government.
Under the plan, trains heading for Watford on the Metropolitan line will cross a new viaduct after leaving Croxley and join up with the Croxley Green branch line, which has been mothballed since 1996. The line will service new stations at Ascot Road and Watford Hospital (there are calls to name it Vicarage Road after the nearby football stadium), before joining up with the Overground route at Watford High Street and into Watford Junction. Trains would run to central London every ten minutes. The existing Metropolitan line terminus at Watford will be closed; if you live nearby, your commute is going to be become more complicated.
It's estimated the total construction costs will reach £118m, and the line will open in 2018.
Earlier this year Diamond Geezer took a walk along the disused branch line, revealing a landscape of shuttered ticket offices, overgrown platforms and superannuated signage.