RAIL user groups have backed MP Tim Farron’s renewed call for a passing loop to be constructed on the Lakes Line.

The loop would enable the number of trains running on the line to be doubled and provide a much needed boost to capacity, and Mr Farron this week told a meeting of top rail executives in Westminster the move would provide a huge boost to tourism in the area.

“After a miserable year for passengers on the Lakes Line, it’s absolutely imperative the line is given some much needed improvements,” Mr Farron told the Rail Delivery Group.

“The number one way that this could be done is to invest in a passing loop which means trains could run every half hour instead of just one every hour. This would not only be useful for local residents but would also provide an important boost to the local tourist industry.

“For too long, rail bosses have broken their promises to local people about better services and improvements to the line, now is the time for them to make up for their failures and invest in the Lakes.”

Rob Talbot, chair of the Lakes Line User Group, said the loop would be a massive fillip for the line after the blows of the shelving of electrification plans and the more recent news of Easter and Bank holiday shutdowns.

“The passing loop is a great opportunity to give a big boost to capacity on the Lakes Line and would be something to cheer at last after a lot of disappointment,” he said.

Mr Talbot said the loop would ideally be situated between Burneside and Staveley stations, approximately halfway down the 10 mile Oxenholme to Windermere line.

He explained that as the line was previously double track, land was available for the loop and he added that community groups in the area unanimously backed the plan.

Mr Talbot said the group’s preferred option was a ‘dynamic loop’ which allowed moving trains to pass each other.