A COMMUNITY project to bring a railway station back to a Monmouthshire village has been given further funding to develop their plans.

Magor Action Group on Rail (MAGOR) have been campaigning for a walkway station to be reinstated in the village for more than five years.

Last year the group, together with Monmouthshire County Council, were given the green light by the Welsh Government to pursue a Governance for Railway Investment Project (GRIP) feasibility study.

And this week the council received £110,000 to move onto the third stage of the process, which MAGOR member Paul Turner described as an “early Christmas present”.

He said: “We’re over the moon, it’s a major step forward and a great show of confidence in what we’re doing.

“This project is about providing transport for the younger generation and for those who cannot afford to travel further to use the railway.

“Schools we have involved in the project are really keen to support it. It’s for the future just as much as it for us here today.”

The third GRIP stage, which involves reports on issues of performance, capacity, costs and topographical surveys, is expected to be completed by April next year.

The fourth phase will see the project, which has 10 committee members, work with the council to develop designs for the station.

Mr Turner told the Argus that the aim is for a station to return to the communities of Magor and Undy by 2021.

“We knew it was going to be a long haul when we started but once the designs are done and approved in a few years it shouldn’t take long for the station to be built,” he added.

For Mr Turner, who joined MAGOR in 2013, the pursuit is one fuelled by nostalgia having grown up using the old Magor station.

The station, which opened in the 1850s, was closed in 1964 as part of the widespread Beeching cuts.

Cllr Frances Taylor believes the support for the project is “well-deserved” and claims that the appetite for the walkway station continues to grow amongst residents.

“It’s been a privilege to support the MAGOR group over the past five years,” she said.

“I believe a station and community hub at the heart of our villages will support sustainable travel and community cohesion.

“The dedication and collective experience of the group has won credibility and support in Monmouthshire County Council and national government.”

Cllr Bryan Jones, cabinet member for transport at Monmouthshire County Council, said he was “delighted” that the Welsh Government has recognised the potential benefits of the scheme.

“The proposed Magor and Undy Walkway station is an innovative proposal for a new railway station to be delivered jointly with a community hub”, he said.

“Together with the funding provided by the county council and the community council, as well as the Railfuture and the MAGOR campaigns, this will allow us to progress the next stage of the development work.

“Our next step is to complete Network Rail’s GRIP stage three, which would conclude in selecting a preferred option. Our earlier work has indicated that a station at Magor is likely to be a great investment for the south of the county.”