Neighbouring towns and villages are being urged to get on board a plan to reopen Arthington train station.

The people of Pool-in-Wharfedale have already given an overwhelmingly positive response to proposals to re-open the station.

Of the 241 people who responded to a Pool Parish Council questionnaire nearly 96 per cent said they agreed with the idea, which would see platforms created south of Arhington Lane.

The council is now hoping the result will persuade neighbouring town and parish councils in Otley, Bramhope, Arthington and Harewood to get behind the scheme, which it believes could cost as little as £500,000 and be environmentally sustainable.

Pool councillor Steve Brady, who is driving the project, said: “We sent out 1,000 leaflets to 1,000 properties in Pool and of those we got 241 responses, 95.9 per cent of which were in favour of re-opening the station. That’s a vast, overwhelming majority.

“What we need to do now is find out from Arthington, Otley, Bramhope and Harewood what they think and see how many people from their areas might use the station on a daily and weekly basis.

“The letters, with a copy of the survey results, have just gone out to them so now we have to wait and see.

“Having a station would benefit our and the wider community, both in terms of tourism and businesses and in making the place more attractive to live in by letting people go out, or travel to their work, without needing a car.

“I appreciate Arthington has concerns about parking but we’re hoping to have meetings with them to discuss exactly how we can meet those concerns.

“We’ve spoken to a rail construction company about the cost of putting up two, pre-fabricated platforms of galvanised steel and believe we could build and surface a new Arthington station for about £500,000.

“There are a lot of options to be explored for funding, and if it is an eco-station, where foot and cycle traffic is high, it could attract grants.”

Pool Parish Council has met representatives from Metro, the West Yorkshire passenger transport authority, to discuss the proposal and a further site visit is now planned.

Arthington Parish Council, however, while in favour in principle of having a station, fears providing adequate parking could prove impossible and has so far refused to back the scheme.

Arthington parish chairman Coun Basil Thompson said: “If you simply ask people ‘would you like to see a station opened?’ then I think people in Arthington would say the same as those in Pool.

“But, apart from the question of whether they’d get any funding for it, I think parking will be the sticking point.

“However, we’ve had a copy of the results and are studying them and will respond to them when we have our next meeting on Thursday, October 7.”

Otley Town Council has also yet to formally discuss the plan, but Coun Lawrence Ross is not convinced it would bring major benefits to the town.

He said: “In principle it sounds good but it’s not going to bring big advantages to Otley, although it will give us a choice.

“Menston is more accessible from Otley than Arthington – it’s nearer, there’s a bus and the trains are less overcrowded than on the Harrogate to Leeds line.

“I think there are issues at Arthington, too, in terms of the lack of available parking space and the potential impact on traffic. And the trains on that line are often jam-packed, so that would have to be addressed by putting on an extra carriage.”

Coun Brady, though, believes only a small number of parking spaces would be needed if the station was linked to a proposed off-road walking and cycle route that would use the old line from Arthington to Otley, via Pool.

Arthington’s last railway station – based at a different site from the proposed new one – closed in 1965.