I WAS interested to read Denis Smith’s letter to (HAS, Mar 19) regarding, among other things, the partial reopening of the Leamside Line. His suggestion of opening to Wardley from Belmont goes so far, but for what this rebuild would cost (£400 to £500m is a “gestimate”) whole reopening should be considered.

Councillor Carl Marshall is just one of a long line of public officials and others who have pontificated on this matter.

In 1990 Durham County Council asked for ideas regarding saving the line. I submitted a scheme to the DCC Economic Development Director of the Council. He replied that....”.....he was interested in my views”. This “can” received its first kicking into the long grass!

The present two-track mainline is getting towards overload and some bold and innovative thinking will have to be done to address this, not a description I associate with the DCC.

If the Leamside line was rebuilt and using the line from Ferryhill to Stockton and on to Northallerton this would allow a freight train for example to travel from Newcastle to Skelton Junction at York without once having to use the “up” fast line, a distance of approximately 85 miles. (York to Newcastle direct is 80 miles). Were this route fully electrified it could be used by LNER Azuma and other passenger services as a diversionary route if there were problems on the main line.

Also at Ferryhill there is the option to switch tracks back onto the mainline if required.

Let’s hope they find the “can”!

John Lambard, Wolsingham.