A DIRECT train link between Huddersfield and London could be step closer if a campaign group gets its way.
Plans are being considered for a link to the capital’s King’s Cross station.
If it is approved, trains would stop at Huddersfield and Mirfield and also in South Yorkshire.
The proposal has been suggested by the Grand Central Railway Company, whose aim is to open up more rail services in the area.
It is hoped the West Yorkshire link would boost business in the area.
Steven Leigh, senior policy adviser at the Mid Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, said: “It would be tremendous for Huddersfield and the Kirklees and Calderdale areas to have a direct train link to London.
“There is some serious business in our area and it would be beneficial not having to change at Leeds to get to the capital.
“It will make a huge difference to the area and be good for our economic prosperity as well.
“A large amount of business by local companies is still done in London and, as the saying goes, time is money and saving one hour on a train link would really help businesses.
“Currently the nearest stop is Wakefield and the service is heavily populated and full every day.
“A faster link would be most beneficial to our businessmen and women.”
Previous schemes have already proven to be a success in northern cities. A Sunderland-London link was launched in December and welcomed by passengers.
Ian Yeowart, managing director of Grand Central, said: “The development of our Sunderland service has shown what a boost new direct inter-city links are for towns and cities long removed from the inter-city network.
“We plan to use our knowledge and experience to bring these new additional services into operation where we can make a good economic case and look forward to working with the many stakeholders who would benefit from them.”
Currently, passengers wanting to travel to London from Huddersfield have to change at Wakefield or Leeds for a connecting service.
The Huddersfield-London plan is still at the evaluation stage, with passengers being asked their views on the proposal. It could take several years of negotiations with transport providers before the idea is approved.
A spokesman for Metro said: “This idea was suggested some time ago.
“If it comes off, then great. It will be a good boost for transport services in the area.
“But it is something they will have to work on and negotiate with the Government’s Transport Department and Network Rail.”