Go-ahead for 'Cutty Sark' DLR station

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(First Edition) HOPES were raised last night that a station would be built near the clipper the Cutty Sark, a world-famous tourist attraction at Greenwich, south-east London, after the Government said it could go ahead, provided that the pounds 14m cost was met by private sources, writes Colin Brown.

The station was reinstated in plans to extend the Docklands Light Railway by John Gummer, the Secretary of State for the Environment, when he announced the privatisation of the DLR. The borough of Greenwich had made representations.

'I am willing to allow more time for local interests to finalise a financing package of their own,' Mr Gummer said. 'My decision therefore is that if funding is fully and unconditionally committed by the time DLR has prequalified bidders for the project next January, the project may go ahead to full tendering with Cutty Sark station included.'

But he added: 'There is no question of the Government providing a grant or subsidy towards a Cutty Sark station.'

If a station is not built there, the nearest station on the DLR line will remain across the Thames at Island Gardens on the Isle of Dogs. It can be reached through a foot tunnel under the river. Mr Gummer said the extension of the line to the historic waterfront would 'provide dramatically improved access to the various important tourist destinations in the area'.

It was feared neither of the stations would be financially viable, but the Island Gardens station was reinstated in the scheme after a ruling was made that to omit it would breach an undertaking given to Parliament by the promoters of the DLR (Lewisham) Act 1993.