Planned Buckinghamshire development could contribute £15m to £150m East-West railway

Plans to use part of the profit from building an eco-town in Buckinghamshire to help pay for a rail link between Oxford and Milton Keynes are being discussed.

If given the go-ahead, the development of a 5,000-home eco-town in the Aylesbury Vale, north of Winslow, could contribute about £15m towards the £150m East-West rail link, which would run through the town.

The proposal for the eco-town is from developer Fox Land, and is one of a number of developments on the route of the proposed line that could help pay construction costs.

Jane Hamilton, chief operating officer of housing growth delivery body, the Milton Keynes Partnership, said: “The proposals for Winslow are one of a number that are relevant to the development of the East-West rail link. The eco-town proposal is for the local authority to decide, but the growth plans for Milton Keynes are dependent on the East-West rail going ahead.”

Hamilton said a report on the feasibility and funding for the link would be published within a month. Regeneration agency English Partnerships is leading a consortium of local authorities interested in the rail link, which they say can be funded without central government cash.

Geoff Lansbury, director at Fox Land, said that he was in talks with EP and the central government over the eco-town proposal and the possibility of it contributing £3,000 per house to the rail line.

He said: “We think we’re unique in offering the possibility of an eco-town helping the provision of major rail infrastructure.”

Local MP John Bercow has raised concerns over whether the eco-town would be appropriate for the area.