A NEW East Lancashire Railway station is to be built at Burrs Country Park.

The new stop, which will become the popular heritage railway’s seventh calling point, will soon enable visitors to the country park to board steam and diesel train services to Heywood, Bury, Summerseat, Ramsbottom, Irwell Vale and Rawtenstall.

Bury-based builders, Cheetham Hill Construction, have been appointed to manage the project and work on the station will start next month.

The station is scheduled to open in October.

Burrs Country currently attracts over 350,000 visitors each year and this figure is expected to increase with the development of the new station, which is the centre piece of Bury Council’s development strategy for the park.

Mike Kelly, East Lancashire Railway chairman, said that the new station will serve the needs of the local community and provide a boost to Bury's economy.

He said: “The community is really at the heart of the new station. We have worked with local residents, businesses and societies on the station’s development strategy over the past few years and hope that the community will find the new station an exciting and beneficial addition to the country park.

"We are very lucky to have such a fantastic asset on our doorstep and look forward to showcasing it to our passengers.

"As a heritage attraction, we hope that the new Burrs Country Park Station will encourage a new set of visitors to engage with the railway, understand its important history and heritage and the essential need to protect it for future generations."

It is hoped that the station will encourage more people to visit the park and explore its other attractions, including the Irwell Sculpture Trail, the Caravan Club, and the activity centre.

Hilary Marshall, chairman of Friends of Burrs Country Park, added: “We are delighted to work with the East Lancashire Railway on the new station project and hope that the halt will encourage even more people to explore the delights of the park.”