A LONG-running campaign for a new railway station in the Langport area has moved a step closer.

Somerton and Frome MP David Warburton, who has been calling for the station for seven years, has welcomed a £50,000 grant towards a feasibility study.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced the handout to Parliament as part of his Spending Review.

Mr Warburton, who has represented the constituency since 2015, said a new station in the Somerton/Langport area has "potential to revolutionise the infrastructure and economy by providing a direct high-speed rail link for Somerset".

He took up the campaign for a station in 2013 when he was the Parliamentary candidate and since being elected MP he has pushed the Government for funding for the project.

A detailed bid was submitted to the Government’s Restoring Your Railways New Ideas Fund in May this year.

Mr Warburton said: "After seven years campaigning for a new station to be re-opened in the Somerton-Langport area, I’m absolutely thrilled to learn that feasibility funding has now been granted and we can finally push forward this fantastic new initiative.

"The 27 miles between Castle Cary and Taunton is the longest stretch of high-speed railway line in the South West with no station.

"A new station in this area will deliver enormous benefits for the economy, the infrastructure and local residents, and I’m delighted that with an immediate £50,000 feasibility grant, this scheme now has the real potential to be accomplished.

"Thanks to all the hard work of so many local groups and people for getting us this far and now it’s full steam ahead – onwards."

The Somerton and Langport stations were closed almost 60 years ago as part of the Beeching Axe which saw hundreds of stations closed all across the country in a drive for greater efficiency.