BRADFORD West MP Naz Shah has written to Secretary of State for Transport Chris Grayling asking him not to abandon the Queensbury Tunnel.

She has called on the government to suspend plans to fill in the tunnel until Bradford Council has had time to complete a feasibility study into proposals to create a cycling and walking route.

The northern approach and entrance to the Queensbury tunnel lie within Ms Shah’s constituency.

She said: “The proposals produced by the Queensbury Tunnel Society are impressive and have been fully costed by an independent expert.

“I hope that the Secretary of State will pause, allow for common sense to prevail and provide adequate time for the feasibility study to be completed and fully appraised.”

“The costs of repairing the tunnel and establishing a fully lit and properly surfaced cycle route appear to be very close to the costs cited for filling it with concrete and permanently closing it.

“I have written to Chris Grayling requesting that the current plan to permanently close the tunnel is suspended until Bradford Council have completed a feasibility study into its potential use as cycle route.

“The potential of the tunnel to create a safe and sustainable cycle route between Bradford and Halifax is clear. The need to move away from car dependency and fossil fuels, to make our cities more amenable to walking and cycling is well established. The environmental and health benefits are obvious.

“But in addition to this, it also represents an important opportunity to restore an architectural icon and to celebrate the industrial heritage of our city, our landscape and the people who created it.

“Too many times we have looked back with regret at the vandalism wrought on our city by planners and developers who claimed to know best.

“The Queensbury Tunnel Society has produced a well-considered and costed proposal that is coherent with the future environmental and health needs of our population.”