Dawlish: VIDEO Devon's Main Rail Line Open

Prime Minister David Cameron has declared the south west of England "open for business'' as he visited a town whose storm-wrecked rail line reopened on Friday.

The cost of replacement bus services is not known but Network Rail workers have rebuilt the track at a cost of £35 million.

Known in Dawlish as the 'orange army' more than 300 Network Rail engineers have worked over 56 days and 56 nights to get the rail line open two weeks ahead of schedule. 

 

Devon is one of the UK's top holiday destinations - welcoming over 36 million visitors a year and supporting over 74,000 jobs - and many tourism businesses have suffered as a result of the closure. 

Bookings leading up to Easter are estimated as being 23% down and current reckoning is the crisis has cost the county around £31 million.

Natasia Moore WRAP

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