The Heath Railway (German: Heidebahn) is a regional railway line in North Germany that crosses the Lüneburg Heath from which it derives its name. Most of the line is unelectrified and single-tracked. It links Buchholz in der Nordheide with Hanover, the capital city of Lower Saxony. Together with the east-west Uelzen–Langwedel railway, this north-south line is one of the two most important railways on the heath.
The northern end between Buchholz in der Nordheide and Handeloh a Regionalbahn route, R 41, which is part of the Hamburg Transport Association (HVV) network. On the line between Handeloh and Soltau the HVV fare tariff is restricted to season tickets. The line is rated for a top speed of 80 km/h.
Because the Hamburg–Uelzen–Hanover and Hamburg–Rotenburg (Wümme)–Verden (Aller)–Hanover routes are much faster, the Heath Railway is of little importance for through services; the journey from Hamburg to Hanover via Soltau takes at least 2 hours, 51 minutes according to the winter timetable 2009/2010. No through connexions are offered; for example passengers have to change in Buchholz (Nordheide), Soltau and/or Bennemühlen. A through train on the Heath Railway from Soltau to Harburg should, however, be available when the timetable changes in December 2010.
There are regular goods trains only on the southern part of the line to Walsrode.
- http://www.abendblatt.de/daten/2008/10/24/958400.html, Hamburger Abendblatt dated 24 October 2008
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Heidebahn.|
- The Heidebahn
- Heidebahn: Schwarmstedt fares with information on the fares of theGVH and HVV transport networks
- The Heath Railway in the Third Reich
- VCD concept for its expansion as a freight line
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