A study has begun that could see a new route between Brownhills and Lichfield opened up for walkers and cyclists.
Lichfield District Council hopes to see the mothballed former South Staffordshire Railway line transformed into a greenway.
Network Rail and Sustrans will work with the local authority to assess the possibility of opening up the route for the public once more.
Cllr Doug Pullen, leader of the council, said:
“Having seen, back in 2018, the excellent work carried out by the community group Back the Track, who are working to open up part of the disused South Staffordshire Railway between Walsall and the A5 as a leisure greenway, I’m tremendously excited that we are now in a position to explore the development of a greenway from Brownhills to Lichfield.
“This project presents real opportunities for our health, mental wellbeing, local connectivity and our visitor economy.
“I’d like to thank Network Rail and Sustrans for their willingness to bring it to life.”Cllr Doug Pullen, Lichfield District council
South Staffordshire Railway initially opened in 1849 and was used for passenger travel and to transport coal and oil.
The branch line has since been closed to passenger and freight services, but much of the track still remains.
A feasibility study will be carried out this summer to understand the scale of the project, likely issues, opportunities, costs and how best to develop it.
Cllr Richard Cox, cabinet member responsible for leisure, added:
“We’re excited to get this project started, as creating a high quality off-road cycle and footpath will be a great asset for the district.
“It will connect the National Cycle Network and encourage more of our residents to exercise and commute to work safely.”