PROPOSALS to build a �75m train tunnel through the centre of Windsor have received the backing of more than 100 businesses.

The Windsor Link project, devised by Royal Borough councillor and entrepreneur George Bathurst, plans to link the town's two stations with a tunnel passing under Thames Avenue, which would reduce journey times to Paddington and Waterloo by 10 minutes.

Mr Bathurst has spent two months canvassing businesses in Windsor and Eton, and the town's Chamber of Commerce has written to the Secretary of State for Transport, Philip Hammond, supporting the proposals.

The letter, signed by chairwoman of the chamber, Amanda Gee, says because of the town's parks, architecture and river, it is difficult to provide sufficient parking and transport.

The letter reads: "We welcome your support for a new western rail link to Heathrow, However, as you consider options, please could you include a route through our town, as suggested by the Windsor Link Railway?" Mr Bathurst welcomed the support and said: "Why wouldn't any one support making Windsor a better place? The companies who have backed the project are a range of big and small businesses." Network Rail received plans from Mr Bathurst in March and have referred them to the Secretary of State.

Mr Bathurst estimates the tunnel and rail works would cost �75m and has allowed a further �25m for other items.

A revenue study revealed if trains run every 15 minutes, fare revenue would amount to �20m annually.