Disabled Worcester graduate 'who got stranded at inaccessible' station welcomes work - The Worcester Observer

Disabled Worcester graduate 'who got stranded at inaccessible' station welcomes work

Worcester Editorial 9th Jan, 2024   0

A UNIVERSITY of Worcester graduate who claimed he got stranded at Barnt Green station five years ago due to inaccessibility has welcomed plans to install three new lifts there after rail bosses released new details about the project.

Three new lifts are set to be installed at the railway station, which is on the Birmingham New Street to Worcester Foregate Street line during peak morning times.

This will provide passengers with step-free access to all platforms for the first time in its history.

The firm told The Observer back in February it expected the work to be complete by summer 2024.

A Network Rail spokesperson told The Observer it was now looking to finalise a date to start building the new lifts, with passengers and residents set to be informed what to expect once a construction programme is confirmed.

The spokesperson added additional surveys were carried out before Christmas to ensure the planned upgrades meet updated fire regulations.

The lift designs are now being updated with letters to be sent to residents when the work programme is ready to be revealed in more detail.

Additional help points will also be installed on two of the platforms.

Much of the work is set to be completed outside operating hours and notice will be given to any disruption caused during the installation.

The 1995 Disability Discrimination Act made it a legal obligation to make all forms of public transport accessible to all.

In 2019, wheelchair user and University of Worcester graduate Dylan Cummings told the Observer he felt embarrassed having to sit down to shuffle up and down stairs to cross the footbridge at the station to get to his intended platform, missing two trains in the ordeal.

He said he thought more could have been done in the intervening five years to make the station more accessible but added he was pleased the work was being carried out.

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