Show support for an accessible Biggleswade station, says MP
PUBLISHED: 11:30 12 October 2018 | UPDATED: 11:30 12 October 2018
Biggleswade railway station is one step closer to becoming assessible to those with disabilities thanks to a collaborative effort by North East Bedfordshire’s MP, and organisations in the town and beyond – but help is still needed.
MP Alistair Burt led a series of meetings in the last year to push for Biggleswade to be nominated for the Access for All scheme.
The scheme helps to create step-free access solutions, as well as as wider improvements to parking and public transport provision to and from the station – and now an application is being made.
Mr Burt said: “This is an historic campaign that has tried to get improvements a number of times over the years. I am delighted that, with the assistance of local councillors, Central Bedfordshire Council, Biggleswade Town Council, Network Rail, Govia Thameslink and local disability campaigners, that we are now a step closer to seeing these efforts pay off.
“We have held a number of meetings over the past 12 months which have helped to develop proposals and the council have funded a feasibility study which shows the commitment to improving Biggleswade station and ensuring we have a strong case to put forward.”
There has been pressure on Network Rail and the government to take action to improve access and facilities at the station for years – and in December 2017 East of England MEP Alex Mayer delivered a speech in Brussels, backing a campaign for the station to be made step-free.
The Access for All programme is a government-funded initiative to support stations to create an obstacle free, accessible route from the station entrance to the platform. With £300 million in funding available, it is a competitive scheme and bids must show they have well evidenced support from the local community.
Mr Burt is asking constituents to contact him by Wednesday, October 17, to show their support for the improvements so that these can be included as part of the application.
You can do this by emailing email@example.com, or by dropping a letter into his Biggleswade office at the North East Bedfordshire Conservative Association in St Andrew’s Street.
He added: “As the process develops, there will be a chance for full public consultation of the ideas being considered, but support for the initial concept of redevelopment will be very useful at this stage.”