Michael Fabricant questioned Paul Maynard, the new Rail Minister, in the House of Commons today (Thursday 15th September) regarding progress with the construction of disabled access to two of the 3 platforms at Lichfield Trent Valley Railway station.
Michael asked: “Two out of three platforms at Lichfield Trent Valley railway station, which is on the west coast main line, are completely inaccessible to disabled people. First there was a plan to make them accessible; then we were told it was delayed. People in Lichfield—and, in particular, the Member of Parliament for Lichfield—are getting rather irritated about this potential delay. When will work start?”
The Minister replied: “Like me, my hon. Friend is a passionate advocate of improved accessibility on our rail network. As he will know, some of the Access for All funding was re-prioritised under the Hendy recommendations. I am hoping to announce very shortly which stations will be prioritised again. I stop in Lichfield Trent Valley often myself—largely in the dark, I must confess—and I am sure there is a great need for improved accessibility there. I look forward to meeting my hon. Friend to further discuss that.”
Michael now says: “I will indeed be meeting Paul again to discuss this. Previous transport ministers had given me assurances that Lichfield is a high priority, but with a change of leadership, I want the new transport team to know that my campaign for access to all three platforms remains a priority. Construction work was originally scheduled to begin before the end of the year. I hope it will not be delayed.”