Minister gets access to see station improvements

Baroness Kramer visits Leighton Buzzard Railway Station
Baroness Kramer visits Leighton Buzzard Railway Station

Transport Minister Baroness Kramer was in Leighton Buzzard on Friday to inspect the progress of much-needed works to improve accessibility at the town’s station.

The improvements, which include the installation of a new, covered footbridge with two new lifts, will provide a step-free route to the platforms for the first time, making it easier for passengers to use the rail network.

The work has been funded by the Government’s Access for All scheme.

Network Rail started works in July 2013 and is due to complete them by end of the year.

Baroness Kramer said: “I am pleased to see that all passengers will soon be able to use these facilities to get to work, go out and visit friends and family much more easily.

“I know these changes to accessibility mean a lot to people, and that’s why the Government, as part of its long term economic plan, has invested £460 million since 2006 in the Access for All programme to provide step-free routes at over 190 stations across the country by 2019.”

Works under the Access for All programme are over and above what the rail industry is required to do to improve access in line with EU and UK standards whenever they carry out infrastructure works at stations.

Terry Strickland, area director for Network Rail, said: “The railway should be for everyone and projects like this help us get closer to achieving that aim. The new lifts and footbridge don’t just help people with mobility difficulties but anyone with suitcases or buggies and are a significant boost to Leighton Buzzard station.”