Barnt Green residents 'fed up' as station lift scheme postponed until winter - The Bromsgrove Standard

Barnt Green residents 'fed up' as station lift scheme postponed until winter

Bromsgrove Editorial 27th Apr, 2024   0

‘FED up’ Barnt Green residents said they were hoping for an end to the ‘ridiculous’ decade-long bid to have lifts installed at the village’s station after Network Rail (NR) announced work would now start this winter.

NR chiefs speaking at the packed Barnt Green Parish Meeting on Monday said they understood people’s frustrations after numerous delays to the scheme and confirmed their commitment to seeing the project through.

Barnt Green is currently one of the most inaccessible stations in the country for people with disabilities.

Simon Clifford, representing Network Rail at the meeting, said the current situation was ‘not ideal’ for those with disabilities and added work on the lifts would start between November 2024 and February 2025, with the aim to be on-site before Christmas.

This work will take between nine months and a year, meaning the lifts may not be fully operational until February 2026.

Parish council chairman Robert Cholmondeley said the authority had been following the project since 2015 when he claimed they were told Network Rail lifts would be installed by the ‘end of the year’.

The Standard was told by Network Rail last February it expected work on three new lifts would be completed by this summer.

Residents were told last night complications with the design had delayed the scheme but were assured this process would finish in July and the project would go to tender in the weeks afterwards.

Bromsgrove District Councillor Charlie Hotham said he had been pushing for lifts to be installed since 2012 and that people were ‘fed up’ with the entire situation after being given ‘promise after promise’ over 12 years.

He added: “There has been no end of ridiculousness that has come back to the parish council about these lifts, and hopefully this is the end of that and you are going to see this project through until the end.”

Mr Clifford said: “Everything is committed to the scheme, including funding, which was ringfenced by the Department for Transport last year- we’ve never had this before and that money isn’t going anywhere.

“We’ve had some stumbling blocks along the way but we are moving forward at pace and the designs are progressing really well.”

He also assured residents the railway station would not be closed during the installation as works would be completed overnight.

And Mr Clifford committed to holding another meeting in July to show the designs to people, provide updates and answer any further questions or concerns.


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