I am pleased to have recently added my written support to the nomination of Reigate, Earlswood and Merstham railway stations by our local train operating company, Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) for funding from April 2024 to make these stations step-free and accessible for all passengers, under the Department for Transport’s ‘Access for All’ funding programme.
The ‘Access for All’ programme was launched in 2006 to address the issues faced by disabled passengers and passengers facing mobility restraints (such as heavy luggage or pushchairs) when using railway stations in Great Britain.
The funding is used to create an obstacle free, accessible route from the station entrance to the platform. This generally includes providing lifts or ramps, as well as associated works and refurbishment along the route.
Whilst this is the fourth time since 2014 that we have had the opportunity to apply for such funding for local stations, this is the first time that GTR has supported the nomination, which is an important pre-requisite.
I am joined in my support for GTR’s nominations by Reigate and Redhill District Rail Users Association (RRDRUA), Reigate and Banstead Borough Council and the Surrey Coalition of Disabled People.
Should GTR be successful with these applications, this would enable much improved access by bridges and lifts to allow cross-platform accessibility at Reigate, Earlswood and Merstham stations, all of which do not currently comply with disability access guidelines.
Not only will this transform rail travel to and from these stations for travellers with mobility issues it will also benefit parents with small children and pushchairs, and passengers carrying heavy luggage.
I hope that this application is successful, after all this time!