A £3.5m funding boost for major access improvements to Leyland train station has been welcomed.
The cash will enable the installation of a new footbridge and three lifts, providing access to all platforms for wheelchair users, people with prams and those with limited mobility.
The funds have come from the Government’s Access For All Scheme and the announcement comes just weeks after the completion of a new ticket office at the station, new shelters and a CCTV system,
County Coun John Fillis, cabinet member for highways and transport at County Hall, said: “High-quality, accessible public transport is key to Central Lancashire’s future prosperity which is why we have been lobbying for this funding for some time.
“This is the latest in a programme of continuing improvements to Leyland Station and, as part of the Central Lancashire Highways and Transport Masterplan, we are also working to ensure that the station becomes a key interchange with the rest of the public transport network.”
Coun Margaret Smith, leader of South Ribble Council, said: “This is absolutely wonderful news, and the most significant step on a journey we began in 2008 to make Leyland station fit for the 21st century.
“We’ve created productive working relationships with all interested parties in that time, bringing about a number of improvements to the station. The provision of lifts has been the crucial improvement that we’ve been lobbying for all along, and this announcement will also be welcomed by our businesses, South Ribble Partnership and Runshaw College, all of whom have thrown their support behind this.”
Coun Smith added: “They recognise the boost this could bring to the local economy, at a time when work is also moving forward on the nearby Cuerden site, which will bring many jobs to South Ribble.”
Ian Joslin, area director for Network Rail, added: “More people are travelling on our railways than ever before, so it’s important that we make taking the train as easy as possible for everyone. Better accessibility will mean a better experience for people.”