Stechford Station Access Campaign



LOOKING FOR IMPROVEMENTS: Mrs Eunice McGhie-Belgrave with MP John Hemming (left)
and Stechford Lib-Dem Councillor Neil Eustace
Campaigner takes on rail network

Eunice McGhie-Belgrave calls for improvement in access to Stechford Station


Written by Poppy Brady

29/07/2012 11:00 AM

VETERAN CAMPAIGNER Eunice McGhie-Belgrave is taking on the might of
Birmingham’s rail network in her latest campaign to improve access to
Stechford Station.
The indomitable grandmother wants proper levelled access to Stechford
Station, which she said is currently impossible to traverse for anyone
using a wheelchair or a pushchair.
Mrs McGhie-Belgrave, who set up the Shades of Black community project
in Handsworth following riots in the 1980s, sought to describe the
situation: “Stechford Station is only seven minutes from Birmingham city
centre but so many people can’t use it because there are 72 steps to
climb before you reach the platform. The bus, on the other hand takes
around 45 minutes.
Youngsters from Stechford Primary School and Corpus Christ Catholic
Primary have collected scores of names in a petition which has now been
presented to Birmingham Yardley, Lib Dem MP John Hemming.
In explaining the support of school children, she said, “Local
youngsters have got involved in the campaign to improve the station
because they see so many people who simply can’t use it. They feel
something needs to be done.”
Birmingham Yardley Lib-Dem MP John Hemming, who received the
petition, said in response that “this is an excellent station and almost
300,000 people a year use it but a lot more would use it if it had
better level access. I intend to take this issue to Transport Minister
Norman Baker.”
Hemming pointed out that “the previous Government invested money
improving the rail network in the south east. It’s time this region had
investment.”
Chris Mepham, of London Midland Rail Network, expressed sympathy at
the concerns but said there was a lack of funds to undertake the
necessary improvement works. “We are sympathetic to everyone’s concerns
about access but there is a limited pot of money,” he said, adding that
“to improve access by extending the footbridge and installing a lift
would probably cost around a million pounds.”
He, however, said the rail company was “committed to looking at ways of improving the station for all our passengers”.







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