Lift locations agreed for Nailsea and Backwell Railway Station
PUBLISHED: 10:00 15 February 2018
A long-awaited scheme to install lifts to improve access at Nailsea and Backwell Railway Station has taken a step closer to becoming a reality.
Great Western Railway (GWR) has carried out a feasibility study to install lifts on both platforms at the station.
Engineers from Tony Gee and Partners, which has been commissioned by GWR to carry out the study, met with interested parties to discuss the different options and two proposals have now been agreed.
Alison Morgan, who has been campaigning for improved access at the station for more than 10 years, said: “It was a very positive meeting but there is still a long way to go.
“We now have to wait for these options to be confirmed, final plans drawn up, the tender process and contractors to be appointed, the final costings to be agreed, any extra funding needed sourced and Network Rail’s agreement.
”I am cautiously optimistic that things are moving forward at last, but after 10 years of campaigning and having had my hopes dashed in the past I won’t be celebrating just yet.
“We reached this stage before in 2011 and unforeseen circumstances led to the work being shelved.
“There are still a number of factors which could halt the project again, as yet we don’t know how much the lifts will cost and if GWR will have set aside sufficient funds to cover the project.
“Network Rail also has to give its permission for any work to go ahead.”
MORE: Anger over more delays to Nailsea and Backwell Railway Station improvements.
A £1.23million Government grant was allocated to install a ramp in 2011.
But the start date for work was delayed due to urgent maintenance work and the funding deadline was eventually missed.
GWR then cancelled plans to install ramps at the station in 2016 due to fears it could destabilise the embankment.
The train operator then stressed that lifts, rather than ramps, could solve access problems to the station.
Engineers came up with three possible locations for the lifts on each platform.
A GWR spokesman said: “We recently met with customers so they could share their views on a number of potential sites for lifts at the station.
“Two preferred options, one for each platform, have been chosen, and we will now work with our specialist contractors on more detailed feasibility work necessary to take these options forward.”