Nick Herbert welcomes funding for Hassocks station improvement
Arundel & South Downs MP Nick Herbert has welcomed the announcement on Thursday (31 January) that Hassocks Railway Station will be made more accessible to passengers.
Under the ‘Access for All' programme, the Department for Transport is providing £35 million a year (until 2015) for improvements to the accessibility of stations across the country.
The work is expected to benefit disabled passengers, the elderly and parents with pushchairs.
The work required will vary from station to station, but may include step-free access from the station entrance to the platforms, improved access routes between platforms, improved lighting, hearing induction loops and passenger information screens.
Network Rail will carry out a feasibility study at Hassocks Station during the next 18 months to determine what improvements need to be made. The design and construction of the new facilities will follow.
Work is forecast for completion between 2012 and 2015.
The announcement coincides with the start of major work on the station and junction at Barnham, part of a £25 million upgrade for the signals, platforms and tracks.
Catherine Cassidy, Chair of the Hassocks Amenity Association Rail Group said: "We are absolutely delighted to hear this news. This will make train travel accessible for a great deal more people at Hassocks station.
"This will be a huge improvement and will implement a significant and important part of the feasibility study for re-building Hassocks Station.
"We are working closely with Network Rail and Southern and the local authorities to move forward with implementing the other parts of the feasibility study to re-build the station."
Nick Herbert said: "I welcome this announcement. Hassocks station is desperately in need of improvement and this will be a start.
"It's good news for passengers and a tribute to the patient work of the Hassocks Amenity Association Rail Group in promoting the cause."
Mr Herbert added: "I will continue to support local campaigners in their efforts to secure the modern station that Hassocks deserves."
Nick Herbert met with the Managing Director of Southern, Chris Burchell, at the Commons last week to discuss the rail service to the Arundel & South Downs constituency.
Notes for Editors
1. The news release from the Department for Transport can be found at http://nds.coi.gov.uk/content/detail.aspx?NewsAreaId=2&ReleaseID=349159&SubjectId=12
2. For details of the Department for Transport's Access for All programme, visit http://www.dft.gov.uk/transportforyou/access/rail/railstations/access/accessforallstations