South Western Railway has announced that Chessington South station will be able to offer passengers with reduced mobility step-free access to and from the platforms.
Integrated journeys with London buses will also be possible with the bus stops located directly opposite the station, with drop kerbing allowing better accessibility for all.
The train operator is working in partnership with the London Borough of Kingston, Chessington World of Adventures and the Department for Transport to make Chessington South station more accessible.
Each year more than 300,000 customers use Chessington South to get to Chessington School and Chessington World of Adventures.
The scheme is largely funded by the Department for Transport under their National Station Improvement Programme (NSIP) but contributions are also being made by the train operator, Royal Borough of Kingston and Chessington World of Adventures.
There will also be a new cycle shelter and racking installed for 12 bikes.
The main accessibility improvements are:
- Step-free pedestrian path from platform 1 to the station forecourt and new way finding signs.
- New compliant accessible car parking bay.
- New anti-slip treads on steps and new hand rails.
- New lighting for the path and additional CCTV cameras.
The project will be completed this spring. Disruption during the project will be kept to a minimum and customers will be able to use the station while the work is taking place.
What did the officials say?
Alan Penlington, Customer Experience Director for South Western Railway, said:
“We are working in partnership with the Department for Transport, Kingston Council, Chessington World of Adventures and Chessington College, to invest more than £300,000 to make the station accessible. As part of our wider programme to enhance the station’s facilities we are also improving the cycle facilities, making access to the bus stops easier and planting a community garden.”
Sir Edward Davey MP for Kingston and Surbiton, said:
“We are delighted to see that work is progressing to make Chessington South station accessible. Initially the deadline had been the end of March but that passed and it now looks as though they will meet their new anticipated date of completion in the middle of May.
“There will be a huge sigh of relief from those with limited mobility when these works are completed as it will save a great deal of energy being expended to get to Surbiton, to start a train journey. Wheelchair users look forward to a time when the train will be fully accessible.
“A more accessible station will benefit young and old alike. Young families will benefit from no longer having to struggle up stairs with unwieldy pushchairs; visually impaired will benefit from either the newly refurbished stairs or from the level access; wheelchair users will be able to say goodbye to the lengthening of their round trip journey by at least an hour and having to travel via Surbiton.”
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