In 2020, Thirsk station was awarded £1million in Government funding as part of the Department for Transport’s Mid-Tier Access for All Fund.
North Yorkshire County Council, Network Rail, TransPennine Express are making progress on plans for an improvement in accessibility at the station.
Since being given the fund, Network Rail has worked with both North Yorkshire County Council and Transpennine Express to develop different proposals for the scheme.
The plans for the Access for All project would include lifts installed, along with a new footbridge and creating step-free access across all aspects of the station.
North Yorkshire County Council is preparing to submit a bid for the Government’s Levelling Up Fund, which is all they are waiting on to start the construction on-site.
Network Rail is providing stakeholders with more information on the plans, with the feedback going towards developing the final stages.
Kieran Dunkin, Principal Programme Sponsor for Network Rail, said: “We know how important this scheme to improve accessibility at Thirsk is for passengers. We’ve been working collaboratively with North Yorkshire County Council and TransPennine Express on the design of these improvements, which will include installing lifts at the station.
“We’re now supporting the County Council on their work to prepare a funding bid to deliver the project in full. To inform the submission, we’ll be getting feedback from local stakeholders to identify the option which will work best for passengers.”
North Yorkshire County Councillor Don Mackenzie, Executive Member for Access, said: “The County Council welcomes this Access for All funding for Thirsk station and looks forward to working with Network Rail to ensure its delivery. The step-free access to the platforms will be a very significant improvement for all passengers and will provide further encouragement for our residents to use public transport.
“We anticipate that there will be a further opportunity to bid for government funding as part of its levelling up agenda and if or when that funding window opens, we will be ready with a bid. Officers are working closely with district and borough council colleagues on a wider transport bid covering a number of stations, including Malton/Norton and Seamer rail stations.”
Adam Fairclough, Head of Customer Experience Improvement for TransPennine Express, said: “We’re very pleased to be working alongside Network Rail and North Yorkshire County Council in developing proposals for step free access at Thirsk station. Accessibility for all our customers is key to us as a train operator and we’re delighted to support the County Council in their preparation of a funding bid to make these plans a reality.”
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