Access campaigner backs Goodmayes station lifts plan
PUBLISHED: 11:37 20 January 2015 | UPDATED: 12:03 20 January 2015
A campaign group has called Crossrail proposals to ensure step-free access at a station a “step in the right direction”.
The plans submitted to Redbridge Council include the introduction of three new lifts, new platform lighting and platform extensions to accommodate the new trains at Goodmayes station.
Transport for All campaigns coordinator Lianna Etkind has welcomed the move, which she believes will become a “beacon” for train station accessibility across the country, for older people and those with disabilities.
The improvements will be carried out by Network Rail if the proposals are approved.
Lianna said: “The lighting is really good to hear about as well because access isn’t just about steps, there’s lots of other barriers for disabled and older people and this will allow people to travel confidently.”
She added: “Crossrail is funded by public money, so it’s disabled people’s money too and to exclude them would be such a slap in the face – the fact they [Crossrail] have said it’s open to anybody shows that it’s a beacon to other parts of the country for good practice and access.”
Goodmayes station user Daniel Elred, 90, from Goodmayes, will appreciate the lifts if they are installed, according to his carer Ruth Mauto.
She said: “It’s not easy for him to use the stairs when we take the train to central London so lifts would really help.”
Redbridge planning cabinet member Cllr Helen Coomb said: “The planned improvements to Goodmayes station are welcomed and if approved should, together with the eventual introduction of Crossrail services and new state of the art trains, transform the experience of local commuters.
She added: “The improvements will make travel safer and more attractive for our residents, businesses and visitors to Redbridge, including disabled passengers and others with reduced mobility.”
Journeys from Goodmayes to Bond Street will take 29 minutes when Crossrail is scheduled to open in 2019.
Crossrail surface director Matthew White said: “Crossrail will provide a step change in public transport for people in Redbridge – better stations, new trains and quicker journeys.”