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Chalkweel Station disabled access

Anna Forth MP wants faster progress on accessibility 2-year wait for disability access at Chalkwell

ACCESSIBLE facilities at Chalkwell station will not be installed for two years, customers of the well-used trainline c2c have been informed. 

In May, c2c agreed to the installation of a lift and footbridge, as Chalkwell is the only station on thec2c line that is not “access-friendly”.

This came as the result of Southend securing £350million capital from the Access For All Fund.

Anna Firth, MP for Southend West, who has been campaigning for the works, insisted the lack of progress was ‘not acceptable.’ She said: “Securing the £350 million capital was a major win for Southend. However, the current completion date is not scheduled until 2024. 

“A two-year wait between announcement and delivery of this vital project is not acceptable. We need to get this project back on track, so Chalkwell offers a truly inclusive service for all.

“I will continue to lobby all parties until a faster approach is secured.”

A spokesman for c2c said: “We are really pleased to have secured funding for this project to provide step-free access at Chalkwell station as we know the positive impact it will have on our passengers and the local community.

“The original application to secure funding under the Department for Transport’s Access For All scheme was approved in 2019 and we welcome Anna Firth’s support for this scheme.

“Under current plans, this fund will be used to construct a lift and an accessible footbridge and works are on track to be completed in 2024.”Westcliff-based campaigner for the blind Jill Allen-King OBE, who recently won a Pride of Britain Lifetime Achievement Award said that this time delay was “scandalous”.

Anna Firth told Leigh-on-Sea News: “I’ve been campaigning for over 40 years to get the lift put in at Chalkwell station. They’ve got the money for it now, yet they’ve told me it won’t go in until 2024. It’s scandalous.”

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