A tireless campaign to bring disabled access to Abergavenny railway station is progressing well.
Designs for a new footbridge with lifts to enable those with mobility problems to easily access all platforms should be finished by the end of the financial year, with the structure completed by March 2024.
Monmouth MP David Davies and Monmouth MS Peter Fox joined local councillors and others for a site visit on Friday (9 July) to talk through latest updates on the new design with Network Rail.
Improvement works are being funded by the Department for Transport’s Access for All programme and will provide an obstacle free, accessible route to and between platforms.
Local County Councillor Maureen Powell has been at the forefront of the project for many years.
She said the problem in the past had been the siting of the proposed access, as it is “imperative” the signals should in no way be impeded, but these concerns have now been overcome.
“The original footbridge designs are out of date and have been superseded by the new Beacon-style footbridges, so the outline design needed to be refreshed,” said Cty Cllr Powell.
“The new accessible footbridge with lifts will be sited at the Hereford end of the station, and the original refurbished footbridge will remain.
“The listed building consent will need to be renewed, but we can look forward to the Access for All bridge being installed in 2024.
“This is very welcome news, not only for the disabled, but also parents with young children and anyone with heavy luggage.”
Mr Davies said: “I want to pay particular tribute to Maureen Powell who launched the campaign for better access at the station some years ago.
“Since then she has chased us all at various meetings and got Network Rail and Transport for Wales down to the station to see the problems for themselves.
“I have been in touch with the Department for Transport to emphasise the importance of this scheme to Abergavenny and I am pleased that at last it looks as though work is going ahead.”
Mr Fox added: “I too would like to pay a sincere thank you to Councillor Maureen Powell, whose sheer energy and tenacity in this campaign will undoubtedly make a huge impact on people’s livelihoods.
“The works will be a huge relief and a long time coming for those with a disability.
“It is now crucial that the works are given the green lift swiftly, without any delay.”