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More accessible stations planned with £20m fund

ANOTHER 124 stations are set to become more accessible, after the Department for Transport confirmed funding of £20 million to pay for upgrades.

The fund is part of a £300 million commitment which was announced in principle by the DfT in 2019.

The stations on the latest list will be gaining accessible footbridges equipped with lifts, accessible toilets and better information screens.

The improvements are being made as part of the Access for All programme, which was launched in 2006. Since then, this programme has made 200 stations step-free and provided smaller scale accessibility improvements at more than 1,500 others.

The announcement came as the government launched a campaign called ‘it’s everyone’s journey’ to make public transport easier to use.

The campaign is being supported by more than 100 partners, including FirstGroup, WHSmith Travel and the Alzheimer’s Society. The intention of the campaign is to raise awareness about the needs of disabled people on public transport, particularly people whose disabilities are not obvious. It is also designed to prompt other passengers to think and consider how their behaviour might affect disabled travellers.

Transport secretary Grant Shapps said: ‘The ability to travel easily from A to B is an essential factor for our day to day lives – but is not the reality for everyone.

‘I recognise that we have much more to do, which is why we’re making 124 stations more accessible – a key part of levelling-up access for disabled people to transport and opening up opportunities for all.

‘This is just the start of a much more ambitious agenda. My goal is to go much further in the years ahead to help ensure that our country’s transport system becomes one of the most accessible in the world.’

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