Southern Railway, Mid Sussex District Council (MSDC) and Network Rail have welcomed a £1 million award from the Department for Transport for step-fee access improvements at Wivelsfield station. The investment comes from the national Access for All programme, funded by the department and administered by Network Rail.
The Government funding earmarked for the lift is subject to design and project approval. Southern will now work with the council and Network Rail to develop options for the scheme.
MSDC, working in partnership with West Sussex County Council, is planning to allocate upwards of £3.5 million of Local Growth funding to support sustainable travel and public realm improvements at Burgess Hill and Wivelsfield stations. This forms part of a town-wide package of sustainable travel improvements to the value of £21.8 million.
Angie Doll, Southern’s Managing Director, said: “This is great news for disabled passengers, parents with buggies, older people and people with heavy luggage travelling towards London from Wivelsfield station.
“Southbound passengers already have step-free access, so this investment will make the station completely step-free between street and platforms. It will also tie in with the council’s plans to create a better transport interchange here. We are committed to working with Network Rail and local authorities to make travel on our network as easy as possible for everybody.”
Councillor Judy Llewellyn-Burke, Deputy Leader of Mid Sussex District Council added: “We are delighted with this award from the Department for Transport. The improvements to access at Wivelsfield station will complement our Place and Connectivity Programme as we increase and improve connectivity between transport hubs and Burgess Hill town centre.”
Network Rail’s route director for Sussex, Shaun King, said: “Accessible stations make it easier for people to visit friends, get to the shops or to work. The upgrade to Wivelsfield station will provide an easier and more accessible station that can be utilised by all members of the public and we are delighted to facilitate this.”
Govia Thameslink Railway
Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) operates Thameslink, Great Northern, Southern and Gatwick Express services as follows:
- Thameslink – cross-London services between Bedford/Peterborough/Cambridge and Brighton/Horsham/Littlehampton/East Grinstead, and between Luton/St Albans and Sutton/Wimbledon/Rainham; plus services between London and Sevenoaks
- Great Northern – services between London and Welwyn, Hertford, Peterborough, Cambridge and King’s Lynn
- Southern – services between London and the Sussex coast (Brighton, Worthing, Eastbourne, Bognor Regis, Hastings) and parts of Surrey, Kent and Hampshire (Ashford International, Southampton, Portsmouth)
- Gatwick Express – fast, non-stop direct services between Gatwick Airport and London Victoria