Daniel McHugh has been running this campaign for several years gaining support from Michael Gove MP as well as over 2000 other signatories. I hope you will support his campaign by clicking the link above, and below this article.
Ash Vale train station currently has no disabled access. The only way into the station is via a long staircase up to the platform. I contacted Network Rail who gave the following response:
“Accessibility enhancements are funded by the government through the Access for All scheme, and stations can put forward bids for this funding. Successful bids are determined by factors including footfall, distance to nearest fully accessible station, and if there will be third party investment available. As the scheme has limited funding, only stations with the highest scores are given funding. This funding is distributed over five-year periods, and the next funding round for this programme will run from 2024-2029 with bids invited some time before. For your information, the nearest fully accessible stations to Ash Vale are Woking station (for services to London) and Aldershot (for services towards Ascot and Alton).“
Disabled Access for Ash Vale Station
Network Rail say they base this decision on footfall, however footfall will be lower in Ash Vale and higher elsewhere due to elderly and disabled people not being able to use the station currently.
It is frankly not good enough to say that disabled people would need to travel to either Aldershot or Woking to catch a train. For most this would require either a taxi or bus, both adding extra cost and time to a journey.