A Transport Minister confirmed in the House of Commons yesterday that the Department for Transport has provided Network Rail with £75m to complete the installation of warning tactile paving on outstanding station platforms by 2025.
In a response to a Parliamentary Question by Fleur Anderson MP Transport Minister Richard Holden MP committed to making public transport safer for passengers with vision impairment and providing £75m to Network Rail to install tactile paving on all remaining station platforms by 2025.
Guide Dogs has been campaigning to have warning tactile surfaces installed on all train station platforms for several years. We escalated our campaign in 2020, following the tragic accident when Cleveland Gervais, who was visually impaired, was fatally struck by a train after falling from a station platform. The platform did not have tactile installed. With the support of other disability charities in 2021, we made some progress when the Department for Transport allocated £10m to Network Rail to install tactile on the platforms of 100 stations.
We continued to campaign for additional funding to be allocated to complete the work by 2025. Originally the Department for Transport had set a provisional target of 2029. We made clear that this original timeframe was not soon enough. The Department for Transport has now allocated the remainder of the required funding to complete this vital work.
“Guide Dogs welcomes the news that the Department for Transport has provided Network Rail with the £75m to complete the installation of warning tactile paving on outstanding station platforms by 2025.
“Guide Dogs has been clear that the installation of warning tactile paving on platforms should be completed as a priority. Tactile paving is essential for keeping people with sight loss safe at railway stations, helping them to travel independently and with confidence when using the rail network. Our research shows half of people who are visually impaired do not use public transport as much as they would like; we know that a lack of accessibility features such as warning tactile is a factor in this.
“We have campaigned with other disability organisations to have tactile paving introduced for many years, and we are delighted that Network Rail and the wider rail industry will work together to complete this work by 2025. In the meantime, we will continue to work with the rail industry to ensure measures are in place to raise awareness of stations where warning tactile is not yet fully installed.”
Clive Wood, Lead Regional Policy and Campaigns Manager at Guide Dogs
This is a huge win and will make a big difference to everyone with a vision impairment in the UK.
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