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Train bosses pledge station improvements

PUBLISHED: 09:31 05 March 2010 | UPDATED: 16:57 30 June 2010

THE campaign to clean up Great Yarmouth Railway Station continues to gather steam this week with train bosses pledged to get on-board.

Local businessman Spencer McCormack has made a commitment to improve the rundown appearance of the 1960s era terminus.

THE campaign to clean up Great Yarmouth Railway Station continues to gather steam this week with train bosses pledged to get on-board.

Local businessman Spencer McCormack has made a commitment to improve the rundown appearance of the 1960s era terminus.

Bwell Health Clubs owner Mr McCormack has received numerous pledges of support since issuing a rallying call in the Mercury this month.

SPP Digital, Asda, Haven Holidays and Anglia Skills Academy have all expressed an interest in doing something to help out.

Now train operator National Express East Anglia has a number of improvements lined up to for the station, described as having grotty loos, broken windows and minimal facilities.

The company's area manager James Steward said: “Work is going ahead on a number of projects - signs, plants and flowers and a new queuing system with steel posts and tapes are all going to be introduced.

“A night-time passenger information scheme will also be provided and the bird droppings on the concourse cleaned up.

“I am disappointed to see the critical comments about the toilets as they were refurbished quite recently and lighting has been replaced. There is a limit to what can be done to change the appearance of the station which is typical of many train terminals from the 1960s.”

The Fix Great Yarmouth Station Campaign, spearheaded by prospective Conservative candidate for Yarmouth Brandon Lewis has attracted some 3,000 supporters since launching in January.

Pledges of support for the campaign have been made on social networking site Facebook, an online petition and in writing.

The rail franchise is up for renewal next year and Mr Lewis wants train companies to be obliged to make improvements to the station as part of the bidding process.

The station came under fire again this week with Ormesby borough councillor Jim Shrimplin describing it as “abysmal and depressing.”

Speaking at the Wherry Lines Community Rail Partnership annual meeting, Mr Shrimplin said: “The station is such a miserable place to get on the train. If it was brightened up a lot more people would use the service. Something must be done to improve the station making it more acceptable for passengers.”

Several stations on the Wherry Line, between Yarmouth and Norwich, have been adopted by the community in a bid to brighten them up.

Reedham station adopter Mike Warner said: “The station is the first place passengers see when they arrive somewhere so it is important to create a good impression.”

Visit www.fixourstation.com and join the Facebook group for searching for Fix Great Yarmouth Station.

To comment on the franchise renewal visit www.dft.gov.uk/consultations/open/2010-07.


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