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In Full . . .

Barnt Green ups stakes over lifts

Posted on December 31 2017 at 3:24:49

Barnt Green Parish Council called an emergency meeting last month to raise its protest over the disabled lifts U-turn at the village station.

After telling residents for years that they were committed to installing lifts on the new station footbridge, Network Rail now says the cost has more than trebled from £900,000 to at least £3 million and cannot be afforded.

This has caused dismay among villagers, with the chairman of the parish council, Robert Cholmondeley, saying they had been “hoodwinked”.

Coun Cholmondeley told the extraordinary parish meeting in December they were still awaiting a response from Network Rail to their request for a meeting.

“We should write to [Network Rail chief executive] Mark Carne saying it is six weeks since we asked Network Rail for a meeting and they have not even given us a date.

“I think it is appalling,” Coun Cholmondeley added. “We have been very patient in taking the commitment from Network Rail and confirmation that the budget was in place since the summer of 2015. 

“Those commitments need to be honoured in line with the letter and spirit of the law.

“Without lifts at Barnt Green, Network Rail cannot claim that the Bromsgrove Electrification Project has been completed.”

The meeting heard that local MP Sajid Javid was also writing to Mr Carne “to demand an explanation and ask him to have the decision reviewed”.

Councillors delegated authority to the chairman, vice-chairman and executive officer “to do whatever is necessary to progress this matter”.

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