For the first time, passengers at the busy Barry Station will have a fully accessible, step-free option between platforms 2 and 3.
Heavy lifting begins Saturday 5 February, as Network Rail begins the carefully planned installation of a brand-new footbridge and two lifts at one of south Wales’ busiest stations.
The £3.3m improvements are being funded by the Department for Transport and Welsh Government through the ‘Access for All’ programme, which aims to make train journeys more accessible and enjoyable for everyone.
Bill Kelly, Network Rail route director said: “I am delighted that passengers in Barry will soon, for the first time ever, benefit from step-free access at the station. This is going to make a huge difference to people’s journeys, meaning those with mobility issues, with pushchairs or carrying heavy items can benefit from a much more accessible railway.
“We are committed to making more of the railway in Wales more accessible by investing in changes that mean every passenger can use the railway safely, confidently and independently.”
The work leads on from the recently completed ‘Access for All’ scheme at Cadoxton Station, and takes the stretch of railway between Barry Island and Cardiff Central one step closer to being a fully accessible line.
Dr Robert Gravelle, TfW’s Accessibility and Inclusion Manager, said: “At Transport for Wales, we’re fully committed to building an accessible rail network for Wales and the Borders and improving accessibility at stations is a key part of this.
“We’re proud to be working collaboratively with Network Rail on improving the accessibility at Barry, and we’re also grateful for the guidance and support from our Accessibility and Inclusion Panel, who have contributed their feedback during the design process. We’re looking forward to working together to develop more schemes throughout the network in the years ahead as part of the Access for All scheme.”
Network Rail has carried out some improvements already, including installing tactile paving on platforms and widening platform 2.
A 220-tonne crane will be used to lift the bridge and shafts into place overnight on Saturday 5 February. The station carpark will be closed from 06.00 on Monday 31 January until 22.00 on Sunday 6 February for the work to be safely carried out.
Network Rail and contractors Centregreat Rail will then get busy installing new lighting, new telecoms systems, new CCTV and providing upgrades to station facilities, before the bridge and lifts’ planned opening to passengers in Summer 2022.
Barry station will remain open to passengers throughout the work with a temporary footbridge in place and rail services will not be affected.
Take a look behind the scenes at the paint shop in Cardiff
Alun Cairns MP, Vale of Glamorgan said: “It is hugely promising to see such progress being made to Barry Station on the Access for All Scheme. I went to visit the station before Christmas to see the early beginnings of the work and I think the upgrades will make a real difference to rail users. This is just another great example of Barry’s local transport infrastructure improving, following the Cadoxton Station upgrades in 2020.”
Jane Hutt MS, Vale of Glamorgan said: “It is great to hear that progress is being made and that the station will be complete and accessible by the Summer.
“This will make a huge difference and make the train station accessible for everyone. It is also important that everyone has the opportunity to choose public transport. I look forward to visiting to see the completed work.”
Rail Minister, Wendy Morton said: “The upgrades at Barry Station will open up train travel for even more passengers as part of our Access for All programme, which has committed £350 million of Government funding to provide step-free routes at more than 200 stations across the UK.”
Photo and video credit: Network Rail