After a three-year wait, opening of new toilets at Harborough railway station will be delayed again – this time over the size of the cubicles

“This almost beggars belief. More delays and yet more broken promises to our community.”

By Red Williams
Wednesday, 29th June 2022, 12:40 pm
The latest blow to the much-delayed multi-million pound scheme has been slammed by Harborough district councillor Phil Knowles.
The latest blow to the much-delayed multi-million pound scheme has been slammed by Harborough district councillor Phil Knowles.

New toilets set to be opened at Market Harborough railway station tomorrow (Thursday) after three years have suffered a last-ditch hold-up – over the size of the cubicles.

The new lavatories were due to be finally thrown open to passengers and visitors after they’ve been forced to use temporary loos at the crucial local transport hub since the summer of 2019.

But the new toilets and waiting room on the northbound platform will now be delayed for several weeks after final tests last Friday highlighted the latest problem.

People don’t have enough room to walk past when the cubicle doors are open, the Network Rail site visit showed.

The latest blow to the much-delayed multi-million pound scheme has been slammed by Harborough district councillor Phil Knowles.

“This almost beggars belief.

“More delays and yet more broken promises to our community.

“In just days we have gone from a state of ‘finally the work is to be completed’ to ‘sorry there are yet more problems and more delays’,” said Cllr Knowles, who leads the Liberal Democrats on Harborough council.

“I have already asked for an urgent site meeting at the station.

“I want to see what has gone wrong this time, I want to see it for myself.

Passengers have had enough of being forced to use temporary toilets.

“It’s now at the stage that only when it’s all open will the community finally believe it.”

The Great Bowden ward councillor hit the warpath after being alerted to the new hiccough by a Network Rail member of staff.

Cllr Phil King, the leader of Harborough council, said: “It’s disappointing and frustrating.

“But this sort of structural improvement to a railway station is not easy.

“They’ve had a lot of issues to contend with and they’ve got to get everything right before opening these new toilets.”

Gary Walsh, East Midlands Route Director for Network Rail, said: “We’re incredibly sorry that there are further delays to the new toilet block and waiting room at Market Harborough station.

“Providing better facilities for passengers is really important to us, but more work is needed before we can open them safely,” said Mr Walsh.

“We realise how frustrating this will be for people in the town and would like to thank passengers for their continued patience.

“We are working hard to deliver these facilities as soon as we can, so that passengers can start to enjoy a better station experience.”