Wish list of improvements for Harborough railway station are handed over rail chiefs

Calls have been made for a catalogue of crucial improvements to be carried out at Market Harborough railway station.

Wednesday, 6th November 2019, 12:16 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th November 2019, 12:59 pm
Neil O'Brien with Lawrence Bowman, commercial director of operator East Midlands Railway.

Neil O’Brien, who was the town's MP until the start of the new general election campaign, said he wants trains to be upgraded too, ranging from better WiFi to later services back to Harborough from Leicester.

He spoke after meeting Lawrence Bowman, commercial director of operator East Midlands Railway.

Mr O’Brien said: “It’s a vital mainline station well used by people from all over Harborough district so I’m keen to see further improvements made as soon as possible.

“We discussed a few different areas.

“They included the new cycle hub and more canopies to provide cover for passengers.

“I also asked when the extension to the car park would open - an important issue.

“This is especially vital for nearby residents who struggle to access their own driveways because of parked commuter cars.”

He added: “I would also like to see better WiFi on trains, better seats and later services into Harborough from Leicester.

“It was a positive meeting and all of these points were well received.

“So I look forward to further improvements in due course.”

Steve Jones, chairman of Harborough Rail Users Group, said he was pleased Mr O’Brien is fighting their corner.

Mr Jones said: “We want to see Harborough station made fully accessible to everyone.

“East Midlands Railway has got to make it easier, faster and better to use for all commuters.

“That means installing a lift from the booking office up to the platforms.”

He added: “There’s a ramp there now but it’s very steep.

“It’s difficult for disabled people as well as the elderly and travellers with luggage or young mums to get up to trains.”

An East Midlands Railway spokesperson said:

"Over the next eight years we will be investing over £600 million to improve rail services across the East Midlands.

"This includes further improvements to Market Harborough station itself as well as quicker journeys and brand new bi-mode (both electric and diesel) trains.

"We were pleased to meet with Neil and talk about our plans in more detail and we look forward to rolling out these improvements shortly."