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How Safe Is Epsom Station?

January 11, 2005 6:00 PM
Jonathan Lees & Colin Taylor outside Epsom Station with a Taxi Operator

The Lib Dems want Epsom station improved, with a good taxi rank

A Government scheme, launched almost six years ago, to increase safety at railway stations isn't working in many areas across Britain, the Liberal Democrats have revealed. Train companies are failing to get their stations accredited as 'safe stations' and some stations are even losing their status. Only 2 out of the 161 Southern Train Company stations meet the standard - and Epsom isn't one of them!

Some train companies are progressing slowly, but overall - at the current rate - there would be no secure stations left within two and a half years. At the same time the number of crimes committed at stations and on railway land has increased by 2% between 2002/03 and 2003/04.

The failure to tackle the fear of crime at rail stations is a major factor in discouraging people from using public transport. A survey carried out by the Government shows that 22% of people would make more public transport journeys if security measures were introduced.

Lib Dem Parliamentary Spokesperson for Epsom & Ewell, Cllr Jonathan Lees, said: "If we expect more people to use public transport then we should start sorting out the problems. Our railways are in a mess, due to Privatisation, which started during the Conservatives' time in Government!"

"Epsom station is due to be improved", he added, "but when will this happen?"

The Lib Dems would like to see Epsom station cleaned up and given a face-lift, with proper parking facilities at the front, especially for the taxis that are an integral part of the local public transport service.

Work is also urgently needed at East Ewell, Stoneleigh and West Ewell stations.