Plea for pram and disability access at Hillside train station

A mum of two from Southport has reached breaking point with travel bosses over a lack of pram and disability access at Hillside station.

Sophie Ellison has launched a petition to get Merseytravel to finally build a lift at the Birkdale based station after she was yet again forced to dismantle her baby’s pram while taking her children to school.

Nearly 200 people have signed her petition.

The only way Sophie, 25, can safely get her children to and from the station platform is to dismantle her baby’s pram, leave most of it behind and then make a return trip to pick it up once she had dropped her children off at the other end of the stairway.

She told the our reporter that after making the journey numerous times a day, she has finally had enough.

Sophie said: “It’s not just parents like me who struggle!

“Hillside station is a complete disgrace!

“Only this morning I was standing waiting for the train and could only watch on as an elderly woman struggled to climb down all the steps

“If I hadn’t been on the opposite side of the tracks I would have gone across to help as I know only too well the incredible difficulty it is.

“Later on high school students had trouble getting their bikes to the platform as well.

“I am a mother of two and this is a daily struggle for me and many others!

“Every day I use Hillside to take my little boy to and from school twice a day and I also have my newborn baby in a pram too. It’s exhausting and just not right.

“Even speaking to the station manager, all they do is tell me to get off at a different station like Birkdale but that’s too far a walk to take my little boy.

“I’ve also been told it’s not their job to assist me with getting up and down the stairs safely!”

A Merseytravel Spokesperson said: “We are working to make as many of our stations as possible accessible to people with mobility problems or with prams and pushchairs.

“While we would like to make all stations accessible to all, we have to go through a process of prioritisation and apply for funding for each individual project. Considerations include land use issues, potential complexity of the scheme and cost. As a result, there are currently no immediate plans to install lifts at Hillside.

“Where possible, we would encourage those who have mobility issues to consider using either Ainsdale station or Birkdale, which have accessible platforms.”

 


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