Cradley Heath - the town that Network Rail forgot

3:42pm Wednesday 19th February 2014

CRADLEY Heath is the town Network Rail forgot as the level crossing is still closed six weeks after the accident which closed it.

Disabled passengers and mothers with pushchairs are being forced to alight at either Stourbridge or Rowley Regis.

Network Rail bosses promised the barriers would be fixed within a few days after a vehicle crashed into the crossing on January 13.

Stephanie Peacock, Labour's parliamentary candidate for Halesowen and Rowley Regis, demanded Network Rail take action.

She said: "If this was a train station in London is would be fully open now. But because we are in the West Midlands local people are being ignored.

"It's not just the closure of the road that is unacceptable it's the fact that disabled customers and people pushing wheelchairs cannot exit the station without having to cross the bridge."

She added: "Disabled passengers and those who cannot get over the bridge have to stop off at Stourbridge where a lift is in operation, and then wait for a a Birmingham bound train that stops at Cradley Heath on the other platform.

"It's simple unacceptable that a modern rail network would punish customers for so long in this way. It shouldn't take two months to mend a broken level crossing gate.

"I've written to the Chief Executive of Network Rail demanding he takes immediate steps to rectify this situation."

She added: "Cradley Heath deserves better than this. Thirteen and half thousand people travel to and from Cradley Heath every week. "They pay good money for their tickets. It's not unreasonable for them to expect a decent standard of repairs at the station."

Network Rail originally said the crossing would be open a few days after the crash and then three weeks ago said it would be open within the next week.

Network Rail were unavailable for comment as the News went to press.

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