Worcestershire Parkway

Worcestershire County Council have a Public Engagement Exercise for the proposed Worcestershire Parkway station.

Although I support the concept of this station I do not like the ‘spin’ of the engagement exercise. It’s car and building centric and does not look at the whole of Worcestershire. This also applies to the questionnaire.

The first benefit that is listed is “A rail journey between Worcester and London of 2 hours or less”. This is 2 hours or less is only the rail journey what should be looked at its total journey time. This will only be better for those on the right side of Worcester and the Severn. In fact for existing stations in Malvern and Worcester times and service may get worse.  This could be seen as taking business away from Worcester and giving it to London as is may discourage people from going into the city itself.

Also the station looks like the cheapest that could be done. “As part of this scheme the single platform on the North Cotswold Line will be designed to be compatible with the redoubling at some stage in the future.” Why not at least double the North Cotswold Line through the new station. If this is not done then when a train is stopped in the new station is will block the Line in both directions.

Also there is no platform on the line that is used by the Malvern/Worcester trains to Bristol. This in the future may mean that this service is reduced, again not helping the services from the existing stations in Malvern and Worcester.

Although there is a section on timetabling is does not give any information on how the timetables will change. There is no mention of using this station as an interchange between the two rail lines, this could be a benefit but is depends on the time tabling. This also applies effects of the existing Worcestershire rail users. Also there is the statement “Direct access to local bus services through a bus / rail interchange”. What local bus services? Given the recent cuts will there be any?

In general this is part of the lack of an integrated transport system, or plans for one, in Worcestershire and England (outside London).  This is not helped by the post privatisation structure of the railways with at least two Train Operating Companies involved.

This comment is negative and I wish I could be more positive, I do support the building of this station and it will reduce the length some car journeys, but they still have to be driven to the station, but I think a more holistic approach would help reduce the car use more.

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