Closure of taxi rank at Chichester station is bad news for disabled passengers

The net effect of the proposed taxi rank closure is to deprive taxi drivers of income, boost Network Rail’s coffers with high priced parking permits and cause yet a further impediment to the disabled whether rail users or not.

Taxi rank outside Chichester station
Taxi rank outside Chichester station

Both sets of steps over the railway are steep and pose difficulties to anyone with relatively mild mobility issues.

The lift under the tracks is not accessible when the barriers are shut without possessing a train ticket/when minimal staff are not available to open them, as well as there being a number of occasions when the lift is not working due to service or electrical issues.

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Further, the crossing itself is frequently extremely busy with much jostling and consequent risk of falls, accidents, etc, with two opposing streams of pedestrian traffic endeavouring to cross at the same time, the minute the barriers go up. (I was once saved from schoolchildren barging by a quick thinking local security guard).

Network Rail is supposed to be enabling disabled access as part of its overall objectives. This proposal flies in the face of that.

It all seems, yet again, to be about profit (from the lucrative sale of parking permits) and not about people and their needs.

Helen C Hawdon, Stockbridge Road, Chichester