MP backs rail station barriers campaign

THE Liberal Democrat transport spokesman Norman Baker MP has joined the campaign opposing the installation of ticket barriers at Sheffield railway station.

In a letter to Sheffield Council, the MP says that he believes installing barriers would ruin the appearance of the station and would cause difficulties for people who use the bridge as a safe route into the city centre.

He also said he would write to East Midlands Trains and urge them not to install the barriers.

Leader of Sheffield Council, Paul Scriven, said: "It's great news that the campaign has received support from the national spokesman of one of the major parties.

"We just hope that others in Westminster now listen and act to prevent East Midlands Trains gating the station."

Installing ticket barriers at the station would prevent non-rail passengers using the bridge over the tracks to get from Sheaf Square to the tram line on the other site.

Campaigners say that the bridge, which was built using public money, is a safe, disabled-friendly route and should not be closed off.

Coun Scriven added: "East Midlands Trains have consistently ignored local people on this matter.

"We are calling on the Government to not do the same. They must change their mind on this issue and step in."

Barriers are regarded as an effective way of preventing passengers using trains without buying tickets, but in Sheffield they would affect those who use the railway station as a thoroughfare.