Southeastern’s continuing investment in a better railway to encourage passengers back to public transport will be highlighted this week with work set to begin on modernised facilities for passengers and measures to improve the security of the railway.
£120,000 will be invested in the modernisation of station waiting rooms at Gillingham, Gravesend and Herne Bay, including new seating, heating and lighting, passenger information systems, charging points and interior decoration - including wood-effect laminate flooring to create a warmer and more welcoming environment – as well as improved security with additional CCTV.
- The booking hall at Canterbury East will be refurbished, as will the customer toilets at Lewisham.
- The Grade II listed Margate and Ramsgate stations, both of which recently featured in the TV programme, The Architecture The Railways Built, will have over £160,000 spent on ‘decluttering’ the main atrium areas – removing redundant furniture, fixtures and cables, repainting ceilings and entrance doors, and cleaning and polishing the original parquet flooring. This is part of a longer-term project to enhance and preserve the architectural and heritage features of these buildings.
- A number of stations across the network will also receive new seating and benches, while design work will begin shortly on a new-style station meeting room ‘hub’ concept, that could be rolled out more widely on the Southeastern network.
- At Higham, the installation of an Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) system will complement the recently completed car park upgrade, before which cars were previously forced to park on rough ground, while planting will be introduced at Folkestone West car park to improve the environment immediately outside the station.
- At 34 station car parks, new motion-sensor LED lighting will be installed to improve security and save energy, with lighting levels reduced to 20% when no-one is in the vicinity – reducing the carbon footprint of the station.
- Waterloo East will have also have work undertaken to replace the dated tiling and handrails on the ramp leading towards the main Waterloo station.
- At Hollingbourne Southeastern is refurbishing a closed station building, no longer in use by passengers, to be used and operated by the local community for events such as cinema nights. Electrical works, structural and window repairs will be carried out while toilets will also be reinstated.
- Additional CCTV will also be installed at various train depots and sidings across the network to improve security, and deter would-be vandals from damaging or defacing the railway
David Wornham, Passenger Services Director for Southeastern, said:
“Our number one priority is to win back our customers and reverse the shift from public transport to cars that occurred during the pandemic.
“Passengers will benefit from this investment going to the places where it is needed the most to make station environments across our network more comfortable, and more attractive, and reduce our own carbon footprint.”