The UK Department for Transport (DfT) has revealed a number of new measures and initiatives that will help ensure easier travel for disabled people across the country’s transport network, including the railway.

Comprising a series of initiatives in partnerships with industry stakeholders, the DfT’s Transport Strategy aims to make travel accessible for passengers with both visible and less visible disabilities by 2030.

As part of the move, the UK Government has promised investments in rail accessibility infrastructure, as well as commitments to produce league tables highlighting operators that are delivering the best services for disabled people.

Up to £300m will be set aside to fund the extension of the Access for All programme, which focuses on making railway stations more accessible through initiatives such as step-free access. The government also pledged to raise awareness and enforcement of passengers’ rights, staff training and improvements to accessible information.

Covid-19 Report — Updated twice a week Understanding the Covid-19 outbreak, the economic impact and implications for specific sectors

Covid-19 executive briefing report cover

Our parent business intelligence company

UK Transport Accessibility Minister Nusrat Ghani said: “Transport is at the heart of how we live our lives. It helps us get to work, stay in touch with friends and family, and access vital services like healthcare and education.

“But for our ageing population and the fifth of people who are disabled, access to transport can be far from straightforward. This Inclusive Transport Strategy is the first step in achieving a genuinely inclusive transport network, which meets the needs of all people, regardless of whether they are disabled or not.”

Also included in the Transport Strategy is a plan to support the Rail Delivery Group to improve and simplify Passenger Assist, the system disabled passengers use to book assistance on the rail network. The DfT committed to holding train operators to account for delivering on such a service and to ensuring they compensate passengers if the booked assistance is not provided.

How concerned are you about spread of Coronavirus?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Welcoming the announcement, the Rail Delivery Group tweeted: “The government’s Inclusive Transport Strategy, backed by £300million of funding, will support our goal to increase access to rail alongside industry projects for more step-free access, developing a new universal ramp and an app to simplify and speed up station assistance.”