Pilning Station Group approached all the candidates who are standing at the General Election on December 12th at Filton & Bradley Stoke, and here are the statements that they issued –
Elaine Hardwick – Party Leader – The Citizens Movement Party UK
I fully support any improvement to local transport. Visiting Pilning Station, one can see there is much improvement and facilities is needed to bring the station into better use for residents and new visitors. The new facility The Wave, has put Pilning on the map and will encourage more visitors to the area. Therefore, we must make sure the station is fit for purpose. “
Louise Harris – Liberal Democrats
The pedestrian bridge at Pilning Station was taken out by Network Rail who claimed this was necessary because it was in the way of installing the overhead power lines. However as there are various sidings, the railway owns a lot of land around the station and could rearrange tracks if a dedicated through line were needed. I fully agree with Pilning Station Group’s vision that the station could be a valuable commuter station, if only the services were reinstated, the footbridge replaced and the car park tidied up. CCTV could be added for passenger/vehicle security. South Glos Council might need to make some minor road improvements to aid access, but that should be possible. I can see several groups of potential passengers, people who want to park and ride to Bristol and Bath, commuters to London saving a trip to Parkway, South Wales or Swindon residents working in the Severnside area. The shuttle bus that takes surfers to The Wave could also call at the station. There is likely to be house building in the area so improving public transport will be even more important. With us facing the climate emergency providing good public transport is critical. It seems a great pity that this vision could be halted for want of a footbridge.”
Jack Lopresti – the Conservative Party Candidate was approached for a statement, but did not send one in. However, you can view his letter of support for Pilning Station dated September 2019, which he wrote in his capacity of the MP representing Filton & Bradley Stoke constituency.
Mhairi Threlfall – Labour Party
Pilning station has real potential to be a valuable connection point for local residents. As Cabinet member for Transport for Bristol City Council, I supported the incredible local campaign group and my vision for Pilning station’s future would be to support the re-opening of the second platform through either the replacement of the footbridge or another alternative crossing, and so increase the number of stopping services . As much as I am a vocal supporter of the electrification project, there are options to reintroduce some form of crossing to the second platform and so open up the use of this well-sited main line station. There are other examples of small stations being used as very localised park and rides, and given Pilning’s location, a slight increase in services stopping on both platforms could give residents alternatives to driving over the bridge to Cardiff, or into Bristol City Centre. If elected, I will be a strong voice in Parliament on Transport issues, including supporting the current petition (which I hope you have signed)!”
Jenny Vernon – Green Party
As a Patchway resident who regularly uses Patchway Station, I know the value that access to regular rail services can bring. From opening up access to places,business and activities to reducing car usage (and resulting air pollution), rail services bring real practical and health benefits to communities.
Pilning Station has been very poorly treated over many years – frankly it’s a real shame. With an increase in local activities such as WildPlace and The Wave, now would be a very good time to invest in Pilning Station , where, as you rightly say, a small investment would make a real difference to the community’s ability to use it.
Unsurprisingly, theGreen Party plan to revolutionise our transport system. Partly through ending dependency on carbon and investing instead in alternatives that work better for climate and people; partly through introducing new trains, reducing fares and linking services to cycling, walking and bus routes, opening up effective access to businesses, schools, activities etc and partly through investing and developing existing stations and rail lines (especially on the fringes of cities and in rural areas), opening new rail connections and improving journey times and frequencies.
Local authorities will be funded to improve train stations, make them more user friendly and convenient for passengers and railway staff. This includes providing more public toilets and ensuring all stations are fully accessible.
As an MP, I would want to improve funding for education, health, housing and transport in Filton & Bradley Stoke – which would include upgrades to railway lines and stations, including Pilning. If we’re serious about reducing air pollution through getting cars off the road, we need to invest quickly in sustainable, ethical, linked transport. As a party, we have ambitious plans for this. And on a personal level, I am committed to ensuring Filton & Bradley Stoke residents benefit from this as quickly as possible – and upgrading Pilning Station would form a key part of this.”