Blog of @AndyKinsey,
Labour Councillor for Hyde Werneth.

A Strong Positive Voice for Hyde

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Northern Rail Failing Customers at #UnsafeStation #Fairfield - Updated (again)

As someone who works with local communities around Tameside, and works for a living in Manchester, I travel across Greater Manchester by train almost everyday of the week. As such I know the good, the bad and the ugly stations across Manchester, I know that in Tameside we’ve got a few stations needing attention for reasons such as making them accessible for disabled or elderly residents. But I seldom would consider a train station to be unsafe, I don’t usually find myself thinking “I wouldn’t use that station”. So the words “unsafe station” don’t come easily, and I don’t use them lightly - but here is the story as to why I feel that Fairfield Station is today an Unsafe Station.

On 17th Oct I first noticed that the lights at Fairfield train station were not working on one platform - this just a few days after their newly installed cctv had been ripped out by vandals. -

A few days later I noticed the other side had gone out, leaving just one light on the platform toward guide bridge lighting the station. (21st) -

Northern replied that evening saying it would be looked into. 

A few days later (24th) the lights appeared fixed, i gave them applause on twitter for acting to make the station safe. On the 28th once again the lights were out at the station on both sides -

The next day they were back on … but then the following day lights again were out at the station. On the 1st Nov lights were still out and I declared the station to be an #unsafestation - I don’t get off there as i live in hyde, but i spoke to a few people who were regulars at the station and they said that it felt uncomfortable walking in the dark up the path “anyone could be hidden in the trees” and one elderly lady told me she would be getting off at guide bridge and getting a family member to drive them home when the lights were out they felt so unsafe.

I then tweeted again on the 6th with the lights still out at the station.

And again on the 12th, and again for the past few days.

Northern Rail tell me on twitter that they have had engineers out, which is good stuff but following a month of less light than light at the station, cctv ripped out and customers feeling unsafe - I now feel the need to reach out and ask for some help in pushing northern to not only fix the lights but make the station feel safe for all in the community. 

So this evening I’ve reached out to ask for help in getting this station fixed once and for all. 

I have talked to local MP Andrew Gwynne (@gwynnemp) and he has immediately began work to get this issue fixed for local residents. He too believes that this situation is not acceptable (tweet).

If you would like to help us ensure the Northern Rail make Fairfield station safe for all of it’s users - simply tweet the message below.

”.@northernrailorg please make #fairfield a Safe Station by fixing the lights at the station // cc @andykinsey”


Fairfield Station c. 1905 - Today only the two central tracks remain. Photo by Disused Stations

Update: 4/12/13

After around a week of one side having lights back on (guide bridge bound) this evening both sides are yet again out of action. Dark nights are drawing in I have once again alerted Northern Rail of this - who in turn have let me know ISS (northerns engineers of choice) are no longer dealing with the issue and it’s now in the hands of Network Rail - hopefully this means there will soon be a solution.

Update: 9/12/13

The saga continues and it will be at least 30th December before the lights are fixed properly by Network Rail. I suggested Temporary lighting again and was told to email them, I have and as promised on twitter they will be public and can be found by clicking “northern rail fails" in the sidebar.