Plans to redesign station platform buildings go out to consultation

A multi-million pound regeneration programme for Fenland’s railway stations is still very much on track, with the launch of a public consultation on the next project planned.

By Joel Lamy
Saturday, 18th April 2020, 5:00 am

Just weeks after the installation of new platform waiting shelters at Manea and Whittlesea stations, plans to redesign and improve the layout of Platform 1 buildings at March station are moving full steam ahead.

Both projects are part of the £9.5 million Fenland Stations Regeneration Project funded by the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority and driven by Fenland District Council on behalf of the Hereward Community Rail Partnership.

A consultation on the Platform 1 buildings at March Station has now been launched to seek people’s views on three different layout design options.

March station

The main entrance to Platform 1 remains the same throughout the three designs, but there are different options for the location and size of the waiting room, ticket office and toilets, as well as space for the creation of a new shop or business premises.

Public consultation events are unable to go ahead due to the coronavirus pandemic but people can have their say via an online survey at: www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/marchstation. The survey runs until Saturday, May 9.

Cllr Chris Seaton, Fenland District Council’s portfolio holder for transport, said: “The existing layout of buildings on Platform 1 does not make the best use of the available space. The rooms also look tired and are in need of improvement to meet the standard of a modern day railway station.

“March Railway Station is recognised as a building of significant local interest with historical charm and character that is important to the local community. It is our intention to reconfigure the room layouts to improve the facilities for commuters and visitors to the station in a sympathetic manner. I would urge people to take part in the consultation and help shape the future of the station.”

Mayor James Palmer, leader of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority, said: “We’re investing heavily in Fenland rail services and that money is all about creating a better journey for passengers along this line.

“Whether it’s fit-for-purpose new buildings at March, or shelters at Whittlesea and Manea, it’s fantastic to get improvements that make a difference to people’s travel and will help the area feature more on the tourist map. I hope as many people as possible will have their say on the options for March’s platform, choosing a 21st century style that works for the community and its history.”

Alan Neville, customer and community engagement manager at Greater Anglia, which manages March station, said: “We’re delighted to work with the Hereward Line Community Rail Partnership and the funding partners to breathe new life into March station, helping to secure the building’s future and bring it back into use for the benefit of rail passengers and the community.”