Chase Line commuter rail stations land crime-busting awards
One of the region’s key commuter rail lines has landed a top award for keeping passengers safe from crime.
Every station on the Chase Line between Tame Bridge Parkway and Rugeley Town has now been awarded Secure Station Accreditation by the Department for Transport after undergoing a rigorous assessment
Judges from the Secure Station Scheme travelled the line inspecting facilities at the stations and interviewing passengers, asking questions such as how safe they felt using the train and what they felt could be done to improve it.
The initiative rewards operators who reduce crime and anti-social behaviour at rail stations. It also advises operators, designers and architects on how to develop better and safer environments. The award follows a number of initiatives by the Safer Travel Partnership, which involves transport authority Centro, West Midlands Police, British Transport Police and National Express, to deter crime and anti-social behaviour on the network.
The stations also underwent a £900,000 package of improvements last year by Centro, train operator London Midland and Network Rail including crime-busting CCTV cameras, improved lighting and fencing and new passenger shelters.
The number of offences on the Chase Line fell by more than 25 per cent last year over the 12 months up to March 31 this year.
Centro’s Lead Member for Transforming Rail Travel, Cllr Roger Horton, said: “The Safer Travel Team has been very successful in keeping crime low on the Chase Line and that’s great news for passengers.
“These Secure Station awards are a reflection of that hard work in partnership with train operator London Midland as well as the recent station improvements such as CCTV cameras and better lighting which have both helped to deter crime.”
Richard Brooks, Commercial Director at London Midland, said: "We are delighted that we have succeeded in achieving the Secure Station awards at these locations.
“There have been significant improvements made at the stations which have resulted in a substantial reduction in crime and anti-social behaviour, and an improvement in customer satisfaction regarding personal safety and security.
“London Midland will continue to work in partnership to achieve further station accreditations across the network."
British Transport Police Inspector Lee Gordon, from the Safer Travel Police Team, added: “The Secure Stations Scheme is an important element in helping to make the rail network secure, reassuring passengers and staff, and ensuring the continued success of the industry. The rail network is a low crime environment and one where increasing resources are being put into combating anti-social behaviour and disorder.
“However, if we are going to drive down crime and anti-social behaviour further, we need to continue to work together with all of our partners in the industry in a smarter and more planned way. That is what the Secure Stations Scheme can offer - a meaningful measure of better co-operative working between station operators and the police to help cut crime and ensure passengers feel safe when using the stations they travel to and from.”