Crossing work delay due to access issue

THE delay over work starting on a Spalding railway crossing was down to a misunderstanding between Lincolnshire County Council and Network Rail over pedestrian access.

Our sister paper, the Spalding Guardian, reported last Thursday about the apparent lack of work at the Mill Green crossing in Woolram Wygate.

The scheduled six-week road closure – for Network Rail to replace the crossing gates with full barriers – was implemented last Monday but little, if any, work was seen throughout last week.

It finally got under way on Friday.

Network Rail was already under fire from locals for not scheduling the work during a 12-week closure of the Woolram Wygate/Pinhbeck Road junction, which only finished in November.

South Holland district councillor Gary Taylor joined the clamour for work to progress quickly, adding: “It’s a major Spalding junction. Thousands of vehicles use that road.”

Now it has emerged that Network Rail was apparently unaware that the county council was insistent that pedestrian access be maintained from the outset.

Martyn Allen, network development manager for the county council, said: ”There was always a need for pedestrian access to be maintained while this work takes place.

“We’ve discussed the matter with Network Rail and they are going to have someone controlling gated access for pedestrians until the work is completed.”

A spokesperson for Network Rail said: “Work to replace the crossing started on Friday and is due to be completed by February 27.

“A diversionary route is in place for vehicles but pedestrian access will be maintained via gated entrances and exits which will be manned 24 hours a day.

“We apologise to local people for any inconvenience this essential work will cause.”