Saxilby: MP condemns plans to close railway crossing over Christmas

Edward Leigh MP
Edward Leigh MP

Gainsborough MP Sir Edward Leigh has slammed plans by Network Rail to close a rail crossing at Saxilby that would leave residents ‘cut of’ over Christmas.

Network Rail plans to upgrade the level crossing at West Bank, cutting the road off from Saxilby for two weeks over the Christmas holiday.

Sir Edward has written to the chief executive of Network Rail to ask him to reconsider the plans.

“This situation is completely unacceptable and cannot be allowed,” he wrote.

“Network Rail proposes to cut these residents off from the rest of the world at the height of the Christmas season.”

“While I understand that plans have been made for ambulance access, it nonetheless presents a very real danger if any incident requiring the emergency services should take place.”

“More than 50 people live in West Bank and it is simply intolerable for them to be out through these laborious restrictions, even more so at what is normally a festive time of year.”

“I urge you strenuously to reconsider Network Rail’s plans and present an alternative that will be acceptable to the residents of West Bank.”

The rail crossing, which connects West Bank in Saxilby to the rest of Lincolnshire, will be closed for two weeks from 20th December.

The work is part of a £280 million project to upgrade the entire Northern Great Eastern train network and will see the old wooden barriers at Saxilby replaced with a new, safer crossing.

The company has had two meetings with local residents to discuss the plans, and says it is making arrangements to allow access to emergency services and refuse collections.

It will also provide a round the clock minibus service to take residents from the small footbridge over the crossing to their cars.

What do you think about the closure? Will the inconvenience be worth it for a new and safer crossing?

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By Claire O’Neill

Twitter: @ClaireyOneill