CRA 2012 winner - Station of the Year
Southport Cycle Centre
Judges were particularly impressed with Southport’s relationship with the British Transport Police and the enthusiasm of the staff. They also highlighted the quantifiable results coming out of the Cycle Centre project and the use of funding to drive successful and pioneering initiatives.
Merseyrail has always been a cycle-friendly Train Operating Company – the only one offering unrestricted cycle carriage on trains since 1996. The award of £950,000 Department for Transport funding for the Abellio bike hire scheme and additional secure shelters gave the TOC the opportunity to extend cycle facilities to 80% of its stations – rising to 100% should its latest bid for additional DfT funding be successful.
Southport is Merseyrail’s busiest station outside of Liverpool in a popular seaside town with a massive footfall of 3,108,000 people. Many commuters, leisure travellers and visitors enjoy the secure cycle storage and hire facilities on offer, with secure parking for 122 cycles and a hire and repair facility on site.
A key endorsement of the facility is that the Neighbourhood Policing Team (part of the British Transport Police) has started rolling out cycles to many police stations across the North West in a bid to tackle anti-social behaviour issues in and around the network. The new BTP mountain bikes will be maintained in the Southport Cycle Centre.
This initiative is a real example of successful joined-up working, with Merseytravel and Sefton, Wirral, Cheshire West and Chester Councils providing support, advice and funding.
The statistics speak for themselves. Nearly 300 customers have signed up to Merseyrail’s “Go Cycle” scheme at Southport and use it on a regular basis – a 40% increase on last year.
Kaj Mook, Customer Service Director at train operating company Merseyrail, who manage Southport Station and Cycle Centre told us: “This is a great result for Merseyrail. We’ve worked especially hard to promote the Go Cycle scheme, and are delighted that it has proved so popular. Next year, we aim to get even more people cycling to and from railway stations.”