Rail improvements ‘top priority’ Leader told

Published Thursday 26 April 2018

The Leader of the district council says he is pleased that a major project to improve Market Harborough’s railway station remains a “top priority”.

Neil bannister
Neil Bannister HDC Leader, with Louise Smith and Christine Boulter from Cats Protection

In January Councillor Neil Bannister, Leader of Harborough District Council, asked for assurances  from Network Rail around proposed improvements to Market Harborough railway station following the collapse of the firm involved in the project.

Cllr Bannister (pictured) raised concerns, on behalf of the council, that much-needed improvements to Market Harborough railway station and car park could be affected after construction firm Carillion, which is carrying out the work on behalf of Network Rail, went into liquidation, and asked for assurances the project would continue as planned.

In a letter to Cllr Bannister, received this week, Network Rail said that it was continuing to work hard to provide continuity for the project at Market Harborough and that this will continue to be a “top priority”.

A spokesman for Network Rail said: “Since the announcement [about Carillion] Network Rail’s aim has been to minimise the impact on rail infrastructure projects and the wider supply chain…whilst ensuring that we have robust contingency plans in place for all affected works.”

Network Rail said that many of the contracts previously operated by Carillion, such as the Market Harborough scheme, have now been acquired by Amey Rail and that it was working to “keep up the momentum required to deliver the project”.

Cllr Bannister said: “Clearly this is not an ideal situation but I am pleased that Network Rail understands the importance of this project and is working hard to ensure it goes ahead. This is a hugely important project for this district and I will continue to liaise with Network Rail on behalf of residents as it moves forward.”