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Published on : Thursday, December 24, 2015
A level crossing in Leicestershire which was closed earlier this year due to safety concerns is to be replaced by a new footbridge.Little Bowden foot crossing was closed back in August after a risk assessment determined that the amount of time people were asked to stand at the red light varied too much for it to be safe. Train movements in the area meant that on some occasions the red light would be triggered by an approaching train which would then reverse into a nearby siding and therefore never arrive at the crossing itself.
Network Rail determined that the variation in warning time– although working entirely as it should – meant that those using the crossing may grow to distrust the warnings and decide to cross when it was unsafe to.
Now Network Rail is applying for planning permission to allow a bridge to be built at Little Bowden, which crosses the Midland Main Line and sees around 200 trains a day pass through it, with the crossing set to remain closed permanently.
Designs for the bridge are currently being discussed with Leicestershire County Council, with the new footbridge potentially in place within the next 12 months.Gary Walsh, area director for Network Rail, said: “The track and signalling layout at Little Bowden is complex and with increased train movements in the area, the risk that someone would grow to distrust the crossing became too great.”
“Safety is our priority and we will close level crossings wherever an opportunity such as the one at Little Bowden presents itself. The crossing will remain closed while we work through a fast-tracked proposal for a new bridge and I would like to thank the community in the area for their patience and understanding since it first closed in the summer.”