MSP offers to pay for railway station bench

Mr Kerr has written to bosses hoping to cut out the red tape by simply purchasing a standard wooden bench
Mr Kerr has written to bosses hoping to cut out the red tape by simply purchasing a standard wooden bench

A North East MSP has offered to personally pay for a bench to allow passengers at Stonehaven railway station, particularly those with restricted mobility, to take a seat.

Scottish Conservative Liam Kerr has written to Scotrail bosses offering a “straightforward” solution, following a letter last month in which he highlighted the lack of any suitable seating provision outside the station.

Scotrail has said any such improvements would be paid for through the UK Access for All fund, which has covered the cost of upgrades at 22 stations in Scotland. In a written response, Scotrail also said the station is also a Grade B listed building, which means consent would be required for any associated works.

Now Mr Kerr has written to bosses hoping to cut out the “red tape” by simply purchasing a standard wooden bench – similar to those sold at DIY stores up and down the country – and delivering it to be installed outside Stonehaven station entrance.

Mr Kerr said: “As a regular user of the train station at Stonehaven, I have first-hand experience of the lack of any seating outside.

“I also met a constituent, Walter Burnett, who has highlighted the problem. I think it a disgrace that people with disabilities, older people and those with restricted mobility are expected to stand.

“I understand that for organisations like Scotrail, there can often be a lot of red tape to be navigated before anything can be done.

“But this is a problem that needs a solution now. If you want something done, do it yourself.

"So my offer is to drive over to a local DIY store, buy a bench and deliver it to the station. I have offered to buy a security lock to go with it and have asked permission to site it next to the entrance.

“I hope that Scotrail will accept my offer by return in which case I can get it sorted out this weekend.”