Media Release: New courtesy service for passengers with disabilities

LEADING fit-out, housing and maintenance providers, Morris & Spottiswood, has won a contract to manufacture accessible serving counters, the first of their kind to be used anywhere in the UK, to assist passengers with a range of disabilities travelling through First ScotRail railway stations across the country.

First ScotRail passengers are set to benefit from this contract, thanks to new accessible ‘Courtesy Counters’ which will be installed in ticket offices at a number of stations. These can be raised or lowered at the touch of a button, thereby creating improved convenience when making enquiries and bookings.

The counters include a facility for customers to attach their walking sticks and crutches, as well as an induction loop and electronic speech enhancement for those that require hearing aids.

Thanks to funding from the Department for Transport’s Access for All Small Schemes fund, and from First ScotRail’s Minor Works programme, passengers at Alexandria, Drumchapel, Hamilton West, Bellshill, Cambuslang, Hamilton Central Bishopton and Mount Florida stations have been the first to benefit from the new service.

A roll out across eight further stations by the end of November – with a further nine to follow by the end of March 2009 – will mean thousands of people travelling through First ScotRail stations stand to benefit from the new service facilities.

Peter Williams, commercial director at First ScotRail, said: “The work delivered as a result of this contract award will provide a facility that has the flexibility and convenience to suit all our customers when using our ticket offices.

“We will continue to drive forward improvements which increase the level of customer service we are providing and we look forward to Morris & Spottiswood delivering these enhancements.”

The design and development of the Courtesy Counter has been carried out by Glasgow-based firm, Sonnika Limited, which specialises in producing accessibility solutions for organisations looking to provide better facilities for people with disabilities.

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Contact: Jen Nash
Phone: 07971 466 220