Skip to main content

Accessible Travel Information

Volume 530: debated on Thursday 23 June 2011

10. If he will bring forward proposals to ensure the provision of accessible public travel information for blind and partially sighted people. (61515)

The Department is committed to improving accessible transport information that is available to enable people to plan their full journey. For example, the development of a journey planner for spectators going to the Olympics has provided an important new opportunity to achieve high standards of accessible information.

I thank the Minister for that answer, but has he had any discussions with the railway operators, particularly in relation to the implications of cuts in the staffing of railway stations for people with disabilities?

Matters relating to individual stations are, of course, ultimately ones for the franchise holder, but we have offered financial support for new information systems at more than 170 railway stations since 2006 and audio-visual passenger systems have been mandatory for all new rail vehicles since 1998.

I received a visit from my constituent, Lionel Broughton, on this matter with regard to buses. My local bus company, Stagecoach, has said that it will look at introducing visual and voice announcements on its fleet. Can the Minister do anything to give the industry a nudge?

I am delighted to say that I wrote to the Confederation of Passenger Transport, which represents the main bus operators, on 23 May, to give exactly that nudge.