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Ilkeston’s first train services in over 50 years are getting closer with the new station opening in less than a week on Sunday 2 April.
The multi-million pound new station built by Network Rail and managed by East Midlands Trains, will give local Ilkeston residents direct access to Nottingham station and other locations including Liverpool, Norwich, Sheffield, Leeds and Manchester.
The brand new station, which will also include services from Northern Rail, will hopefully get people out of their cars and on to trains, cutting local road congestion and pollution.
The station, constructed as part of a £10million investment programme funded by the Department for Transport, Derbyshire County Council and the Nottingham Housing Market area, was built by Network Rail in partnership with East Midlands Trains and Northern Rail.
Jake Kelly, Managing Director of East Midlands Trains, said: “The opening of Ilkeston station will be a truly historic day and we can’t wait for the first services to start. The station and services will bring many advantages for the local communities we serve and the wider region as a whole.
“Customers will be able to get to the centre of Nottingham quickly during the week and at weekends as well as further afield locations in the North West, Yorkshire and East Anglia. The new services will hopefully bring economic advantages to the area and cut down on car use locally as people are encouraged to use greener ways to travel.
“The station opening has been a long time coming and we’re delighted that our customers will see the benefits from the very start – a brand new car park, fully accessible platforms, modern waiting areas and, most importantly, regular services running through the station seven days a week.”
Derbyshire County Council’s Strategic Director for Economy, Transport and Communities, Mike Ashworth said: “The county council recognised the benefits a station could bring to Ilkeston – which is why we led the march to get the funding in place and make it happen.
“Local people can now use the train to get to Nottingham and further afield to Sheffield, Chesterfield, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester and Norwich, cutting journey times, opening up job opportunities and reducing congestion.
“We know having a train station makes a town a more desirable place to live and set up business and so we’re looking forward to seeing the economic benefits the station will bring to Ilkeston and the surrounding area.”
Network Rail’s Rob McIntosh, route managing director for the London North Eastern and East Midlands, said: “We have worked closer than ever with our partners to achieve this significant upgrade to the line which will connect Ilkeston to key towns and cities across the full breadth of country by rail for the first time in a generation. These greater transport links will bring significant economic benefits to the whole region and demonstrate the vital role rail plays in generating growth, creating jobs and developing housing. I’m delighted that after so long, Ilkeston can once again celebrate having a main line station which will meet the needs of the communities and economies our railway serves.”
Paul Barnfield, Regional Director at Northern, said: “The re-opening of Ilkeston station is a significant milestone for the rail industry and, more importantly, for the local community. We are delighted to be able to offer services to Nottingham and Sheffield from the new station and look forward to welcoming customers from Ilkeston and the surrounding area.
“The opening of the stations comes at a significant time for Northern as we are in the early stages of modernisation plans which will see the refurbishment of our entire fleet, improvements at all stations, and the introduction of 281 brand new carriages. All features our customers in Ilkeston will be able to enjoy.”
Maggie Throup MP for Erewash, said: “9:45am on Sunday 2nd April 2017 is a historic day in the life of our town as Ilkeston finally reconnects with the rest of the rail network after an interval of over 50 years.
“The new £10 million station project, which was made possible by a £6.6 million Government infrastructure grant administered through the New Stations Fund, will give a significant boost to the local economy and attract new people to our town.”
East Midlands Trains’ new station at Ilkeston is the newest station to be built in the country and will be served by 18 services to and from Nottingham each weekday as well as running near hourly weekend services.
Facilities at the station include a brand new 90-space car park (free for the first two weeks), two platforms with services going south direct to Nottingham and as far north as Manchester and Liverpool. Services also call at landmarks such as Norwich, Leeds and Sheffield. The station is fully accessible with two platforms connected by a footbridge and modern ticket machines to help customers find the best ticket for their journey.