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Rail station more jungle than the National Forest

Monday 14th March 2011 (Andrew Griffiths)
Rail station more jungle than the National Forest

BURTON Railway Station sends out a ‘terrible message’ to tourists and visitors stepping off the platform, the town’s MP has claimed.

Andrew Griffiths’s latest attack was targeted at the National Forest garden located on the platform behind the waiting room at the station.

Mr Griffiths claims the garden, which is supposed to embody the National Forest, is overgrown and full of rubbish.

He said: “I think I have long been a critic of the first impression we make with the train station.

“I have been increasingly frustrated by the state of the floral display there. I am pleased we are the gateway to the National Forest, but to people arriving in Burton it looks like the gateway to somebody’s backyard jungle.

“It is overgrown, full of weeds and discarded rubbish, empty bottles and crisp packets.

“It sends a terrible message about what people can expect Burton to be like.” The Tory MP said the railway station was too focused on the National Forest and should make more of Burton’s heritage as a brewing town.

He said: “Rather than a sign about the National Forest, I would much rather the visitors came across a fresh new sign at the station saying Burton is the home of Britain’s brewing industry.

“I would like to see a brewing trail advertised, with maps showing people the best real ale pubs, such as the Burton Bridge and The Old Cottage Tavern, and giving out information about the National Brewery Centre and other local attractions.” The MP said he would write to Network Rail to try to tackle the problem.

The station was previously lampooned by local historian Arthur Roe, who criticised the overgrown weeds in and around the building.

Mr Roe said: “We have been fobbed off by the railway authorities. They are not interested in Burton at all. I have not got a clue why.

“No-one seems interested in the town.

Everything is about the National Forest and not the brewing. As a visitor, I would get back on the train.” EastMidland Trains, which runs the station, previously said the matter had been referred to its vegetation control team.

Last year, Network Rail announced a £700,000 revamp of the station and Mr Griffiths is set to lobby Network Rail to spend some of this money improving the aesthetics of the building and platform.

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