A CAMPAIGNER who petitioned for the increased car parking facilities at St Helens Junction rail station has expressed dismay after a key peak hour service has been switched to nearby Lea Green.

Dave Barrow-Yates, from Sutton Leach, had campaigned for increased provision at Junction to ease congestion and welcomed the creation of an expanded 240-space car park at the Sutton station in a £792,000 scheme financed through the Government Sustainable Transport Enhancement Package and Merseytravel funding.

However, Dave, 48, whose husband Christian travels to Manchester each morning on the express train, has spoken of his disbelief after timetable alterations saw the journey stop at neighbouring Lea Green each morning instead.

Dave says the issues which plagued the area around Junction has now been transferred to Lea Green and says the move seems counterintuitive after the creation of the Junction car park.

“The car park is finished and it is lying empty because all of the cars are going to Lea Green,” said Dave.

“I went round a few times to Junction (the other week) and it is just empty and when you go to Lea Green they are all parking on the pavements.

“They’re parked in the middle and all round the outside there.

“Northern knew they were planning this, why didn’t they communicate with each other? Junction has got this new car park and the express train is stopping at Lea Green operated by a different rail company.

My husband gets the train at 7.10am each day from Lea Green.

Dave added: “It also stops at Manchester Victoria instead of Piccadilly and also has two less carriages.

“This has just moved everything to Lea Green. They always ran the service but Northern has decided to pull the express from Junction and Newton. I also can’t see people driving from Newton to get it at Lea Green.

“It just seems a pity, we spent all that time campaigning for a car park at Junction and everything moves to Lea Green. What a total waste of money and time extending the car park only for them to move the express service to a different station. ”

When contacted by the Star, a Northern Rail spokesman said: “The timetable is one part of a much broader system so there are more service improvements to come.

“It was part of that and there are far more improvements to come. There are updates to come and improvements to services.

“We can’t give that out because we are still working on these plans.”