CAMPAIGNERS have called for urgent action to make more railway stations in Renfrewshire step-free, as research shows more than half do not have full disabled access.

Johnstone, Lochwinnoch, Howwood, Bishopton and Paisley St James are not step-free, while Milliken Park, Paisley Gilmour Street, Hawkhead and Paisley Canal all are.

Step-free means passengers can access all areas of a station and can get between platforms without stairs.

While Johnstone is in line for increased funding to make it step-free in the next four years, there is little sign of any of the others getting this treatment.

Councillor Emma Rodden, who represents Johnstone North, Howwood, Kilbarchan and Lochwinnoch, has campaigned extensively to get Lochwinnoch station made step-free, as there is currently no wheelchair access to platform two.

Quadruple amputee Corinne Hutton has also got behind the effort to have the station overhauled.

Cllr Rodden said campaigners have been told by the Department for Transport that the station does not fit the criteria for an upgrade – but she insists the fight will continue.

“We were told there could be scope for changes in the future and we are exploring other options as a council,” she added.

“I will keep fighting because it’s so important everyone has the equal opportunity to be able to pop to the shops if they need to.

“It’s not just disabled people who are affected, it’s also mums with prams and anyone with mobility issues.”

A recent report by disability charity Leonard Cheshire found that almost half of Scotland’s train stations are inaccessible to many disabled travellers due to not being step-free.

The charity is now campaigning for legislation to ensure all stations are step-free by 2030.

A Network Rail spokesperson said: “Many of the country’s stations date from the Victorian period and were not designed with the needs of all travellers in mind. We are working closely with government to improve access.”

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