DISABLED people in Wiltshire are at an advantage when it comes to using trains as the county's accessible facilities are better than more than a third of other train stations in the South West which fail to offer simple step free access to platforms.

As the public prepares for one of the busiest weekends of the year for travel, research shows more than a third of rail stations across England, Scotland and Wales are still not step-free, however stations including Trowbridge, Westbury, Melksham, Chippenham and Pewsey have full step free access to all platforms.

Trowbridge, Warminster, Westbury and Chippenham also have wheelchairs available where Melksham and Pewsey doesn’t, and Warminster, Westbury, Chippenham and Pewsey have staff on hand to offer help with access for disabled people.

Karren Tilley from Westbury catches the train regularly with her 13-year-old daughter Josselin who uses a wheelchair full time.

She said: “We have only ever had positive experiences at the train stations locally, and I am always especially impressed with Westbury station.

“The staff are so helpful and you can always ask them for a hand.

“It is because of this that we take the train a lot and always feel comfortable doing so.

“The staff will get out the ramps, get you on first and even let you sit in first class. This is what all stations should be like.”

Outside Wiltshire and across the UK, the government is set to miss its own targets for making all railway stations step-free by 40 years, analysis by the disability charity Leonard Cheshire reveals.

Neil Heslop, chief executive of Leonard Cheshire, said: “As families enjoy the festive season together, accessibility issues will add unnecessary stress to disabled travellers who negotiate a sub-standard network every day.

“We call on Boris Johnson to prioritise this, so disabled people can enjoy accessible rail travel.”