The building for the new Green Park train station was given the green light by councillors on Wednesday, September 4 but with one condition.

Reading Borough Council’s (RBC) planning committee backed the proposal but insisted that further consideration is given to providing fully accessible 24-hour toilet facilities as part of the new station building.

The building will include a ticket and enquiry desk, ticket office, staff rest and toilet facilities, male and female toilets, one accessible outside toilet, a baby change facility, self-service ticket machines and shops.

Councillor Jo Lovelock, former leader of the council, said: “If the council can’t get accessibility right with a brand new building we should be ashamed of ourselves.”

Plans for the station, which  is due to be complete in summer 2020, currently  include one accessible toilet with access from a platform.

Disabled users will have to use a RADAR key to enter the toilet at hours when the building is not staffed.

Labour councillor Karen Rowland said outdoor access to an accessible toilet is a problem because people will have to go onto a busy platform.

She added that cold and wind affect people in a wheelchair more than able bodied people.

Councillors agreed that access from the inside would be an improvement.

The council’s Access and Disability Working Group (ADWG) have previously raised concern over the development as well as putting forward suggestions for how the station can be as accessible as possible.

Members of ADWG said the disabled toilet is too small and outside toilets are prone to vandalism.

The RBC transport team said GWR had requested for the toilet to have access from the outside  rather than inside.

Councillor Emmett McKenna, chair of the committee, said: “I am not going to accept a scheme that doesn’t have an accessible out of hours toilet.”

Conservative councillor Jane Stanford-Beale called for the council to go a step further and demand a Changing Places toilet be built at the new station.

She said: “I am disappointed that we haven’t tried to think big. We should be designing and having that in at the first instance.”