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'Eyesores' have appeared outside Manchester Piccadilly station

New concrete blocks have appeared outside Manchester Piccadilly train station 'to improve passenger safety and security'.

The blocks have been built across the walkway towards the main entrance of the station in the city centre from Piccadilly Gardens, as well as on the side of the pathway close to the road. Walk Ride GM, who campaign to make walking and cycling the natural choice for everyday journeys across our region, described the blocks - which are currently unpainted - as an 'eyesore'.

But Network Rail said only the first stage of works has been done and that by late Spring, they will be adorned with the Manchester bee and lettering and that new seating and flower beds will be installed. The blocks are designed to 'improve passenger safety and security in line with national standards'.

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Similar measures have been installed on other busy city centre streets as a counter-terrorism measure. Along Peter Street, concrete blocks and a metal barrier now line the road to ensure 'public safety'.

Cazz Ward, at Walk Ride GM, said the blocks are an 'eyesore' and 'obstruct pedestrian flows'. "We are concerned by the clumsy and heavy-handed approach to Hostile Vehicle Mitigation at Piccadilly Station and the Northern Quarter", she said.

"Huge concrete blocks are an eyesore, placed without regard to the quality of our public spaces. They obstruct pedestrian flows and are especially problematic for disabled people to navigate.

"Every high footfall street in the city centre is at risk of a terrorist attack so where do we stop adding these blocks across the city? When and if Hostile Vehicle Mitigation is needed, we need designers to