Mayors from across England have issued the below joint statement after a consultation to close almost all rail ticket offices in the country has ended - they call for the right thing to be done by stopping the plans now.
“The train companies initially tried to push the closure of ticket offices through, under the radar. Together, we made them listen.
“Our legal challenge resulted in the operators extending the consultation process, addressing unfair accessibility issues and producing Equality Impact Assessments which are vital in assessing the plans. This meant that more people were able to have their say on the plans – and may otherwise have remained unheard.
“The law is clear that operators cannot close parts of stations without following the clear procedure set out in the Railways Act 2005. This procedure has still not been followed and the process of our legal challenge with the train firms around this remains ongoing.
“Closing ticket offices will hit the most vulnerable hardest. At a time when we need more people using the railways, these plans would have the opposite effect.
“All eyes are now on Transport Focus to see how they respond to the hundreds of thousands of responses that we believe they have received. There is still an opportunity here to do the right thing and stop these plans now.
“In the meantime, we stand firm, and we will keep fighting."
Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham
Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin
Mayor of Liverpool City-Region, Steve Rotheram
Mayor of South Yorkshire, Oliver Coppard
Article Published: 01/09/2023 16:23 PM