Last chance to raise concerns about proposal for Travel Centre at station

A trade union is urging people who are opposed to plans to significantly reduce the opening times for the Travel Centre at Berwick Railway Station to put forward their views before it is too late.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 15th September 2021, 11:13 am
Updated Wednesday, 15th September 2021, 11:14 am
Berwick Railway Station.
Berwick Railway Station.

LNER states on its website that the proposed changes at Berwick and other stations ‘reflect the reduced level of customer demand during these times’.

But a number of residents and local politicians have raised concerns about their impact if they go ahead, and now the TSSA (Transport Salaried Staff's Association) has spoken out against the plans.

TSSA senior organiser Jerry Wines said that it was important for concerned residents to contact Transport Focus before the Tuesday, September 21 deadline.

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He added: “At stations like Berwick, LNER is judging the service provided just on ticket sales, but it is not taking into account the crucial links its staff provide between the company and the local community.

“There will be large sections of the Berwick community, including those who have limited access and/or understanding of technology, who won’t be comfortable with using ticket machines or buying them online and so the travel centre is valuable to them.”

Speaking about the plans as a whole across the country, TSSA general secretary Manuel Cortes said: “Our members, who staff many of these travel centres, provide a vital function on the railway.

“We are concerned that the scale of these proposed changes is not only a scene setter for the real agenda – job cuts – but would come as a terrible blow to many smaller communities who are likely to be badly hit.

“LNER simply must think again and revise these wrong-headed and frankly unnecessary plans.”

The current Travel Centre opening hours at Berwick Railway Station are 5.45am to 6.30pm Monday to Friday, 6.45am to 3.15pm on Saturdays and 9.45am to 4.20pm on Sundays.

It is proposed to change them to 7am to noon Monday to Friday and 8am to 1pm on Saturdays and Sundays.

If you would like to provide feedback or comment about the proposed changes, either write a letter to Transport Focus, Freepost (RTEH-XAGE-BYKZ), PO Box 5594, Southend on Sea, SS1 9PZ, or email [email protected]