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New measures introduced on Northern network

As Northern continues to respond to the coronavirus outbreaks, a number of new measures have been introduced today (Thursday) to help protect passengers and staff.

Until further notice all waiting rooms at Northern stations will be closed. This follows advice from government and is in-line with action taken by train operators across the country. In the event of bad weather Northern will review situation and may look to re-open waiting areas if appropriate.

All gatelines at stations managed by Northern are now fully open, meaning passengers do not have to pass paper or season tickets through the barriers or present them to staff. Northern has also suspended the issuing of penalty fares until further notice.

Customers will still require a ticket to travel and should buy before they board from stations, ticket machines, and online via the web (www.northernrailway.co.uk) or Northern’s mobile app. Northern is only accepting card payments at the moment – cash payments can only be made at a small number of ticket machines.

Mark Powles, Commercial and Customer Director at Northern, said: “Our trains and stations remain open for business to help key workers get where they need to be across the north of England.

“For those who have to make essential journeys – and for our staff who continue to work across the network – we want to make the railway as safe as possible.

“The measure we have introduced today further limit person-to-person contact and help staff and passengers follow the advice from government on social distancing.

“Though we have closed waiting rooms and opened gatelines, our ticket offices remain open to provide help and advice to passengers. We will, however, only accept payment via card (chip and pin or contactless). Customers who want to pay by cash will be asked to use ticket machines if they are available.”

Mark added: “These are unprecedented times for the rail industry and everyone at Northern would like to thank our customers for their continued patience and understanding as we continue to work to keep the region’s key workers on the move.”

Northern continues to operate an amended timetable for key workers and essential travel only – the majority of people are asked to follow government guidance and stay at home.

Northern is the second largest train operator in the UK, employing more than 6,000 people, and running regional and commuter services across the north of England.

The operator has begun to oversee the removal of Pacer trains and the first 75 of 101 brand new trains, part of a £500 million investment in regional rail, have been introduced.

Other improvements on the Northern network include:

  • more than 2,000 extra services each week, with around 400 additional Sunday services, including new direct journeys from Bradford to Wakefield, Sheffield, Nottingham, Liverpool and Hull; from Leeds to Chester and Bridlington; from Lincoln to Leeds; and from Manchester Airport to Warrington, Bradford and Halifax
  • a nearly 40% increase in capacity - creating space for 31,000 extra customers travelling into the five major commuter cities (Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds, Sheffield and Newcastle) of the north during the morning rush-hour
  • improved ticketing, including mobile and print-at-home tickets, and discounted fares for jobseekers.

To find out more about the work we are doing to improve our network please click here.

Northern provides 2,800 local and regional train services every day across the north of England, serving a population of nearly 15 million. There are now 108 million passenger journeys made on our network each year.

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