Government confirms u-turn on plans to close railway ticket offices including in Grantham
A proposal to close around 1,000 ticket offices across the country has been scrapped.
Plans to close hundreds of railway station ticket offices in England will not be going ahead after a consultation on the proposals had 750,000 responses.
Transport secretary, the Rt Hon Mark Harper MP, has confirmed that the Government had “asked train operators to withdraw their proposals”.
LNER put its proposal to close the ticket office at Grantham railway station out to consultation in July.
Councillor Rhea Rayside, cabinet member for people and communities at South Kesteven District Council, wrote to Mr Harper back in August to raise concerns over the proposals to close the ticket offices at stations in Grantham and Stamford.
Passenger watchdog Transport Focus noted its objection to all the proposals to close the ticket offices, while the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) slammed the plans.
Councillor Richard Davies, Lincolnshire County Council’s executive member for transport said: “It’s very good news to see that common sense has prevailed and ticket offices will remain open.
“Across Lincolnshire we were facing the possibility of all ticket offices outside of Lincoln city, being closed. Now, thanks to the huge amount of public feedback, the Govt can be sure that stopping this from happening is exactly what train users in our county want.”
Mr Harper, said: “The consultation on ticket offices has now ended, with the Government making clear to the rail industry throughout the process that any resulting proposals must meet a high threshold of serving passengers.
“We have engaged with accessibility groups throughout this process and listened carefully to passengers as well as my colleagues in Parliament.
“The proposals that have resulted from this process do not meet the high thresholds set by ministers, and so the government has asked train operators to withdraw their proposals.
“We will continue our work to reform our railways with the expansion of contactless Pay As You Go ticketing, making stations more accessible through our Access for All programme and £350 million funding through our Network North plan to improve accessibility at up to 100 stations.”