Grand Central North West route abandoned

Grand Central suspends all rail services during lockdown

Grand Central North West route abandoned
Grand Central’s No. 90029 with two of the Mk 4 rakes of stock and 90026 on the rear, pass Atherstone during a shake down run on June 26. Photo: Chris Milner

Following the Government announcement that England will enter an initial four-week period of lockdown, Grand Central has decided to suspend all its rail services from the end of service on Friday 6 November.

Customers with tickets to travel between November 7 and December 2 can claim a full refund or change their ticket to a later date. Tickets remain on sale for trains departing from December 3 onwards.

In a statement, Managing Director Richard McClean said: “After careful weighing-up of our options and following discussions with the Department for Transport and trade union representatives, it’s clear that the difficult but necessary measure of taking a short period of hibernation is our only course of action.

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“We enjoyed tremendous support from our customers after resuming services following the first national lockdown, and we thank them for their patience once again.

“Grand Central’s open-access business model means, unlike most train operators, we rely exclusively on income from ticket sales, with no subsidy from Government. The new lockdown will bring an inevitable fall in passenger numbers, meaning it is not possible to continue operating during this period.

“With no trains in service, some of our crew and associated staff will be supported by the Government furlough scheme during this period. Our staff continue to be a source of great pride to Grand Central, thanks to their understanding, professionalism and commitment. We thank you.

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“We also understand our passengers may have questions over refunds and cancelled services, and we have a dedicated web page to answer those queries and guide you to the relevant source of information.”

 For more information on cancelled services, click here.

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Sam Hewitt

Let off some steam...