Save our travel centres

LNER is currently undertaking a public consultation on changes which would reduce travel centre opening hours across the network and result in a significant reduction to the service offered to the community by smaller stations like Berwick, Retford, and Newark.

TSSA is calling on the Company to think again, as it’s simply not the time to make cuts when we should be doing all we can to encourage people back onto our railways. Judging a travel centre’s value to the business purely based on ticket sales diminishes the vital role our member's play in providing access to the railways for sections of the community that are not comfortable with, or able to use, the technology and alternative solutions the Company says are available. 

Equality of access to the railways is essential to delivering a quality service and LNER has a lot to say about this on their website. However, decimating travel centre opening hours and closing some completely in the afternoon and evening is hardly conducive to claims that they "embrace the communities that we operate in", "are committed to providing easy and convenient access to our service for all customers", and "we work to make sure that nothing we do makes a person's disability a barrier to using our services". In no way do the Company's proposals live up to these claims.

Travel centre staff are understandably concerned about the impact of the proposals on jobs, and yet the Company has yet to formally discuss the implications with us. It’s irresponsible to publicise the proposals without considering and discussing the impact on staff with the recognised trade unions. We don’t accept being presented with a "fait accompli" is a legitimate way to conduct meaningful consultation, and this is just another example of the sort of behaviour by the Company that has resulted in travel centre staff feeling unappreciated and demoralised.

We are therefore calling on the Company to meaningfully consult with us on the proposals and their consequences before any decision is taken on reducing opening hours. Travel centres play a vital role in providing a quality service and connecting the Company to the communities it serves, and it’s about time LNER recognised that.

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