Simon Lightwood MP steps up campaign to save Wakefield Westgate ticket office
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Rail Delivery Group, who represent rail operators in the UK, announced that they are consulting on the closure of most station ticket offices in the UK.
The Rail Delivery Group initially opened the public consultation for just three weeks, however after pressure from MPs and campaign groups, the consultation was extended until September 1.
Around 200,000 people have taken part to date.
LNER have said that this closure is to “modernise” their ticket selling and customer service. Although this was met with concern by both unions and disability groups.
Although they assert that Wakefield Westgate station would still be staffed throughout the day, Mr Lightwood has argued that it is still uncertain what this will look like in practice and leaves ticketing and customer service for many passengers up in the air.
Mr Lightwood has already written to the Transport Secretary and LNER to seek further clarity on the plans.
As part of his campaign to ‘Save Wakefield’s Ticket Office’, Mr Lightwood is inviting people to visit his website and contribute their voice to the consultation process at www.simonlightwood.org.uk/ticket.
“LNER’s threats to close Wakefield Westgate ticket office shows that they clearly do not understand their value to people here in Wakefield,” Mr Lightwood said.
“Many passengers are not able to use online alternatives and far too often, ticket machines in stations aren’t as reliable as we want them to be. Ticket office staff don’t just sell tickets.
"They are also there to help elderly and disabled passengers with accessibility, assist passengers when their journey is disrupted and provide support for those feeling unsafe travelling at night.”
“We are still unclear as to what customer services will look like under this new system, which has left staff and passengers uncertain and anxious.
"That’s why I am encouraging everyone to visit my website and find out how you can make your voice heard.”