Consultation extended on controversial Solihull rail ticket office closure proposals - The Solihull Observer

Consultation extended on controversial Solihull rail ticket office closure proposals

Solihull Editorial 26th Jul, 2023   0

RAIL USERS in Solihull will now have until September 1 to have their say on proposals to close ticket offices after the consultation was extended.

The proposals would see the ticket offices at the Solihull, Acocks Green, Widney Manor and Shirley stations be among those to close.

The consultation on the proposed reforms was due to run until today (July 26).

Under the plans, all ticket offices in their current form would close over the next three years, apart from several ‘hub stations’, such as Worcester Foregate Street, Birmingham Snow Hill, Sutton Coldfield, University and Wolverhampton.

Independent watchdog Transport Focus and London TravelWatch have received more than 170,000 comments on the proposals so far.

The plans have faced backlash from some residents, particularly the elderly and vulnerable.

Plans would see staff fill ambassador roles, give advice about rail fares and support customers with accessibility needs.

West Midlands Railway, Avanti West Coast and Chiltern Railways said there would be a ‘visible and accessible staff presence’ on ticket concourses and platforms during staff hours.

The firm added just 12 per cent of all tickets were currently sold at offices, compared to 82 per cent in the 1990s and around half of all sales nationally were now made online.

Transport Focus’s chief executive Anthony Smith said: “Feedback is currently being logged and reviewed alongside individual train operator proposals.

“It is important that a diverse range of views from all parts of the community are heard in this consultation.

“New comments received will be read, considered and used in discussions with train companies in the coming weeks.”

Visit to take part in the consultation.

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