Let's Get Back on Track: Commuters back our campaign to reinstate axed train services
BOLTON’S struggling commuters have pledged their support to The Bolton News’ Let’s Get Back on Track campaign as we urge train bosses to reconsider their decision to reduce services and axe peak time carriages in Bolton.
We spoke to commuters heading in and out of Bolton train station during the morning rush hour, many of whom were keen to sign our petition as they brace themselves for tougher journeys from next week.
First TransPennine Exp-ress (FTPE) has announced that from Sunday onwards, there will be one fewer service travelling through Bolton every hour and that a busy morning commuter train will have its carriages reduced from six to three.
The changes come as FTPE look to take advantage of the newly electrified line by directing trains on the Manchester to Scotland line via Wigan instead of Bolton.
The company said: “To take advantage of the newly electrified railway, the majority of services operating between Manchester, Cumbria and Scotland will be re-routed and will cease to call at Bolton and Chorley. That means if you do travel from Bolton or Chorley we advise you to check your train times before you set off.”
Commuter Gail Blackburn said she is worried about becoming a “figure of hate” when she tries to take her bike on the reduced service.
She said: “I regularly use the service from Blackrod station to Salford Crescent, taking my bike with me as I've got a couple of miles to travel at each end. It's already uncomfortable but I think that I am going to be hated in the coming months with my trusty steed — what to do, though? I have to get to work just like anyone else.”
Rail user Mark Thornley said he has “too many hellish train experiences to contemplate”, adding: “Tod-ay I had to miss two trains and on the one I got on I was so jammed in that to even try and lower my arms beneath my waist may have resulted in charges being pressed.”
When Kevin Richardson, from Warrington, saw our petition he wanted to sign it immediately, adding: “It is already really bad, so yes I will support the campaign.”
Yesterday, Bolton’s three MP’s, Julie Hilling, Yasmin Qureshi and David Crausby, all gave our campaign their full backing, along with Bolton’s political leaders.
To support our Let’s Get Back On Track campaign, simply sign the petition which is in our town centre office.
Alternatively, you can download your own petition (Let's Get Back on Track petition.pdf) and collect signatures, or you can sign online.
Return petitions to Let’s Get Back On Track, Editorial Department, The Bolton News, The Wellsprings, Civic Centre, Bolton, BL1 1AR.
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