'Bolton commuter trains are worse than cattle trucks'
Liz Davies’ pictures at Blackrod on the 8.11am service to Manchester Victoria. She said: “Five 5 more stops to Manchester . . . five more loads of people to get on. Health and safety out the window.”
A COMMUTER has branded her daily journey into work as “worse than being stuck in a cattle shed”.
Liz Davies, an IT trainer, travels between her home in Blackrod and her job in Manchester city centre, and fears the packed carriages are unsafe and dangerous.
The 34-year-old, of The Cheethams, Blackrod, said: “This is not a recent problem, it has been like this for the past six years. Everyday people are left on platforms because they cannot get on the train.
“The other day I was forced to spend the whole 35-minute journey in a spot near the door of the train that ironically had a sign saying ‘do not stand here’ — I think cattle in a shed would have more space. It can’t be safe.”
Ms Davies, who travels on the 8.11am Northern Rail service from Blackrod to Manchester, said she has witnessed desperate train operators directing passengers to travel in the bathroom.
She added: “One time I saw a conductor telling three people to squeeze into the bathroom.”
Ms Davies sent photographs of her cramped journeys to The Bolton News in response to our Let’s Get Back On Track campaign, which has been backed by the town’s three MPs and is calling for a dramatic improvement to Bolton’s rail services.
Bolton North East MP David Crausby has asked if more rolling stock could be added to the Bolton line.
However, Northern Rail’s managing director Alex Hynes said there were no spare diesel trains in the UK.
He added: “For us to provide additional capacity on the Bolton corridor, train carriages would have to be removed from services on other, also busy Northern routes — in simplest terms robbing Peter to pay Paul.
“We know overcrowding continues to be a concern for passengers travelling through Bolton and we are working hard to address this — the safety of our passengers and employees is Northern’s highest priority and we continue to monitor the situation.”
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