May 18, 2024

Consultation begins over plans to close train ticket offices

LNER has confirmed it is looking to close ticket offices at many of its stations in line with wider plans announced today across the entire UK rail network.

Train operators are planning to close hundreds of station ticket offices across England over the next three years.

A 21-day public consultation has been launched to collect passengers’ views, with concerns already expressed by unions and disability groups.

“The way our customers buy tickets has changed and it’s time for the railway to change with them,” said Jacqueline Starr, Chief Executive of the Rail Delivery Group (RDG).

“With just 12% of tickets being sold from ticket offices last year, and 99% of those transactions being available on vending machines or online, our proposals would mean more staff on hand on to give face to face help with a much wider range of support, from journey planning, to finding the right ticket and helping those with accessibility needs.”

LNER said 87% of its tickets now purchased online, with only 6% purchased at ticket offices and 7% through ticket vending machines.

LNER’s plans include the retention of ticket offices at Edinburgh Waverley, Newcastle, York, Doncaster, Peterborough and London King’s Cross, which will continue to offer the same range of products and opening times. 

David Horne, Managing Director at LNER, said: “Our customers’ habits have changed, and we must plan for the needs of our future customers. We want everyone to enjoy an even better experience when travelling with LNER.

“Our proposals for each of our stations will bring our people closer to our customers, improve accessibility and make good use of the hand-held technology and digital systems that we have pioneered in the rail industry.

“I would encourage people to share their views on our proposals as part of the public consultation.”