South Gloucestershire Labour is celebrating the U-turn on plans to close up to 1,000 railway station ticket offices across the country, including Bristol Parkway and Filton Abbey Wood.

The Labour Group supported a motion at July’s Council meeting, condemning the closures.

Rail bosses wanted to close the offices to save money, but the BBC reported that there’ve been hundreds of thousands of objections from stakeholders.

Train companies have now been asked to scrap the proposals entirely.

The Labour Group considered various things in its opposition to the closures, including:

  • The problems caused for those who cannot book their tickets online
  • The issues that arise if ticket machines are broken
  • The specific help that can be required for people with disabilities or additional needs
  • The safety of women and girls travelling alone
  • The general level of assistance available for people with questions about their journeys
  • Possible job losses that might be caused by the closures

Deputy Group Leader Leigh Ingham said: “Thank goodness common sense has prevailed.

“No one wanted railway ticket offices to close. They provide a vital service and can make travelling so much easier and less stressful.

“They also provide help for people with specific needs, for example those who’d struggle to purchase their tickets online, or people with disabilities.

“There was an attempt to sneak this through on the quiet through an initial three-week consultation, but things kicked off so much there was no choice but to extend it to twelve weeks, and now the plan’s been scrapped altogether.”

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