Town Councillors say rail ticket office proposals are a step backwards


They are urging people to have their say before the consultation closes on Wednesday

The consultation over train ticket office closures finishes tomorrow and Banbury Town Councillors have submitted a letter of objection to the proposals.

They say the move to close ticket offices and bring staff to front of house roles would be a step backwards which would effectively leave many in the community behind a new barrier.

A joint letter by Town Mayor Fiaz Ahmed and the Leader of the Council Kieron Mallon voices their concerns for the needs of Banbury residents, particularly the disabled, the elderly and passengers lacking rail confidence.   It also highlights the issues the proposals would create for those without a computer or smartphone and people who still only use cash.

Councillors Ahmed and Mallon highlighted the array of services provided by ticket office staff, over and above simply selling tickets.   They said: “Ticket offices don’t just sell tickets. Ticket office staff offer expert assistance in journey planning and finding the best and most economical train routes for passengers. 

“Ticket office staff can ensure the appropriate concession is applied to ticket purchases, make sure the public have the correct ticket, let them know when facilities like lifts are out of use, advise on any changes to journeys that may be required, and provide or arrange for sighted guidance to navigate through the station and safely on to the train.”

They are urging local people to have their say in the consultation before tomorrow’s deadline.   Comments can be emailed to   Written submissions can be sent without a stamp to FREEPOST RTEH-XAGE-BYKZ, Transport Focus, PO Box 5594, Southend on Sea SS1 9PZ.

Councillors Ahmed and Mallon concluded their submission saying: “Closing ticket offices would be a step backwards at a time when the railway network needs to leap forward in accessibility.

“Poor station design, faulty announcements, inadequate signage, and inconsistent paving already make rail travel challenging for the elderly and disabled, including blind and partially sighted people. Losing ticket office staff will worsen all those problems.

“In this attempt to ‘bring staff out from behind the glass,’ in truth you would leave many in our community behind a new barrier.”

Published: by Banbury FM Newsteam

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