16th September 2011
MP given assurance that rail tickets offices will not close
Gordon Henderson has been given an assurance from Southeastern that they have no intention of closing the ticket offices at any of their stations including those within Sittingbourne and Sheppey.
There was speculation that the ticket offices at Newington, Teynham, Sheerness and Queenborough would close after they are all mentioned in the McNulty Report, a study into saving money in the rail industry, which will shortly be reviewed by the Department for Transport.
Mike Gibson, Public Affairs Manager at Southeastern said,
“Southeastern has no proposals to close ticket offices at any of our stations. The number of offices we operate and their opening hours are hard wired into our franchise agreement as a contractual commitment and any change in the status quo requires the consent of the Department for Transport.”
Mr Henderson said,
“With the recent rail fare increases affecting commuters, I am sure my constituents would not have been happy with the prospect of being inconvenienced trying to purchase their tickets.
“Whilst I have received an assurance from Southeastern, I have written to Philip Hammond, Secretary of State for Transport, to urge him to consider keeping the ticket offices open once he has studied the McNulty report.”
“I understand that the report will feed into Government proposals to reform the rail industry to be published later in the year and so I will also continue to monitor the situation in Parliament.”