Campaign for retention of direct services to the south side of Manchester
The current proposal is to route all services on the
Southport - Manchester lines to Victoria from December 2017.
Following the survey on 9th June at Wigan
Wallgate, the campaign groups fighting the withdrawal of a direct Piccadilly service have spoken with and counted
passengers at all stations from Southport to Westhoughton.
The bottom line: daily over 800 peak period commuters rely on the
threatened service as do hundreds more throughout the day!
A meeting between; the MPs for Southport, West
Lancs, Wigan and Makerfield; Rail North; the 3 local transport authorities;
Northern; and others is planned for July 1st.
We are seeking a positive outcome in which both services to Victoria and Piccadilly are retained and even improved. However, the indications
are that we will not get any commitment to amending the 2017 service plans before the meeting if at all.
can you do? Support the cause and your MP by e mailing (even if you
did so before) the people that will represent the rail company and authorities at the meeting on 1st July, and explain your situation;.
You can use or amend the following text if it
helps and applies to you:
I am one
of over 800 hundred that each day use the current Southport – Manchester Piccadilly
service to reach my place of work. My contribution to the Northern Powerhouse is
through working in the xx sector and I travel from [station] to [station].
From consultation with rail users like me, I trust you understand how important and essential it
is to retain this direct train service and when you meet my elected
representative shortly you will be in a position to assure them that the
announced rail plans will be amended in order that it is. If not please let me know.
Rail North Director, David Hoggarth, email@example.com
Amanda White Head of Rail TfGM, firstname.lastname@example.org
Wayne Menzies Head of Rail Merseytravel, email@example.com
Rob Warnes Northern Planning Director, Rob.Warnes@northernrail.org
Carolyn Watson Northern External Relations, firstname.lastname@example.org
Roger Cobbe Policy Director, email@example.com
Please send a copy to your MP and firstname.lastname@example.org. MP contact details:-
Lisa Nandy MP for Wigan: email@example.com
Fovargue MP for Makerfield: firstname.lastname@example.org
Cooper MP for West Lancs: email@example.com
MP for Southport: firstname.lastname@example.org
Who are we? The Ormskirk, Preston and Southport Travellers' Association - OPSTA - is the rail user group for West Lancashire's railways using the traditional boundaries described by Preston, Wigan and Liverpool.
We are a non political group that campaigns for the retention, improvement and development of the railway links between Liverpool and Preston via Ormskirk, and from Southport and Kirkby to Manchester via Wigan. We are members of the West of Lancashire Community Rail Partnership and the One West Lancs Transport group.
If you find that we share common aims
please join us or you can follow us here (last updated on 10th June) and on twitter @opsta15.
of Piccadilly/ Airport Services under the New Franchise -
Arriva Rail North
took over the Northern franchise from 1st April 2016 with a plan to divert
our Piccadilly and airport services to Manchester Victoria from December 2017.
In reply to passenger
objections and a body of evidence, Northern (the operational management) stated
they will look at timetables in detail and will consult but made no commitment
to modify the plan to retain the direct service to Piccadilly. The Chair of Rail North has committed
to hold the operator to its promise to conduct a review of plans he placed this
in a context of benefits that will result from the Ordsall Chord/ Northern Hub,
electrification and new franchise.
the third month of its franchise, Northern has said very little, possibly
because many passengers comprehensively deconstructed their initial response,
not least the suggestion that a change at Salford Crescent would be reasonable. and safe
Their position remains ‘it’s being looked at’ with no timeframe on when we will
Through platform surveys and counts at all stations the campaign has found that over 830 daily commuters will
be seriously and adversely affected by the loss of service. Furthermore,
while huge numbers need the service for work and education, further research supports passenger
feedback, that this is not just an issue for commuters in the morning and evening peaks but throughout the day.
contrast with the rail company and Rail North, any and all local authorities
and business groups, that the Go To Piccadilly (#gotopicc)
campaign group speaks to, immediately recognise the seriousness of
the issue and act on it.
NEXT PHASE OF THE CAMPAIGN
Ahead of the meeting proposed for 1st July with our local MPs, Rail North, Northern and our local transport authorities, we are again seeking rail user participation again in Making Our Voice Heard with a fresh emphasis on the economic impact.
To show your MP and the campaign has your support please raise your concerns and objection now while we continue to press for meaningful dialogue and
resolution. Use this link to see how you can make your voice heard - it is very
quick and easy. If you use Twitter please comment using #gotopicc and Campaign
for Better Transport's #railwoes. Or if Facebook is your social medium,
have a look at southportrailtransportforum.
lease contact us if you have any comments or queries.
Burscough Bridge Ticket Office
We now understand
that the ticket office will close on June 25th and although there is behind-the-scenes work to find a viable way of running it in the future, a solution has not been found
OPSTA will assist and
work constructively with all parties to get a staffed ticket office re-opened,
and if necessary, as looks increasingly likely, we will campaign on this issue
With Northern promising to
increase the number of staffed stations under the new franchise could they
provide some financial support here?
It was a pleasant
surprise to read that Arriva Rail North intends to run 17 services daily on
Ormskirk – Preston from December 17, up from the present 13 and above the
14 specified in the tender. It looks like someone may have taken notice of the
evidence based case we presented and if they are serious about getting it
right, they will be clear from our surveys this means running 2 units in the
Rail users can assist
by emailing their observations and experiences to email@example.com.