Updated: Monday, 19th August 2019 @ 10:17am

Rail passengers ‘crammed in like sardines’ on peak Manchester train as carriages halved for third day running

Rail passengers ‘crammed in like sardines’ on peak Manchester train as carriages halved for third day running

| By Kenny Lomas

Passengers were ‘crammed in like sardines’ on a peak Manchester train service after its carriages were cut from six to three for the third day running.

The busy service, operated by First Transpennine Express, runs from Liverpool Lime Street through to Scarborough, calling at Warrington and Manchester.

The service usually operates a six-carriage service, but from Friday, June 6 and all this week the service has been cut in half with no explanation given.

Passengers were quick to voice their frustrations at the service.

Gwen Mitchell, 43, an accountant from Liverpool, said:  “It’s not very good is it? It’s frustrating. The annoying thing is they don’t even offer an explanation. We didn’t get an apology neither.

“I pay £1,100 a year for my rail pass. That’s a lot of money to have to stand crammed in like this on my morning commute.”

Paul Carter, 34, a construction worker from Warrington, said: “It’s disgusting. It costs me a fortune and I have to get crammed in like a sardine with no explanation whatsoever.”

A First Transpennine Express spokesman said the issue is ‘a very short term problem’.

"We currently have a fleet of 70 trains to operate over 330 services a day across the north of England and into Scotland,” the spokesman said.

“To meet customer demand and expectation we deploy all our available fleet throughout the day and have recently increased capacity by introducing 90,000 extra seats a week.

"Like other vehicles our train fleet can be subject to incidents outside of our control and recently we have experienced an unusual level of such.

"Rather than cancel trains we are therefore having to operate some services with less carriages than normal. Our maintenance teams are working as hard as possible to return the available fleet to its normal levels.

“A normal train service is expected to be in operation in the very near future."

Image courtesy of Ingy The Wingy, with thanks.