Northern ready to welcome commuters back to railway
Northern is preparing for the return of commuters as 78 percent* of rail users in the North say they will be turning to trains when pandemic restrictions are fully lifted.
To help welcome customers back to the railway, Northern is continuing improvement work across its network, with enhancements made to trains, stations and ways of buying tickets.
In the past 12 months alone the train operator has introduced its fleet of new trains, completed the refurbishment of its older trains and delivered millions of pounds worth of improvements at stations, including the installation of more than 600 ticket machines and improved accessibility features.
Mark Powles, Customer and Commercial Director at Northern, said: “Our customers are at the heart of everything we do, and we’ve used the past year to deliver a much-improved network for them to return to.
“Research has shown almost 80 percent* of people are expecting to return to offices when restrictions are lifted and those who use our services to get to work will undoubtedly notice some significant enhancements.”
Northern is also taking extra care to ensure its trains and stations are as clean as possible for its customers.
More than 600 dedicated cleaning staff are working on trains and at stations with a particular focus on touch points (tables, buttons and toilets). And, of course, face coverings are mandatory (aside from those with specific exemptions) on all trains and at stations.
Mark added: “We know cleanliness, now more than ever, is vitally important for our customers. We’ve invested in more cleaning staff than ever before and our enhanced cleaning regime is designed to protect customers and staff by reducing the potential risk of transmission.
“Our message to our customers is clear. Whether you are returning to rail for the first time, have travelled with us recently but are returning to a commute, or are a key worker who has travelled with us consistently during the pandemic, you can travel with Northern with confidence.”
Northern is fully focussed on helping customers return to work and return to the railway and has delivered improvements across the board to make commutes to the workplace better than ever.
Northern’s customers can enjoy:
- Improved trains – the entire fleet is now brand-new or fully refurbished
- Better stations – millions of pounds have been spent on improving Northern’s stations and making many more accessible
- Great value tickets - From day tickets to season tickets, you've a great deal of choice when it comes to commuting by rail
- Flexi season tickets – on sale from Monday 21 June
- More ways to buy tickets – more than 600 new ticket vending machines and improvements to web and app purchasing
For more details on the improvements made, tickets on offer and help available to those returning to the workplace, visit the Northern website – northernrailway.co.uk/returntowork.
Notes to editors
* Research conducted February 2021 amongst a panel of 1556 people in employment across Northern’s footprint who currently work from home having travelled to a workplace pre-pandemic.