Rail operator reduces services during second lockdown
Following on from the announcement that the Government is to place England into national restrictions again, Merseyrail has announced changes to its timetables.
Due to the impact of COVID-19 and the subsequent restrictions announced to run from November 5, to December 2, at the earliest, from Monday, November 9, services between Liverpool Central and Southport will be operating at a 30-minute frequency Monday to Sunday.
These will be running as six-car trains where possible to maintain capacity on the Southport line.
Services on the line will continue to start and terminate at Liverpool Central, with services on the Ormskirk line starting and terminating at Hunts Cross.
Anyone wishing to travel between Southport and Hunts Cross should change at Liverpool Central.
The timetable across the rest of the Merseyrail network continues to operate as follows:
- Ormskirk and Kirkby lines – every 30 minutes Monday to Sunday
- Hunts Cross line – every 30 minutes Monday to Sunday
- Chester and Ellesmere Port lines – every 30 minutes Monday to Sunday (15-minute service between Hooton and Liverpool)
- West Kirby and New Brighton lines – every 30 minutes Monday to Sunday (15-minute service between Birkenhead North and Liverpool)
Passengers are reminded that from November 5, government-issued travel advice is that journeys can be made for a number of reasons including:
- Travelling to work where this cannot be done from home
- Travelling to education and for caring responsibilities
- Attending hospital, GP, and other medical appointments or visits where you have had an accident or are concerned about your health
- Visiting venues that are open, including essential retail
- Exercise, if you need to make a short journey to do so
The rail operator said passengers who do need to travel can do so with confidence by planning ahead, avoiding busy times and routes on public transport, as well as wearing a face covering while travelling, unless exempt.
Merseyrail managing director, Andy Heath, said: “As a result of the upcoming national restrictions and the impact of COVID-19, we have made the difficult decision to amend our timetables.
“By making this change we are able to operate a safe, reliable and efficient service for those that absolutely need to use our trains.
“I urge all of our customers to continue to follow government travel advice when travelling with us, such as wearing a face covering at all times unless exempt, travelling at quieter times where possible and maintaining social distancing where you can.”