Letter: First Buses and Northern Rail are failing us

This letter sent to the Star was written by Paul England, Hope Valley

Friday, 20th December 2019, 6:54 am
Northern Rail train

As a regular user of public transport, in my opinion, opting out of your car onto buses and trains is not the answer at the moment.

Two of the main serving companies, First Buses and Northern Rail are failing us in not delivering a reliable and punctual service. Northern Rail is probably the worst offender of the two.

Both trains and buses with these two firms unceremoniously offload their customers when they break down and they then have to make their own travel arrangements to get to their destinations.

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People using the buses frequently have to put up with non-arriving services and waiting at stops a long time, buses without heating that break down regularly. Not nice for everyone, especially trying to get back home after a long day at work.

Getting home on the 271 and 272 routes to the Hope Valley is now a worrying situation, buses not turning up and breaking down all too familiar. The 16.40 going out to Castleton on weekdays has proved elusive, not turning up or often breaking down.

Northern Rail for some reason just cannot get their act together, as has been the case now for a long time. The number of trains being cancelled has reached shocking levels, trains are delayed frequently.

Being in Sheffield Midland Station on Tuesday, November 26, between 7 and 7.45pm, two cancelled and at least eight delayed services occurred, yes, in that short space of time. The weather that day was perfectly okay.

That rate of cancelled and delayed services is typical most of the time on Northern. In particular, the Manchester service to and from Sheffield and more especially the route from Sheffield to Hull going to Bridlington has suffered, with numerous cancellations, Northern claiming not enough drivers or drivers not turning up to take the trains out.

There appears to be too much traffic on the rail network and they don’t look as if they can cope resulting in all these cancellations and delays.

There is a lot of advertising asking commuters for their feedback re train and bus services. I would suggest neither of the two companies mentioned listen to what people have to say.

I would say to First Buses and Northern Rail, people are forking out hard-earned cash to pay for weekly and monthly bus and train passes and season tickets, money they have to work hard for.

Please, could these two companies try and get their act together and stop disrupting commuters’ lives like they are?