Grand Central suspends services between Sunderland, Hartlepool and London during second lockdown

Train services between Sunderland and Hartlepool and London are to be suspended until next month as a result of the second national coronavirus lockdown.

Operator Grand Central announced today, Tuesday, November 3, that it will suspend all services from the end of operations on Friday.

The second lockdown comes into effect on Thursday.

Grand Central Rail is suspending services until next month

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A company statement today said: “Following the recent Government announcement that England will enter an initial four-week period of lockdown, Grand Central has made the decision to temporarily suspend all its rail services from the end of service on Friday 6th November.

"Customers with tickets to travel between 7th November and 2nd December can claim a full refund or change their ticket to a later date. Tickets remain on sale for trains departing from 3rd December onwards.

“After careful weighing up of our options and following discussions with the Department for Transport and trade union representatives, it’s clear that the difficult but necessary measure of taking a short period of hibernation is our only course of action.

"We enjoyed tremendous support from our customers after resuming services following the first national lockdown, and we thank them for their patience once again.

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“Grand Central’s Open Access business model means, unlike most train operators, we rely exclusively on income from ticket sales, with no subsidy from Government. The new lockdown will bring an

inevitable fall in passenger numbers, meaning it is not possible to continue operating during this period.

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“With no trains in service some of our crew and associated staff will be supported by the Government furlough scheme during this period. Our staff continue to be a source of great pride to Grand Central thanks to their understanding, professionalism and commitment. We thank you.

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"Grand Central will be back soon, please continue to follow official advice on safe travel and social distancing.

“Keep up to date with Grand Central’s announcements by following us on Twitter at @GC_Rail or visiting www.grandcentralrail.com/updates.”

The firm has set up a dedicated web page to answer customer queries and information on refunds. Visit https://bit.ly/324OVEI

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