Grand Central has joined Hull Trains in suspending services during the second lockdown, although it is delaying the action until after the end of service on Friday 6 November.
Managing director Richard McClean said: “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.
“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.
“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.”
Customers with tickets to travel between 7 November and 2 December can claim a full refund or change their ticket to a later date. Tickets remain on sale for trains departing from 3 December onwards.