Hull Trains suspends services amid coronavirus uncertainty

Louise Cheeseman

Hull Trains is temporarily suspending all train services from today (30 March) due to continued uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus crisis.

Passengers with tickets for Hull Trains will be able to travel on alternative train services on the same date and route specified on the ticket.

Arrangements have been made to make sure that tickets will be accepted by other train operators, the train operator said.

Despite running a revised timetable, numbers of people travelling have dropped significantly since national guidance was issued for people to stay at home and stop all non-essential travel.

Revenues from ticket sales are vital for Hull Trains and its business model means it must survive purely as a commercial operation.

As one of three open access operators in the country, it has not been offered additional financial support from the government, which franchised rail operators have.

“We have explored every avenue to try and keep trains running but sadly it is not currently financially viable to run our services. We play a vital role in the regional economy, as recognized by our local MPs, and we fully intend to resume operations as soon as we can,” said MD Louise Cheeseman.

“It’s been a very difficult week for the business but the reluctant decision to temporarily suspend services is the right one based on the current unprecedented circumstances and I hope our passengers understand this.

“The move protects the long-term future of Hull Trains and our people’s jobs which is important as it will allow us to reinstate operations quickly when possible.

“We will continue to review the dynamic situation as it unfolds and we plan to return as a resilient train operator for the city of Hull and East Riding as soon as we can.”