Greater Anglia begins reopening ticket offices as train services increase

Stowmarket railway station Picture: MARK LANGFORD

Stowmarket railway station Picture: MARK LANGFORD - Credit: Archant

Ticket offices at 26 Greater Anglia stations are due to reopen for limited hours after being closed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The 26 offices – located across the franchise’s network – will all reopen for the morning peak period, while busier stations will also be open for evening peak hours.

In Suffolk, Stowmarket’s ticket office will reopen from the week beginning on Sunday, May 24, joining the already open Ipswich and Bury St Edmunds.

Meanwhile in north Essex, Braintree, Ingatestone, Kelvedon, Manningtree, Stansted Mountfitchet and Wivenhoe will also reopen for customers.

Greater Anglia has however urged passengers to follow government advice, in that public transport journeys should only be made when essential.

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The rail operator has also advised passengers to wear a face covering.

In addition to following government guidelines, Greater Anglia has put a range of measures in place to help staff and customers maintain social distancing, while train services have been increased.

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Those wishing to travel have been asked to buy via their mobile phone using the Greater Anglia app, while those who require buying tickets from a machine or ticket office are asked to use contactless payment. Martin Moran, Greater Anglia commercial and customer service director, said: “Government advice remains to avoid public transport. We want to keep our railway safe for essential travel, such as journeys made by key workers.

“Last week we increased our train service by introducing a new revised timetable. As we expect a slight increase in passenger numbers over the weeks ahead, we’ve also decided to re-open these ticket offices to reduce queues for ticket machines, for people who cannot buy their tickets online or by using the Greater Anglia app.

“However, the opening hours will remain under review and we shall be monitoring ticket sales at the reopened ticket offices, in case it’s necessary to make further changes.”

Ticket offices at Colchester Town, Frinton and Hatfield Peverel will remain closed. Ticket offices at 26 Greater Anglia stations are due to reopen for limited hours from the week beginning Sunday 24 May, after being temporarily closed over the last five weeks.

Ticket offices due to re-open are Audley End, Braintree, Brimsdown, Diss, Enfield Lock, Hertford East, Hockley, Ingatestone, Kelvedon, Manningtree, March, Prittlewell, Rayleigh, Rochford, Rye House, St Margarets, Sawbridgeworth, South Woodham Ferrers, Stansted Mountfitchet, Stowmarket, Thetford, Waltham Cross, Ware, Whittlesford Parkway, Wickford and Wivenhoe.

All will open for the morning peak period and the busier ones additionally for the evening peak.

According to Government advice, people should not use public transport unless their journey is essential and if they do travel they are advised to use a face covering.

Greater Anglia has put in a range of measures to help staff and customers maintain social distancing at stations, and also increased the train service so there are longer and more frequent trains so people can spread out their journeys.

Wherever possible passengers should buy their tickets online or using the Greater Anglia app in order to cut down on time spent at the station, so it is easier for everyone to maintain social distancing.

Customers using the ticket office or ticket machines at the station are asked to use contactless payment.

Ticket offices at the following stations remain closed: Burnham-on-Crouch, Colchester Town, Elsenham, Frinton, Harlow Mill, Hatfield Peverel, Newport, Shelford, but from Sunday 24 May, the following ticket offices will be open:

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