Schoolchildren stranded by train service in Barrow
Last updated at 09:31, Monday, 14 October 2013
ANGRY parents have criticised a train company for failing to improve, after leaving 22 Barrow schoolchildren stranded.
There was chaos and confusion at Roose station yesterday morning when pupils travelling to Dowdales School and Ulverston Victoria High School were denied access to the single carriage 8:04am Northern Rail service because it was too full.
Instead, the students were told to board a coach waiting at the other side of Flass Lane, sparking safety concerns as children crossed the busy road unsupervised at a peak travel time.
While all the students were able to catch the replacement bus service, this was not the case last week when 22 children who had been turned away from the train were stranded because they were also unable to board the coach.
Barrow Borough Councillor Ray Guselli, who had been told by Northern Rail that yesterday’s train would have two carriages in order to accommodate the demand, labelled the company “irresponsible”.
He added: “It’s annoying that this has happened on more than one occasion and they’ve told us it’s been resolved on more than one occasion. Their guarantees are meaningless at the moment.
“My concern is that as we get into the winter when the roads ice up, coaches won’t be able to travel. It requires two train carriages, guaranteed every day.”
Janene Price, of Roose Road, whose daughter Nicole is in Year Eight at Ulverston Victoria High School said: “I’m not happy. Officially, this is the second time this has happened but there’s been numerous times when I’ve had to get friends and relatives to take her in their car.
“I just want to be reassured that my daughter and all the other children will be able to get on the train safely.
“We’re paying for that service and it costs about £180 a year.”
John Richardson, deputy headteacher at Dowdales School said: “We’ve been made aware by parents and Councillor Guselli that there is a problem with the train service.
“It’s vital that the children get to school on time and safely and we will continue to work with parents to find a solution.”
A Northern Rail spokeswoman said: “We’d like to say sorry to our customers on the Cumbrian Coast who have had a less than satisfactory journey with us recently during the morning peak. This is due to a lack of carriages being available. We know this simply isn’t good enough and are working hard to get things back on track.
“We continue to liaise directly with the schools involved and have already increased capacity on additional buses which are being brought in to support these peak services.”
First published at 09:20, Monday, 14 October 2013
Published by http://www.nwemail.co.uk
Have your say
Wayne,Our son also catches the 08:04 train, and it is definitely a Northern Rail service, not Transpennine Express.
Please get this in context. The chances of a coach not be able to drive through because of ice are to say the least slim to none. The same could be said about trains not making it through. Children crossing busy Flass Lane is hardly an issue either. How did they arrive at the station in the first place??
The train company do not have 'spare' coaches just sitting in siding waiting to be used on a school run service during term time. They have already provided a bus replacement service which I suspect they don't legally have to provide.
I also suspect that fewer pupils will make the journey in coming years as confidence in Furness Academy improves. GCSE results this year already showed significant improvement. In fact a bigger improvement I think than any other local school
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