Travel Update - Grand Central

Grand Central Service Update

Following the communication that we sent in April regarding the temporary suspension of Grand Central services until 31 May 2020, I wanted to update you on the current situation and the ongoing impact that COVID-19 is having on our business.

Being an Open Access train operator means that (unlike franchised operators), we need to sell enough tickets to cover our operating costs. The safety of our staff and passengers is essential, but social distancing rules means we can’t yet welcome the number of customers needed to run our service sustainably. This means that we will be extending our existing suspension of train services throughout June, but we remain committed to returning later in the summer.

This also means that following discussions with the trade unions, many of our team at Grand Central will remain on the Government’s furlough scheme until we resume services.

In addition to suspending our current services, we are also going to pause work for now on our forthcoming Blackpool to London service and the additional services we are planning for our North East route.

These are difficult decisions to make and have not been taken lightly. Our focus is on safeguarding the business for the future and ensuring Grand Central continues to be able to serve our customers.

I hope this update is of value and would appreciate if this could be shared with appropriate colleagues across your business as well as with your client partners to better manage travel arrangements and service enquiries during this challenging time.

Further information can be found on our website at

Richard McClean
Managing Director

Grand Central

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