Closing rail ticket offices won't work for passengers - Yorkshire Post Letters

From: G Marsden, Heanor, Derby.

In reference to Mr Shapps’s brilliant idea to close ticket offices on the railways. I use the railway at every convenient occasion from a station without

a ticket office, or a ticket machine.

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Picture: PA.Picture: PA.
Picture: PA.

Hence, I pay online, or if there is a conductor on the train all the better.

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Now, I will relay an experience I had to get tickets to Luton Airport.

I went online, sorted the times and costs and paid with my debit card. I live in Heanor, and the nearest and most convenient ticket machine is in Ilkeston, however I had reason to be in Belper where there is a ticket machine, so I went there only to find the vandal had got there before me.

So, I went off to Ilkeston. I did the necessary on the screen and entered my debit card and the machine decided it did not like my card.

I tried again and got the same result.

Now what do I do?

Well, the only redress was to travel to Alfreton to the ticket office, on arrival it was closed. There was a passenger waiting and from our conversation

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I was informed it was only temporary and the lady would be back shortly; so, I waited.

After a while the lady came in and I gave her the necessary forms, gave her my debit card which was accepted in her machine, and I got my tickets. That is not the end of the saga. Owing to circumstances my partner had to change her flight time and date.

My train tickets were now obsolete. I returned to the ticket office and explained my dilemma and the ticket person accepted my problem and changed the tickets to suit the changed arrangements albeit costing me extra for the difference in train fares and times.

Imagine what the outcome would be if the ticket offices are shut.

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The vandal will deny any tickets being issued; the inefficient machine refuses to read debit cards, and if as in my circumstance travel days need to be changed; then what?

At the age of 77, I have no intention of having a smartphone and cannot and will not deal with all the technical bumph required.

These Ministers have some brilliant ideas, yet as it is said, they are all brains: and no common sense.