Rail operator Northern is advising its passengers not to travel today on the Cumbrian Coast due to the impact of coronavirus affecting staff.
A number of front-line staff have tested positive over the past few days, and other staff have also been told to self-isolate as a result. Most of these staff are based in Barrow-in-Furness and Workington.
The effect of this means that all services on the Cumbrian Coast Line are cancelled today (3rd July).
On Saturday the 3rd of July 2021 there are planned cancellations to services on the Cumbrian Coast line, also between Barrow and Manchester Airport and many services will be removed for Lancaster and Morecambe.
Chris Jackson, Regional Director at Northern, said: “We were already expecting this weekend to be difficult because of the impact of coronavirus, but the number of staff affected in Cumbria has risen significantly and we’ve had to take the difficult decision to cancel all services on the Cumbrian Coast line on Saturday.
“This is not a decision we have taken lightly and, in doing so, we’ve had to balance the demand for services with our realistic ability to provide a reliable and punctual service for our customers.
“At the moment we expect services to return on Sunday, albeit with a risk of short notice cancellations, but our message for Saturday is ‘do not travel’.”
“A high proportion of staff based at Barrow and Workington have been instructed to self-isolate. This has exacerbated issues we were already experiencing in the region following an increase in the number of employees who have either tested positive for COVID-19 or have had to enter a period of self-isolation.
“Many of these colleagues are drivers and conductors and, as such, we are left with no option but to cancel some services this week in Cumbria and North Lancashire.
“We are doing all we can to provide the best possible service for customers in extremely difficult circumstances and, where we are not able to run rail services, we will have replacement buses on standby to get our customers where they need to be.”
Northern is also warning customers that services to larger towns and cities are likely to be busier than usual on Saturday night, 3rd July 2021.
This is due to the Euro 2020 England vs Ukraine quarter-final. The rail operator advises those planning to travel on Saturday night to plan journeys carefully and not to wait for the last train home.
Chris added: “Of course, many people will want to support England and will be travelling to pubs and bars to watch the match.
“With kick off at 8pm, that only leaves a handful of trains on our key routes after the match to get people home and we’re asking our customers to plan ahead and to use all available services. We’ll have buses on standby in many places to assist, but customers can help by staggering their journeys and not all waiting for the last train home.”
Up-to-date details of Northern’s services are available via the rail operators journey planner.
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