The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has responded to this afternoon’s news that Northern Rail’s franchise has been taken back under Government control:
Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) Regional Chair, Chris Manka, said: "The most important thing is vital rail services are quickly restored to our region as soon as possible. Small businesses and passengers have been forced to put up with a disgraceful level of service for far too long and this move will hopefully allow for a new opportunity to revitalise a much relied upon service that has completely gone off the rails.
“The future of Northern Rail must see a reliable network of trains with a coherent and workable timetable. Guarantees must be made so that these urgent improvements will finally come about after such a long period of pain for staff, employees and their customers who have had their livelihoods so seriously hampered.
“Greater Manchester’s roads are becoming increasingly choked with traffic during peak times of the day and part of the reason, I’m convinced, is down to the complete lack of faith people have in Northern’s woeful levels of service: leaky trains that are freezing cold, overcrowded, frequently late, many cancelled.
“Sadly, far too many people see the car as the only reliable way to get from A to B on a regular basis, and on time, and until public transport across GM sees massive investment, I can’t see that changing.”