One in four trains between Wigan villages and Manchester cancelled

One in four morning rush hour trains between Wigan villages and Manchester was axed last month, new figures reveal.
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Northern was scheduled to run 104 Southport to Manchester services between 7.43am and 9.03am: a service which includes stops at Appley Bridge, Gathurst, Wigan and Hindley.

But 26 of those timetabled September journeys – a quarter - were cancelled.

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A further four were more than 15 minutes late, the operator revealed in response to a Freedom of Information request.

Gathurst railway stationGathurst railway station
Gathurst railway station
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After a train no-show, those left stranded at the smaller Wigan stations have no alternative connections available to get to the city. They must either wait for the next train or use other forms of public transport.

Wigan MP Lisa Nandy said: “People are understandably sick and tired of this fiasco.

“It's absurd that people who rely on trains from Gathurst to get to work, education settings and medical appointments are being so regularly let down.

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"We have fought for years to save this vital service because of its importance to our community, and I will continue to defend it.”

While commuters from Wigan town centre’s two stations have the option of other services to Manchester, those travelling from Gathurst and Appley Bridge have only the one line, carrying two trains an hour.

Ms Nandy, shadow secretary of state for levelling-up, blamed years of government under-funding.

She added: "For years the Tory government has stood by while people across the north suffer from inadequate public transport.

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"We need to end the failed, fragmented rail system that has seen passengers come last, and put the public back in control.”

Northern did not respond to a request for comment.

A single ticket from Wigan to Manchester costs £8.