Passengers in Lichfield will be able to get refunds on train tickets under new emergency measures, the Government has confirmed.
The Department for Transport (DfT) said it was temporarily suspending franchise operations on routes across the country.
It means operators will run day-to-day services for a “management fee” while the Government takes over revenue and risk.
The DfT also added that passengers with advance tickets will be able to get a refund, while all season pass holders can claim a refund on unused time on their tickets.
Secretary of State for Transport, Grant Shapps MP, said:
“We are taking this action to protect the key workers who depend on our railways to carry on their vital roles, the hardworking commuters who have radically altered their lives to combat the spread of coronavirus, and the frontline rail staff who are keeping the country moving.
“People deserve certainty that the services they need will run or that their job is not at risk in these unprecedented times.
“We are also helping passengers get refunds on Advance tickets to ensure no-one is unfairly out of pocket for doing the right thing.
“These offers will give operators the confidence and certainty so they can play their part in the national interest.”Grant Schapps, Secretary of State for Transport
Figures have revealed a 70% drop in passenger numbers during the coronavirus outbreak.
The Government said the decision to temporarily nationalise the railways would help ensure trains kept on running.
Paul Plummer, chief executive of the Rail Delivery Group, which represents train operators and Network Rail, said:
“The rail industry is working together so that people and goods can keep making essential journeys during this unprecedented national challenge, getting key workers to hospitals, food to shops and fuel to power stations.
“The industry strongly welcomes the Department for Transport’s offer of temporary support and while we need to finalise the details, this will ensure that train companies can focus all their efforts on delivering a vital service at a time of national need.
“We would like to thank our people, who continue to do an incredible job in difficult circumstances.”Paul Plummer, Rail Delivery Group