Chester Railway Station, C Julia Hatmaker For Place North West
By the end of the rollout, every city in the North West will have contactless ticketing, according to a Department for Transport spokesperson. Credit: Julia Hatmaker for Place North West

Government to invest £360m in rail ticketing improvements

Julia Hatmaker

The money will go towards introducing tap-in and tap-out ticketing, as well as London-style price caps, to more than 400 stations across the North.

The Northern stations will make up more than half of the stations being invested in, with the Department for Transport saying the funds would go towards introducing rail ticketing reform to more than 700 stations across the country.

The government said the changes would be rolled out over the next three years, with every city in the North West having pay-as-you-go and contactless ticketing by the end of that period. Funds would also go towards providing greater integration between local bus and tram networks, according to the department.

It is hoped that the changes will not only improve daily commutes but also simplify journeys and make sure passengers are charged the best price.

“Passengers across the North and Midlands have waited far too long to see the same fast, easy and convenient ticketing as those in London,” said transport secretary Grant Shapps. “We’re determined to put that right.

“Today’s investment is just the first phase of our efforts to overhaul our rail network, focused on improving journeys for passengers right across the country.”

The news comes ahead of the Integrated Rail Plan’s publication, which will outline the government’s plans for future rail work. IRP will allegedly water down Northern Powerhouse Rail, ditching plans for a new rail link between Manchester and Leeds in favour of upgrading the existing route.

That decision has been met with criticism by Northern leaders.

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The sweetener before Shapps pulls the plug on HS3. You will have London style ticketing with Tirana style trains.

By Elephant

@Elephant, I was thinking exactly the same. This is just the government saying “You won’t have the infrastructure like London, but you will have the ability to pay for the Victorian infrastructure improved”.

By Jo

More crumbs, when will they fund the proposed upgrade of the Oxford road train station.

By Meeseeks

Reneging on delivering crossrail for the north and HS2 (eastern leg) but introducing a ‘new ticketing system’ is an absolute farce. It’s a bit like saying “I’ve burgled your house but don’t worry, I fed the cat”. Shambles.

By BC

UK government civil servants in London receive UK tax money and then decide how much to give back (invest) and to whom. It is not for folk in the North to decide. They can mither and moan as much as they want. People far away of which we know nothing will decide what you get … or not.

By james yates

If we`re having new ticketing across the North why can`t we have the full NPR to go with it, forget HS2 we want NPR.

By Anonymous

Perfect analysis BC. Leeds will get a tram with one line probably in about 20 years. A sickening betrayal again. On a recent trip to Ealing in West London, there was a mainline station, three tube lines and a couple of Crossrail stations too and West Yorkshire and GM with a combined population of 5 and a half million get an upgrade on a line built by the Victorians but never fear we will soon have a new ticket system.

By Elephant