At Great Northern, Southern and Thameslink, we want to modernise the way we operate approximately 80 of our busier stations for the benefit of passengers, many of whom now buy their tickets online, or use Oyster, contactless and smartcards.
Where sales from ticket offices are low, we want to bring staff out from behind the windows and on to the concourse to work where they’re needed most, as Station Hosts, providing assistance and helping sell tickets from ticket machines and their own handheld devices.
All the affected stations will be staffed from the very first train the very last, seven days a week.
This will drive other customer benefits – we’ll also be able to increase the opening hours of facilities passengers have told us are important, such as waiting rooms, toilets and lifts.
These proposals opened to three weeks of public consultation today, Monday 22 February 2016, and will be discussed with London TravelWatch and Transport Focus and require approval from the Department for Transport. We are also speaking to our trades unions about this.
There will be no compulsory redundancies as a result of our plans.
There are three bands of stations identified:
- Stations where we sell fewer than 12 tickets an hour: here we propose to bring staff out from behind the ticket office windows and on to the concourse where they’re needed most, to provide assistance and help sell tickets from ticket machines and their own handheld devices.
- Stations where we sell more than 12 tickets an hour but where most passengers still use ticket machines and other ways to pay such as Oyster, contactless and smartcards: here we propose to relocate the ticket selling equipment to a station hosting point so the staff are available on the concourse to provide assistance but still able to sell tickets for longer than ticket offices are currently open.
- Stations where we still rely heavily on ticket offices in the peak: Here we propose to staff the ticket office window at peak times but we will also position ticket selling equipment at a station hosting point so the staff are available on the concourse.