‘It is a great feeling that we can still continue to offer our normal service’ - Dewsbury Train Station staff ‘happy’ and ‘relieved’ at ticket office u-turn
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The Rail Delivery Group (RDG) revealed in July that almost all of the country’s 1,007 remaining ticket offices would be closed under the proposals, sparking concern among unions, staff and commuters.
However, Transport Secretary Mark Harper said that the government had asked train operators to withdraw their plans following a public consultation.
The news, says Donna Jasiewicz, has lifted the “weight” from the shoulders of the four customer support supervisors who serve passengers from the ticket kiosk at Dewsbury Train Station.
Donna, who has supported customers in the town for 20 years and helped to set up a campaign group to save the office, said: “It is just a feeling of total relief. I don’t think I actually realised the stress we have all been under with the worry about our jobs. It is such a weight off your shoulders.
“The first feeling was relief but then you start getting all these messages from people and everybody is so happy and so thankful that we did all the protesting and that their life isn’t going to change.
“I’ve had a girl on the phone who is visually impaired and she was in tears saying, ‘I just can’t believe it as I was so worried about how I was going to cope.’ The phone is non-stop with constant calls like that. People are just so relieved.
“I never ever thought that something so big would happen to a little station like Dewsbury. For the Facebook group to get 1,500 people in the first few hours, all fighting for the same thing for our little town - you just can’t believe it and how many lives it is going to impact and what a relief it is to everybody.”
Thanking everybody who supported her and her fellow colleagues - Laura Dittrich, Chris Blackburn and Ilyas Hans - in their bid to keep the kiosk open, Donna added:
“Without doubt the public have spoken. I know it has been a national thing and every town has put their own effort in but people of Dewsbury have really, really got behind this.
“I hope we have as much success with the sports centre as we have had with this. It goes to show that if people stick together we can get these kinds of results. It makes you feel so much more positive about things in general.
“I am just so happy that we are going to be still there giving the public what they require - the information, the help, and us just doing our job.
“It is a great feeling that we can still continue to offer our normal service. I just want to thank everybody for getting behind us.”