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Important advice for key workers using public transport issued by Metro Mayor

Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram is issuing important information and travel advice for key workers who need to travel to deliver vital services to communities.

Whilst all non-essential travel should currently be avoided, Merseytravel and transport operators are working hard to provide resilient, dedicated services so that all those who have to make essential journeys are able to do so.

Services and timetables are under constant review and changes are being introduced this week in light of a number of key factors including large reductions in passenger numbers, as people adhere to the national advice regarding non-essential travel, working from home wherever possible and social distancing to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus.

Like all sections of the community, the crisis is having an impact on transport staff, meaning reduced staffing levels.

From Thursday 2 April, Merseyrail services will be running between 7am and 7pm, every 30 minutes on all lines. This decision takes into account reduction in passenger numbers, currently down by around 70% on weekday journeys, and to help ensure a reliable service can be maintained.

From Monday 6 April Mersey Ferries will temporarily suspend the current morning and evening commuter service due to a reduction in demand as current figures show there are less that 20 passengers per day using the service.

Bus services are also seeing a decline in passenger numbers and operators are continuing to provide services with revised timetables across the network.

The following advice is for those key workers using public transport for essential journeys:

  • Check timetables before you travel each day
  • Go to websites, journey apps and social media for the latest information
  • Merseyrail users should consider changing your times of travel to meet the network availability
  • If this is not possible, consider other modes of transport such as bus to make your journey.
  • Mersey Ferries customers should look for cross river rail and bus services
    • For cross river travel, Liverpool City Region Combine Authority has suspended tunnel tolls allowing for reduced cross river travel costs.
  • Maintain social distancing, there remains sufficient capacity to meet demand and allow this.
  • Use contactless payments if you can

For the latest travel and timetable information customers should check the Merseytravel and transport operators’ webpages and social media platforms in the first instance and on a daily basis as there are likely to be more changes ahead.


From Thursday 2 April services will be running between 7am and 7pm, Monday to Saturday, with services every 30 minutes across all lines.

Sunday services will operate between the hours of 8am and 7pm and are as follows:

Northern line

Hourly service

Chester line

Hourly service

Ellesmere Port line

Hourly service operating calling at all stations between Ellesmere Port and Hooton. Passengers can change at Hooton to continue their onward journeys.

New Brighton & West Kirby lines

45-minute service

Merseyrail  @merseyrail

Other rail operators

Rail services are running to revised timetables – please check before you travel.

Northern    @northernassist

Transpennine Express @TPEassist

Avanti West Coast @avantiwestcoast

London Northwestern Railway @LNRailway

Transport for Wales @tfwrail

East Midlands Railway @EastMidRailway

Bus services

Bus services are running but the frequency of some services has been reduced – please check before you travel.

Stagecoach @stagecoachMCSL

Arriva @arrivanorthwest

Mersey Ferries

From Monday 6 April the morning and evening commuter services will be temporarily suspended. This is due to an unprecedented fall in demand but this will be monitored on a regular basis.

Please keep checking the Mersey Ferries website and @merseytravel for the latest information.

Mersey Tunnels

The Queensway (Birkenhead) and Kingsway (Wallasey) Mersey Tunnels are currently open.

For the latest national information and guidance in relation to the Coronavirus please visit gov.uk and Public Health England websites.

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