Update 14:25, Tuesday March 31:
LNER has announced it will step in to help Hull Trains’ passengers.
From today, it will operate one of its bi-mode trainsets as follows:
0658 Hull-London Kings Cross
1718 London Kings Cross-Hull
LNER says it will be accepting travellers holding Hull Trains’ tickets on what’s termed a “mutual ticket acceptance” basis.
No Hull Trains services are now running between London Kings Cross and Hull.
The open access rail company announced the decision yesterday afternoon and services have been suspended as of today (Monday March 30)
Louise Cheeseman, managing director of Hull Trains, said “We have explored every avenue to try and keep trains running but sadly it is not currently financially viable to run our services.”
Steve Montgomery, managing director of First Group (Hull Trains’ owner) added that “Passenger volumes at Hull Trains have reduced substantially since mid-March.”.
“Current passenger numbers make it impossible to maintain the ongoing level of losses we have seen.”
This news comes only a few months after Hull Trains had introduced new Paragon trains equipped with the latest onboard facilities. These are bi-mode as the section of line between East Coast Mainline is not electrified.
Hull Trains is believed to be the first mainline operator to suspend services.
Why? Because, unlike its rival LNER, Hull Trains is an ‘open access’ operator.
This means it pays no franchise fees to the government but it also means it cannot expect financial assistance at times like these.
LNER is currently operated by the state. It offers a number of indirect London-Hull services with a change (to Northern) required at Doncaster.