Readers will remember the first lockdown when open access rail firms Grand Central and Hull Trains suspended operations.

Now both operators have announced the same again. The difference this time is that both are giving notice of days rather than hours. The firms say services will be suspended from Saturday January 9.

Grand Central says it will resume services on March 1, while Hull Trains says services will not resume “until further notice.”

Louise Cheeseman, MD of Hull Trains, tweets “It is with regret that we yet again must announce the suspension of Hull Trains from Saturday [January 9]. We are doing this to protect the long term future of the business.”

Meanwhile a spokesman for Grand Central said, “It’s hugely disappointing for us to be starting 2021 by removing our trains from the communities they serve.

“However even before Monday’s government announcement of a total lockdown the impact of tightening Tier restrictions and East Coast Mainline engineering works had caused a major drop in passenger traffic for January and February.”

Both operators are open access. It means they can expect no financial support from the government during these difficult times.

Meanwhile there are reports that other rail services (those operated by the regular train firms) will be reduced by around 50 per cent in the coming weeks.

This comes as no surprise as these operators cut services by a similar amount during the first lockdown.

We shall update when further details become available.,