Trains at two Merseyrail stations will be fully reinstated next week after more than a year of reduced services.
Rail services at Green Lane and Bromborough Rake stations saw a reduced service to decrease the number of delays on the Chester and Ellesmere Port lines.
This decision to run trains every half an hour prompted criticism from local Labour and Green councillors in Bromborough and Birkenhead.
Services were partially reinstated at Bromborough Rake first before being increased at Green Lane. The decision to prioritise one station first over another was labelled “a nakedly political decision” by Wirral Greens’ co-leader Cllr Pat Cleary.
However, Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram disputed this and said Cllr Cleary had not raised the issue with him. Mayor Rotheram previously said a full service would resume once a new fleet of trains began being rolled out in Wirral.
The new trains, which are able to carry 50% more passengers, will replace the current 40 year old fleet. The new trains have step-free access, more space for bikes, buggies, and disabled passengers. However, the rollout has not been smooth with faults disrupting services.
From 9 October, rail services to Green Lane and Bromborough will run four times an hour to Liverpool and four times to hour to Chester and Ellesmere Port.
Cllr Steve Foulkes, Chair of the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority’s Transport Committee, said, “These rail services are important to local people, so this is really good news for them. I want to thank passengers for being patient during the past few months, and I hope that more people than ever will enjoy travelling on our new state-of-the-art trains.”
Birkenhead councillor Pat Cleary said the news was positive calling it “great” but added, “It should never have happened in the first place and it’s about time it was fully restored.”