Labour candidate slams MP’s “hypocrisy” on ticket office closures

Dan Tomlinson said Theresa Viliers had “done little” to protect ticket offices for over a decade reports David Floyd

Labour candidate for Chipping Barnet Dan Tomlinson campaigning at Oakleigh Park station
Dan Tomlinson with campaign volunteers at Oakleigh Park station – (Credit – Dan for Chipping Barnet)

Labour’s candidate for Chipping Barnet has accused the current MP of “hypocrisy” over her opposition to the closure of station ticket offices. 

Dan Tomlinson slammed Theresa Villiers after she outlined her concerns about closures proposed by the Rail Delivery Group affecting stations in the constituency. 

He pointed out that during Villiers’ time as minister of state for rail and aviation in the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition administration, the government had approved a previous round of station closures.  

Commenting last week on the current proposed closures, Villiers said: “I have a series of important concerns that [the train operators] must address before they can justify changes to ticket office availability.”

Tomlinson, who has visited ticket offices in the constituency in recent weeks to meet staff and discuss the issue with passengers, said: “The hypocrisy is staggering. For over a decade, the Conservatives have done little to protect ticket offices and improve customer service levels on the rail network.

“1.2 million rail journeys start or end at New Barnet and Oakleigh Park stations each year, and yet the Conservatives want to close the vital ticket offices at both stations. The proposals would impact the many passengers using these stations, especially disabled and elderly railway users.”

He added: “There is strong local opposition to the closures and, with the consultation now extended, local residents should make sure they have their say by signing our petition and call on the government to stop the ticket office closures.”

Tomlinson’s petition to “Tell the Tory Government: save Barnet’s ticket offices” is online here.

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