Last month I wrote a blog to highlight the Delay Repay scheme. If your train journey is delayed by 30 minutes or more, for whatever reason, you are due compensation. You can find details of the scheme here - https://www.davidcrausby.co.uk/get_a_refund_for_your_delayed_train_journey
However, several local residents have also raised some concerns about the way Northern run their scheme.
I submitted questions to the Transport Secretary, and I have now received answers.
Local commuters who use System One travel cards, entitling them to travel on both trains and buses, have been repeatedly told by Northern that they are not eligible for the Delay Repay scheme. This clear statement from the Minister says that they should be paid. I have now raised this with Northern directly and I hope that they will adjust their processes as quickly as possible.
The biggest complaint about Northern’s Delay Repay scheme is that it can take months to have a claim processed.
Our local commuter services are not ones where you would typically buy an advance ticket for a set travel time, so the automatic compensation scheme mentioned does not reflect the experience of most rail users.
Northern need to get a grip on these long delays and ensure passengers receive the refund they are entitled to in a timely fashion.
I am aware that some rail franchises are looking to implement a 15 minute standard for Delay Repay (DR15), while Northern currently says you need to be delayed by 30 minutes to qualify.
While I am pleased that new franchises will have this written into the contract, Northern’s current franchise will last until at least 2025 so it will be of little comfort to Bolton residents. I hope that Northern and the Department for Transport can come to an arrangement and introduce DR15 much sooner than that.
I will continue to pursue these matters and push for better local rail services. In the meantime, I’m always happy to raise concerns so please get in touch if you have any issues or questions.