Passenger figures bounce back to 80%

THE latest figures from the Department for Transport show that railway passenger figures made a strong recovery in March.

The peak day was 18 March, when passenger figures reached 80 per cent of pre-lockdown levels, but the totals during the rest of the month were mostly more than 70 per cent.

The figures compared very favourably with the lowest levels seen in April and May 2020, when they dipped below 5 per cent in response to the first Covid lockdown and its restrictions on travelling.

The Railway Industry Association’s policy director Kate Jennings described the figures as ‘hugely positive’. She continued: ‘To have around 80 per cent of pre-Covid passenger levels during the middle of this month, only a matter of weeks after the end of Coronavirus restrictions, shows that passengers are returning in good numbers. These statistics are especially strong over the weekends, which is a clear vote of confidence in using rail for leisure travel.

‘Taking the train is a safe and sustainable way to travel, helping connect communities and driving economic growth. We hope to see these numbers continue to rise.’