Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

FOUR Hours to Get Home

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

FOUR Hours to Get Home

Article excerpt

A HEAVILY-PREGNANT woman who spent FOUR HOURS getting a train home from work was among hundreds of commuters hit by Northern Rail delays and cancellations.

Passengers faced travel chaos on the first working day of the under-fire operator's new timetable.

According to the 'Northern Fail' app, 327 services were fully or partially cancelled on Monday.

A week before, on May 14, it was 179. Becky McCrorie told the M.E.N. she was 'barged out of the way' amid the chaos and blamed both stressed-out commuters and rail staff for her 'horrendous' journey to Westhoughton, Bolton, from her office in Altrincham.

Becky, 30, is seven months pregnant with her first child. It took her four hours to get home. Her journey usually takes around an hour.

Jostling to get on a train, Becky she said she took a blow to the stomach and was forced to stand in a toilet due to the cramped conditions.

She started her job as an admin worker at the Cartwright Group three months ago and says her commute on Northern trains running from Bolton to Manchester city centre has been getting worse and worse.

"It was as bad as it's ever been on Monday," said Becky. "This morning was bad so I purposefully left work early to try and avoid the worst of it. But when I got to Deansgate station it was just chaos. There were three trains I couldn't get on. I approached the staff, explained I was pregnant and asked if they could help me get on a train.

"I'm seven months gone now and it's very clear by looking at me that I'm heavily pregnant. When I did eventually get on a train I was hit in the stomach by a woman, who didn't even apologise. And the only space I could get was by standing in the toilet along with three other men.

"At one point a drunk man came in and just started urinating next to us. As you can imagine all this left me really upset. It was just awful.

"It makes me want to not to bother on Tuesday, but because I'm going to be starting maternity leave soon I have to."

According to the 'Northern Fail' app, which collects Northern performance data, 196 services were fully cancelled on Monday, while 131 were partially cancelled, meaning they didn't call at every stop. …

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