Train May Not Return 'Pre-Covid Service' At Chesterfield

A train company have no current plans to reinstate pre-Covid level services to Chesterfield railway station.

CrossCountry faced criticism this summer after initially scrapping all stops at the town’s railway station – before a partial U-turn saw peak-time services resume.

The company said it had taken the ‘difficult decision’ because of the extra time needed to get passengers on and off trains while maintaining social distancing.

Before the Covid-19 lockdown, CrossCountry trains called at Chesterfield every hour north and southbound on journeys between Scotland and the north-east and Birmingham and the south-west.

However, the firm said conditions were still not right to return to this level of service on weekdays – although it does want to encourage more leisure journeys.

A spokesperson said:

“As the original reasons for these changes remain, we are still unable to reinstate the pre-Covid weekday level of services at Chesterfield.

"However, we are resuming a two-hourly service on Saturday and Sunday afternoons to support the resumption of leisure and tourist journeys.”

Councillor Tricia Gilby, leader of Chesterfield Borough Council, said the situation was ‘not satisfactory’.

“I find the recent statement that full resumption of services is not currently under consideration for the December timetable particularly troublesome as it will affect many families during the festive period,”

she said.

“I am urging CrossCountry to make a full reinstatement, as soon as possible because the current level of service for people in Chesterfield and the surrounding area is not sufficient and this cannot carry on long term.”

CrossCountry also faced criticism from Chesterfield Civic Society.

Chairman Philip Riden said:

“They are trying to get away with a permanent degradation of the service they provide, which in my view strikes at the heart of what the borough and county councils are trying to do to regenerate Chesterfield, where one of the main selling points is a good train service to all parts of the country."