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Mayor of Greater Manchester urges everyone to ‘do their bit’ and prepare for a different commute as hundreds of thousands return to education and work

Tens of thousands of extra journeys are expected on roads and public transport across Greater Manchester from next week as schools and colleges begin to reopen and more people return to work
• Mayor calls on people to plan ahead, allow extra time for journeys and cycle or walk if possible to reduce congestion and protect limited capacity on public transport
• People returning to work are also encouraged to avoid peak hours where possible
• TfGM and transport operators have worked hard to make sure services are as safe, clean and reliable as possible - but passengers are asked to wear a face covering unless exempt, maintain a safe distance when travelling and wash hands frequently.

Greater Manchester’s Mayor Andy Burnham has put out a plea for residents to do their bit in helping to keep everyone safe by planning their journeys ahead of the reopening of schools and colleges from next week.

With hundreds of thousands of young people set to return to education, and many people returning to work as the summer holidays end, roads and public transport are likely to be far busier than they have been for many months.

To help tackle the issue, people are asked to cycle or walk if they can for some or all of their journey – and to avoid the busiest times of the day if possible as capacity on public transport will be limited due to social distancing measures.

Passengers using public transport are also being reminded to wear a face covering (unless exempt), maintain a safe distance and wash their hands frequently to protect other passengers and help to maintain safety and cleanliness.

Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, said: “As more people return to education and work  it is vital we all do our bit in keeping each other safe when we travel. Wash your hands, wear a face covering and watch your distance.  These simple measures can have a big impact – so let’s work together to stop the spread. 

“This is absolutely vital as we head towards September, when hundreds of thousands of people will be returning to schools, colleges and work – some for the first time in many months. We have worked hard to make sure the transport network is  as safe, clean and reliable as possible - but we need everyone to play their part by following the basic rules and thinking about how and when they travel.

“Since March our roads have been noticeably quieter, the air is cleaner and more people are choosing to walk and cycle. I believe these are things we want to maintain as we return to education and work so let’s do our bit.

“Cycle or walk to school, college or work if you can, switch to public transport from your car if at all possible and, however you travel, try to avoid peak hours at the start and end of each day to keep the load on roads and public transport down.”  

Since March, significant work has been done by TfGM, Metrolink, bus and train operators to ensure public transport is as safe and clean as possible. Metrolink tickets and products such as Igo passes, EarlyBird and Clipper – as well as using contactless payment - can also help on their commute.

Public transport users will also need to follow safe travel guidance and take responsibility for keeping themselves and others safe. They should: 

  • Wear a face covering on-board and in stations and interchanges, unless they’re exempt
  • Keep their distance from other passengers where possible; 
  • Clean their hands regularly; and  
  • Use contactless payment or exact change only where possible. 

For information on public transport across Greater Manchester visit www.tfgm.com, call 0161 244 1000 (7am-8pm, Monday to Friday, and 8am-8pm at weekends and bank holidays) or follow @OfficialTfGM on Twitter.

Contact Information

Transport for Greater Manchester Press Office

0161 244 1055

mediarelations@tfgm.com

Notes to editors

Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) is the public body responsible for delivering Greater Manchester’s future transport strategy and commitments.

We also deliver a wide range of day-to day public transport and active travel services and projects to keep the city-region moving and growing.

With around six million journeys a day, we’re working hard to make travel easier through a better connected and well-informed Greater Manchester. To find out more about TfGM please visit tfgm.com/about-tfgm.