Toilet charges are being scrapped for passengers at Manchester Victoria as part of a £1 million investment in the station.
The money will also be spent on improvements including:
- Full refurbishment of toilets
- New waiting areas on platforms 3, 4 and 5
- A new customer information point
- New customer information screens
- Improved wayfinding signage
- Removal of toilet charges
The Great North Rail Project upgrade will take place between April and the summer.
Network Rail, along with train operator Northern and its other partners, is improving stations across the North West of England to provide passengers with better experiences and journeys.
Rail minister Andrew Jones said: “Passengers deserve more modern, accessible and comfortable stations, so delivering these improvements and scrapping charges at Manchester Victoria is a positive development.
“As a Government we are investing a record £48bn to modernise our railways over the next five years. We are also working with Network Rail, Transport for the North and the train operators to deliver improved accessibility, reliability and facilities across the region.”
Chris Jackson, regional director at Northern, said: “We look forward to working with our colleagues at Network Rail, and Transport for Greater Manchester, to make Manchester Victoria an even better station for our customers.
Anna-Jane Hunter, director for North of England rail at Network Rail, said: “Together with our Greater Manchester Station Alliance partners, Northern and TfGM, we’re building on the regeneration of the station in 2015 by further improving the customer experience at Manchester Victoria.
“We know that toilet charges in stations are a frustration for passengers and we hope that removing them, as well as providing better facilities and improved information screens and signage, will help make customers’ journeys even better.”
Caroline Whittam, Transport for Greater Manchester’s deputy head of rail, said: “We welcome these improvements to the station, which will make passengers’ journeys easier, more accessible and more comfortable. Better stations are essential in encouraging more people to travel by train and in delivering our long-term strategy for Greater Manchester rail network.”
“Victoria is one of the busiest and most important stations in our city-region, and a key interchange with Metrolink. Enhanced customer information, nicer waiting areas and good quality toilets will be welcomed by passengers and we are pleased to see them upgraded.”
In 2015, Manchester Victoria underwent a £44 million transformation delivered by Network Rail, Manchester City Council and TfGM as part of the Great North Rail Project.
This upgrade saw a new roof, the refurbishment of the Grade II listed parts of the building, a new footbridge to Manchester Arena, new lighting and retail facilities to make the station brighter, lighter and more spacious.
The latest £1m investment is coming from the Department for Transport’s National Stations Improvement Fund and from a £15m customer benefit programme announced by the rail minister in December.
Transport for the North has welcomed the funding schemes, with rail users across the North of England set to benefit from improved facilities in similar upgrades across the region.