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Issue:- Monday, 16 May 2016

Headlines and reports on this page = 3 news items.    Page - 12.

Letters to the Editor:- "difference in fares on Merseyrail" follow up
Report by Patrick Trollope

A few weeks back we received a request from Mr Macrae asking us to look into a problem he had found when purchasing return tickets from the ticket machine, located in Southport Station. He and his family had been in Southport for a weekend visit and had decided to take a day out visiting Liverpool by rail, on the Saturday. He told us that:- "Purchasing return tickets from the ticket machine at Southport Station cost £6.45 each." He went on to add:- "Before going through the ticket barrier, we spoke to customer service staff with reference to train times, Station nearest Albert Docks etc. They asked if we wanted to purchase our tickets and mentioned that the return fare on Saturday or Sunday was £5. We said that we had purchased our tickets at the machine which charged £6.45. The staff said 'we should have come to the ticket desk because the machine is not intelligent enough to work out the correct fare for a Saturday!' Attempts to get a refund were unproductive." That is when Mr Macrae decided to contact us saying:- "Although the amounts are small I was wondering if the local residents of Southport are aware of the difference in fares and if others are being short changed."

We (our newsroom team) then contacted Merseyrail to find out why this is happening. Merseyrail quickly got back to us. We then put both parties in touch with each other. Merseyrail's Head of Customer Experience, Mr Suligowski, has since been in contact with Mr Macrae saying:- "Your recent letter to the editor of the Southport Reporter has been passed to me as Head of Customer Experience at Merseyrail. I was disappointed to learn of your recent experience when travelling from Southport Station. I've been speaking with the Station Manager, who is going to spend some time looking at the exact circumstances and make sure we learn from the issues you have raised. As a gesture of goodwill, I'd like to offer you a £20 voucher that can be used for use on the Merseyrail Network. We really appreciate feedback from customers and I want to offer my sincere thank you for taking the time to bring this to our attention."

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Our Editor has since been in contact again with Merseytravel and we are pleased that we could help you. We would also like to say thank you to Merseytravel for their quick response and for helping us on this matter.  We would like to know if any of our other readers have had problems like this. If you have please contact us, but you must have kept the ticket and also have proof of purchase. Email us to:- News24@SouthportReporter.com.

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