The UK’s first tram train, capable of using both tram lines and conventional rail, begins operation today.
The tram train, operated by Stagecoach Supertram, Network Rail and South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive (SYPTE) will begin operation today.
Passengers in South Yorkshire will be the first to use the new form of transport, designed to run on both the city’s tramlines and the rail network between Sheffield and Rotherham.
The idea behind the tram train is that passengers can make a single continuous journey from tram stops to conventional train stations. Passengers purchase tickets from an on-board conductor.
SYPTE project board member Steve Davenport said the scheme could transform local travel.
“As project partner we are thrilled, to introduce Tram Train services on South Yorkshire’s transport network later this month. The pioneering pilot has the ability to transform travel both locally and nationally,” he said. “Connecting the people and places in Sheffield and Rotherham marks the start of this journey. We hope passengers from the local area and beyond enjoy the benefits this new transport option will provide.”
The service is set to operate three times an hour, leaving from Sheffield Cathedral to Meadowhall South, before proceeding over a new section of track linking the tram line to the rail track called the Tinsley Chord, and on to the national rail network to Parkgate Retail Centre via Rotherham Central station.
The service beginning today is a government funded pilot programme which is set to run for two years while customer satisfaction, passenger numbers, reliability and costs are tested.
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