Kemble Railway Station

Council hits out at plans to close rail ticket offices

Cotswold District Council will be requesting that local rail bosses respond to concerns from councillors, on behalf of local residents, with regards to the closure of ticket offices across the country.

This follows the announcement that train companies are planning to close up to 1000 rail ticket offices across England over the next 3 years. This could mean ticket offices in Cotswold District stations at Moreton in Marsh, Kemble and Kingham could close.

The Council firmly believes that these ticket offices play a crucial role in serving the residents of the Cotswolds. They offer invaluable assurance and confidence to customers seeking assistance with ticket-related inquiries, especially in more rural train stations.

Furthermore, the Council is particularly worried about the potential adverse impact the ticket closures will have on the elderly and disabled residents in the Cotswolds, as well as those who may have limited IT skills. The possible impact on local jobs for those working at the rail stations is also of concern.

The motion against the closures of rail ticket offices, proposed by Cllr Paul Hodgkinson and seconded by Cllr Angus Jenkinson, was debated at Full Council and a cross party agreement was reached.

Cllr Paul Hodgkinson, Cabinet Member for Health, Leisure & Culture, said: “It is such a worry for people in our district to hear of the plans to close 1000 rail ticket offices across the country and what that might mean for train stations in our district. I really hope the train companies listen and understand how important it is to have staff available to be able to assist and advise those who may not be able to access digital services. 

“Travelling by train can already be very stressful to passengers with the increase in ticket prices, delayed trains and cancelled services. We should be doing all we can to encourage people to use alternatives to the car including having the personal touch of customer service at ticket offices. 

“As your council we have made our position clear that we will be doing all we can to lobby the rail operator to protect our local stations and our ticket office staff.”

Contact Information

Cotswold District Council Communications Team

Notes to editors

Notes to editors:

Statistics from Age UK indicate that almost 3 million elderly individuals in the UK lack internet access [i], while data from the Royal National Institute for Blind People reveals that only 3% of individuals with partial or complete sight loss feel confident in using ticket machines [ii].

[i] Age UK analysis of English Longitudinal Study of Ageing Covid 19 Study, Wave 1-2, 2020. [data collection]. 3rd Edition. UK Data Service. SN: 8688, DOI: 10.5255/UKDA-SN-8688-3   


The motion requires the Council to:

  • Instruct the Chief Executive to write to Mark Harper MP Secretary of State for Transport, and the Chief Executive of the Rail Delivery Group, expressing Council’s opposition to the possible closure of staffed rail ticket offices – and in particular the office(s) at Moreton in Marsh, Kemble and Kingham.
  • Instruct the Chief Executive to write to Great Western Railway expressing the Council’s opposition to any plans to close the staffed ticket office(s) at Moreton in Marsh, Kemble and Kingham.
  • Refer this issue to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee with the recommendation that representatives from Great Western Railway are invited to attend a Scrutiny Meeting at the earliest possible point to discuss future plans for ticket offices and staffing at our local stations.
  • Petition the MP for the Cotswolds to write to Mark Harper MP, Secretary of State for Transport, to request a review of the provision of rural ticket offices in the Cotswolds.

BBC News article about the closures: 


Cllr Paul Hodgkinson, Cotswold District Council Cabinet Member for Health, Leisure and Culture, at Kemble railway station.