Fancy a coffee? Not without a ticket...

MEETERS and greeters at Huntingdon railway station will effectively be barred from station catering facilities - at least in theory -when automatic ticket gates are installed in July. The gates will allow access only to passengers with valid travel ticket

MEETERS and greeters at Huntingdon railway station will effectively be barred from station catering facilities - at least in theory -when automatic ticket gates are installed in July.

The gates will allow access only to passengers with valid travel tickets. The train operator, First Capital Connect, no longer sells platform tickets.

People dropping passengers off or meeting them from trains will have to buy a ticket to St Neots or Peterborough if they want a cup of tea or coffee while they wait, Hunts Post reader Humphrey Norvill has complained.

"It's a nonsense. The reason given by Network Rail was to stop fare evasion. They could do that by investing more money in staff," he said.


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But FCC says it is also recruiting 50 additional revenue protection staff to inspect tickets on its trains.

That will certainly be a novelty for Mr Norvill, a retired health and safety consultant. "In three years I have been travelling twice a week between Huntingdon and Peterborough, I have never had my ticket examined," he said.

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But FCC seems prepared to be flexible when the gates are installed. Staff must be present to help disabled travellers and others with tickets that do not operate the gates.

"Only ticket holders will be able to access the station - this is the same with all other stations that have ticket gates," said a spokesman. "But all our ticket gates are staffed so, if customers wish to wave off loved ones, I'm sure staff would consider such requests.

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