Funding during the Covid-19 pandemic

Nexus, the Tyne and Wear Passenger Transport Executive, has been allocated funding of up to £40.2 million as a contribution towards forecast losses for Tyne and Wear Metro for the period 17 March 2020 to 4 April 2021.  The funding has been used to subsidise the costs of operating the Metro network.

Due to patronage levels falling to around 5% of pre-Covid levels during the lockdown period, and since recovering to less than 40% after that was lifted but falling to under 20% in the second lockdown, we have operated the following interim service patterns since 23 March 2020, from the dates stated:

  • 23 March 2020 – 12 minute core service with no additional peak trains.
  • 24 March 2020 – 24/30 minute frequency with some additional peak services.
  • 4 May 2020 – 24/30 minute frequency with an increase in additional peak services.
  • 18 May 2020 – 12 minute daytime frequency until 20:00 then 30 minute service Monday to Friday. 30 minute service on weekends.
  • 6 June 2020 – 12/15 minute daytime frequency until 20:00 then 30 minute service thereafter.
  • 29 November 2020 – 12/24 minute daytime frequency Monday to Friday until 18:00 then 20 minute service thereafter.
    24-30 minute service on weekends.

The current situation is the timetable implemented from 29 November 2020 which is shown in more detail below as well as additional peak services each weekday morning and afternoon.

  • Monday-Friday:
    A 15-30 minute service 5am-7am; A 12-24 minute service 7am-6pm (which means a train every 6-12 minutes between South Gosforth and Pelaw); A 20 minute service 6pm until the end of the day.
  • Saturdays:
    A 15-30 minute service 5am-9am; A 24 minute service 9am-6pm (which means a train every 12 minutes between South Gosforth and Pelaw); A 15-30 minute service from 6pm until the end of the day.
  • Sundays:
    A 30 minute service all day (which means a train every 15 minutes between South Gosforth and Pelaw).

Our service patterns pre-Covid provided a minimum 12-minute frequency at all stations Monday-Saturday daytime with a 15-minute frequency evenings (after 19:00) and Sundays.  At stations between South Gosforth and Pelaw the frequency was 6 minutes and 7.5 minutes respectively.  Additional peak services also operated between Monkseaton and Pelaw between 07:00-09:00 and 16:00-18:00, and have been restored.

First trains operated from 05:00 and last trains until 01:00 depending on station.  There have been no changes to first and last train times throughout this period.

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