Mark Hopwood, Managing Director of South Western Railway said “I wanted to update you on the steps we are taking to ensure that those customers who do need to travel with us, can do so safely.  This has included promoting the latest Government messaging on using public transport at our stations and on our trains.  We’re encouraging social distancing on board our trains and at our stations by introducing stickers and vinyls to serve as a reminder of the 2m guidance.  This week, we have also begun the installation of hand sanitiser machines at over 100 of our stations, so that our customers can help fight the virus before and after they travel with us.  We have also produced an animated guide providing our top 10 tips for travelling with us covering all stages of the journey, from before customers leave their homes, to arriving at our stations and travelling on board our trains.  You can view the video here.  As I’m sure you are aware, from 15 June, the wearing of face coverings on public transport will become mandatory.

The Government advice on essential journeys has not changed.  So, we’re asking all our customers to consider whether their journey is really necessary.  If they have no other option but to use our services, we’re encouraging them to travel at less busy times of the day.  I also wanted to update you on the current progress of refunds for our customers. We have received around 35,000 refund requests in total, and we have processed around 29,000 of them.  This means, around 83 per cent of requests have been processed, with around 6,000 currently outstanding.  Our teams are continuing to work hard to process these refunds, and we now expect all outstanding refunds will be completed by mid to late June.”