Politicians across Northern England have called for ticket price cuts for rail passengers forced to use old Pacer trains which were due to be scrapped.

The trains, built in the 1980s as a short-term, cost effective alternative to larger trains on the railway, have become dilapidated and have been criticised for their lack of comfort and disregard for ecological impact.

Rail company Northern Rail was supposed to withdraw them all from service by the end of the year but now says it cannot replace them in time.

Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham, Leeds City Council leader Judith Blake and Sheffield City Region Mayor Dan Jarvis say the ramshackle units are unacceptable.

Mr Burnham believes that customers who are still using the unfit trains should be awarded compensation in the form of discounted ticket prices until the trains are finally replaced.

The letter sent from the three political figure heads acknowledged that removal of the Pacers without a suitable replacement would be worse.

They state: “As we are forced into accepting the temporary retention of Pacers, we expect you to commit, as a matter of urgency, to appropriate financial compensation to the passengers affected.”

Norther Rail has not said when the removal will now take place.

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