Metro bosses will shut station on Great North Run day to tackle cheeky queue jumpers

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Metro bosses have revealed they will shut a South Shields Metro station to stop cheeky passengers beating the queue on Great North Run day.

Transport chiefs announced they will close Chichester Metro station from 3pm on Sunday September 11 to improve waiting times for passengers and the smooth flow of trains.

They have now explained the reason behind it was to stop determined queue jumpers walking to Chichester then riding back to South Shields so they are on the train ready for its journey towards Newcastle and North Tyneside.

A spokesman said on Metro's Facebook page this morning: "It may seem strange closing a station to improve services for passengers but it does make sense, and here’s why:

"At South Shields our staff aim to get people queuing onto trains and get the trains away as frequently as the line allows – about one every 7-8 minutes. To do this we count the right number of people to completely fill a train onto the platform, so that when one comes in they can board immediately without delay.

"Over the years more people have tried to beat the queue by going to Chichester, getting on a train to South Shields than staying on for the journey back towards Newcastle.

"This causes delay at South Shields because not everyone waiting on the platform will get on, doors get jammed or even broken, the whole boarding process slows down and people are held up.

"To prevent this we are closing Chichester and giving clear advice to aim for South Shields only if catching the Metro towards Newcastle after the race."

Metro said it had "got this message out clearly" so runners, spectators and anyone making unrelated journeys knows in advance.

The spokesman added: "This is based on a system that works after the big summer concerts at Stadium of Light, and of course we’ll review it after this year’s race to see how effective it proves."