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General Manager for London Trams, Mark Davis, Discusses Travel as Croydon Reopens

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With over 20 years’ experience in London transport, including a former position as General Manager of London Docklands Railway, and since 2018, as General Manager of London Trams, Mark Davis is in an excellent position to lead on the challenge that is adapting to the new conditions on London trams, as well as a source of knowledge on public transport in London. As a Croydon BID board member, he took the time to talk to us to answer questions and provide much reassurance in the run up to the reopening of many town centre businesses on the 15th June.
By the 15th June, Mark says that the London Trams will be up to pre-Covid service levels from Monday to Friday, and by Saturday 20th, there will be a full weekend service. This means that a full service of 30 trams will be running (out of a fleet of 35). This exceeds the recovering performance of any other London transport; partly as London Trams don’t have to accommodate other links and timetables in the same way that London Underground and London Overground do. 
 
London Trams are regularly sending their specialist cleaning teams to clean Tram stops. Additionally, all London Trams have been treated with a specialist anti-viral product throughout the carriages that lasts 30 days, and there are further plans to renew this as necessary. Every night all the Tram carriages are cleaned thoroughly. 
 
Across all London transport, there will be a reduced capacity due to social distancing measures. For example, double decker buses will have a capacity of 20 people, single decker only 10, and London Trams will only be able to accommodate 22 or 23 passengers at a time. Of course, whilst there is less general demand, this may result in a very pleasant journey for some, although it may also mean a longer wait at the tram stop at peak times.
 
From Monday 15th June, it will be mandatory across all London’s public transport to wear a face covering. All transport staff will wear face masks (unless they are safe not to so, for example in an enclosed cab of a tram). Transport for London will also be giving free single-use face masks to passengers for a limited time at certain designated locations, such as West Croydon bus station, to facilitate all passengers’ ability to meet this new measure. Of course, children with breathing difficulties or people with disabilities that make it difficult to wear a face covering will be exempt from this new mandatory measure. As always, the advice will remain to wash your hands  before and after travelling on public transport, and/or carry hand sanitizer, which is now widely available again.
 
As always, the British Transport Police are available to support the safety of all TfL staff and passengers if these measures need further reinforcement.  However, as General Manager for London Trams, Mark is optimistic that most people will wear a face covering and advocacy will ensure passengers will adhere to the new measures and respect the social distancing as much as possible. It is clear to all that there has been a wider appreciation amongst the general public for key workers since the start of the pandemic.
 
Mark said:
“I’m in absolute awe of all the people in my team, all the key workers, who have worked so hard to keep our services running throughout the crisis. We sadly lost a colleague to the virus. With the increased risk of being a key worker well-known, our staff have continued to work exceptionally hard, at the same time supporting our colleagues who have had to shield.”
 
For businesses in Croydon town centre, increased consideration to your staff’s travel arrangements and the challenges that they may face, as well as adapting timetables to avoid peak hours when possible, is generally advised.
 
Thanks, Mark, for taking the time to talk to us.
 
For more information on the new measures and useful information from TfL, please follow the link below.

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