Sunderland students give their opinion on current public transport


Public transport. Love it or hate, it is a huge thing used daily and is what many people rely on.

Everyone and their goldfish has most likely used public transport at some point in their life and everyone’s experiences are different. Did you get a seat instantly? Was it too noisy? Were there maybe cancellations? Best experience of your life? We hear experiences from students currently attending Sunderland University.

A public survey was provided which had just five questions. These questions ranged from asking if they had recently used public transport, to if they had ever had a bad experience, to if they would change anything.

One of the questions read: “When using public transport, do you tend to find it too busy, normal or quiet?” Shockingly, 71.43 per cent said  “Too busy”, 28.57 per cent “Normal” and 0 per cent said “Quiet”. This provides an insight into train and Metro use. No student seemed to mention buses.

The survey then asked: “Have you had any bad experiences with public transport? If yes, please expand!” It was clear from the answers that many people have. One student listed, “Regular delays, bad customer service”, giving an example of where there was a 20-minute delay. They – and other passengers – were not informed until after the problem was fixed. The student continued to say: “Far too crowded at peak times”. This is an ongoing problem within the North East, where most trains only consist of two carriages.

Another point brought up by a student was, “near(ly) constant strikes, delays and cancellations”. This was proven to be true after rail firm Grand Central had to apologise after many of their services were cancelled due to a lack of train drivers – mainly because of strikes.

In the survey, respondents were also asked whether they would want any changes made within public transport. Unsurprisingly, the main change mentioned was having “more carriages”, especially “during peak time”. Another suggestion was having a specified quiet carriage on the Metro.

Finally, respondents were asked to rate public transport in the North East. A total of 42.86 per cent said it was “not the greatest”, the same percentage said it was “mediocre/nothing too special” and 14.29 per cent said it was “pretty good”.

From the survey results, it is clear to see that changes do need to be made. What is your view on public transport within the North East?

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