Suspended trams, full parking lots and trains subject to late cancellation amid Birmingham traffic chaos – .

Suspended trams, full parking lots and trains subject to late cancellation amid Birmingham traffic chaos – .

Visitors to Birmingham city center looking to enjoy the German market or do some Christmas shopping early this weekend have been warned to expect chaos.
With the city’s popular German market now well underway and shoppers looking to buy Christmas presents in advance, the city center is under pressure this weekend.

The entire West Midlands tram service was suspended from Saturday (November 13) for “at least a month” after cracks were found in the trams that could not be rectified, despite temporary repairs.

Read more : ‘Heads must roll’ – the fury over the suspension of the entire West Midlands tram fleet

A West Midlands Metro spokesperson said: “Earlier this year West Midlands Metro discovered cracks on our streetcars, which resulted in a temporary disruption of services for inspections and repairs.

“Temporary repairs were made to get our fleet back into service as soon as possible, but inspections revealed that more extensive and permanent repairs are now needed.

“To ensure the future safety of our customers and colleagues, we have made the decision to suspend all services from November 13, 2021 to carry out these repairs.

“We continue to work alongside the tram builder to understand the issues and get the repairs done as quickly as possible. At this time, we are unable to confirm when services will resume, but we expect it to take at least four weeks. “

With the tram service out of order, many visitors to Birmingham city center took to the road, with “very heavy traffic jams” reported and parking lots full.

West Midlands Roads, Transport for West Midlands Twitter account advising travelers of network disruptions suggested people might want to walk or cycle.

He tweeted on Saturday afternoon: “Digbeth, Markets and Bull Ring area Birmingham. Very big traffic jams. Travel delays.

“Plan ahead. Is your trip necessary? Is your trip short? Can you walk or rent a bike in the West Midlands instead?

“The parking lot has been reported to be full or close to capacity around the downtown retail facilities. Expect delays ”

Read more : The whole fleet of suspended trams: everything we know so far

And anyone who thinks they can catch a train to the city to avoid the roads may have to think again, as Covid continues to cause staff problems and hit services.

The West Midlands Railway account tweeted: “Problems have been reported. Birmingham New Street Service Cancellations: Due to the unavailability of a member of the train crew at Birmingham New Street, fewer trains may run. “

And the Birmingham New Street Network Rail account said: “Cancellations are expected tonight. Please check your train service before traveling.

“The additional staff are here to help, we are here to help, please be kind. “

When asked what the cause of the expected late cancellations was, BirminghamLive was directed to an update from West Midlands Railway which said: ‘We are sorry if you have been affected by a cancellation due to a shortage. recently available drivers.

“This is due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on our train crew.

“Before the start of the pandemic, we had started recruiting additional drivers and guards to equip our new trains as part of our plan to develop our service and to take into account the higher than average number of drivers who must retire now.

BrumWish 2021 aims to deliver thousands of Christmas gifts to young children in need across our city – the homeless, the vulnerable, children in care and children with little.

This year’s appeal is bigger and better than ever – as we’ve partnered with our # Toys4Birmingham partners including Thrive Together Birmingham, Birmingham Playcare Network, Edgbaston Foundation and Birmingham Forward Steps.

Are also involved Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Trust, Barnardo’s, Spurgeon Children’s Charity, The Springfield Project in Sparkhill, St Paul’s Community Development Trust and Your Local Pantry, which operates food centers in 12 locations across Birmingham and the Black Country.

You can purchase a gift from the #Brumwish Amazon Wishlist here.

Or you can collect and drop off donations of new and nearly new toys and gifts on special donation days at Edgbaston Stadium, B5 7QU, Saturday November 27, Friday December 3 and Saturday December 4, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. where volunteers will be waiting to see you.

New or nearly new, unwrapped gifts, books and toys for all ages will be accepted.

You can also donate cash, which will go into a fund held by a charitable partner to be used to fill in any gaps or purchase specialized toys for children with additional needs. This is the link to donate.

The statement continued, “Unfortunately, due to Covid-19 and social distancing constraints, our driver training program has been severely disrupted with over 25,000 training days lost.

“This has dramatically increased the time it takes for trainees to become fully qualified train drivers. “

He added that training was now “fast-tracked” to bring the number of train drivers “to full strength”.

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