Metro celebrates 40 years in South Tyneside

Opening in March 1984, the Tyne and Wear Metro line to South Shields is now celebrating 40 years of operation with the occasion marked with a special birthday cake cutting ceremony at South Shields Interchange.

The line has carried 200 million passengers since it opened. Transforming connectivity in the borough the line has allowed people to get to work, education and complete leisure activities.

Cllr Audrey Huntley, Deputy Leader of South Tyneside Council, said: “The Metro is an integral part of everyday life for so many people in the borough and beyond, connecting them to jobs, study and leisure amenities, not to mention helping to showcase our tourism offer to millions of visitors.

“Sustainable travel is key if we are to achieve our carbon neutral goals, so as we collectively work towards a low carbon future the Metro will remain part of the fabric of our communities for decades to come.”

Cathy Massarella, Managing Director of Nexus, said: “We’re delighted to be celebrating the 40th anniversary of our Metro line in South Tyneside. It’s been transformative for the borough over the last four decades.

“We’ve seen an amazing 200 million journeys on the line since it opened in 1984. It’s part of everyday life for the people of South Tyneside, has boosted the local economy, and has helped to underpin the success of the Great North Run, which finishes in South Shields.

“It was a fantastic achievement to bring the Metro to South Tyneside and we are already looking ahead to an exciting future as we get ready to welcome first new Metro trains in customer service this year.

“When the Metro system first opened in 1980 the plans were already in place to extend the route beyond Heworth, widening the network’s connectivity, which in turn has helped to cut congestion on local roads.”

The line to South Shields was the final piece of the original Metro construction project and was formally part of the old Tyneside Electric Network. It was converted for Metro operation with a mix of new stations and some being transformed to become Metro stations. A further station was added at Simonside in 2008 and the original South Shields station on King Street was closed in 2019 and replaced by the new transport interchange.

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