In what could be a game-changing move for Manchester’s dog owners, Metrolink has said it is looking to run a trial later this year allowing dogs to ride its trams.
The trial will allow dogs to take journeys on the tram with their owners, unconditionally, for the first time since the network was launched in 1992.
Trialling dogs on the tram was one of Andy Burnham’s pledges as Metro Mayor, now TFGM has confirmed it is working with the mayor to try and make it happen soon.
Whilst the exact details of the scheme are yet to be revealed, a spokesperson for TGFM has said that the network is looking at the possibility of running a pilot later this year.
Danny Vaughan, TfGM’s Head of Metrolink, said: “A pilot scheme allowing non-assistance dogs on Metrolink was a manifesto commitment made by Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham, and we are currently working with the mayor’s office to explore the possibility of running a pilot scheme on the tram network later this year.
“The details of the pilot, such as when it will take place and for how long, have yet to be confirmed, but further information will be released when these details have been finalised.”
Good boys and girls are currently allowed to travel on buses and trains in Manchester, but not on the Metrolink – with the exception of assistance dogs and pets being taken to/from the PDSA charity in Old Trafford.
Justifications for retaining the ban today include concerns regarding passenger safety, fouling, damage to trams, animals’ behaviour, delays and people with allergies.
For the majority of Manchester’s dog owners (and dog lovers), the whole thing seems rather silly.
There’s been a number of campaigns over the years to lift the ban, but we think that now – following a series of lockdowns where more people than ever have gone and got themselves a furry friend – is the time to make it happen.
Seemingly, Metrolink is now getting on board too – with a little push from Andy Burnham.
Feature image – The Manc Group / Commons Wikimedia