Merseyrail sees 90,000 extra journeys during Eurovision

More than 90,000 extra journeys were recorded on the Merseyrail network during the seven days leading up to Eurovision. Tony McDonough reports

Merseyrail recorded 90,000 extra journeys during Eurovision. Picture by Tony McDonough


Merseyrail says it saw 90,000 extra journeys during the seven days of Eurovision – 24% above what it would normally expect for the time of year.

An estimated 500,000 people descended on Liverpool for the musical extravaganza. The final itself took place on Saturday, May 13, but the Eurovision Village at the Pier head kicked off nine days of celebrations on Friday, May 5.

A special strategy was put into operation by Merseyrail across the seven days to ensure the efficient management of the large number of passengers travelling across the city region.

Late night services ran on the two busiest nights, with trains running until the early hours of Sunday 14 May following the Grand Final. The final trains ran at 2.45am. Merseyrail says 96% of its services arrived on time.

Merseyrail supported the celebrations with a specially wrapped train, public information announcements by Graham Norton, Rylan and Ukrainian singer and co-host Julia Sanina, entertainment at city centre stations and even an Abba tribute act performing at Waterloo.

Dedicated space was also given over to initiatives to help support Ukraine. Merseyrail and Supplies for Ukraine CIC. partnered up to provide opportunities to buskers from Ukraine who have lost their audience due to the ongoing war. 

Speakers at four city centre stations played music by Ukrainian buskers while passengers could give support via a QR code to make donations to Supplies for Ukraine, who provide lifesaving, essential equipment to civilians and volunteers on the front lines of Ukraine.

Since it was established in March 2022, the organisation has impacted hundreds of Ukrainians, delivering tactical medical kits, protective gear, communication tech, drones and vehicles.

Passengers also helped raise funds by contributing spare change to the collection tins at Merseyrail stations.


A Bee Gees tribute act at Liverpool Central station during Eurovision


And city centre stations also became galleries to a photographic exhibition called Home, which aimed to support visitors and residents to connect with the daily lives of the Ukrainian people following Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

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Photographs were displayed alongside poetry at Birkenhead Central, Conway, Kirkby, Hamilton Square, James Street, Liverpool Central, and Moorfields.

The train operator even created its own Eurovision song, called Train of Love, with an accompanying video featuring staff and passengers which was watched by more than 10,000 people.

Jane English, acting managing director of Merseyrail, said: “All of our staff have worked so hard in the last few months to ensure that we were able to provide the best possible service for all passengers.

“The passenger numbers that we moved are huge, and a real testament to the hard work that everyone at Merseyrail has done. I’m incredibly proud of our staff.

“It wasn’t just about transport – we were also able to give people a great, fun experience thanks to the entertainment that we hosted at stations.”

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