RAIL operator Northern is hoping to encourage more schoolchildren to let the train take the strain from next month.

The company, which runs services on the Airedale line, is offering 75 per cent off train tickets for students making the commute to and from school.

Unlimited travel between any two stations on the Northern network is on offer, including at weekends and during school holidays.

The discount is available on annual tickets bought as part of the Under 16 Education Season Ticket scheme.

Last year, around 3,300 students used the initiative.

Mark Powles, for Northern, says: "The school run by car can be one of the most stressful times of the day for parents, so we want to make it a thing of the past.

"With 75 per cent off the cost of their journey for anyone that signs up for the full school year, our Under 16 Education Season Ticket scheme offers one of the most generous discounts to students of any scheme in the country.

"By encouraging young people to use the train from an early age, we also hope to kickstart a lifelong habit of commuting by rail."

For further information about the scheme, go to northernrailway.co.uk/tickets/educational-season.