About 30 Auckland Transport staff are gathered at the entrance to Britomart train station chanting and holding banners in protest at plans to get rid of train managers.

It's the start of a campaign by the Rail and Maritime Transport Union demanding safer trains for Auckland.

Train managers are essentially guards and check tickets and ensure the safety of passengers.

The union claims Auckland Transport plans to scrap all 160 on-board train managers.

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Auckland Transport says it's replacing train managers with transport officers who will be trained to de-escalate conflict situations, helping more vulnerable passengers and issuing fare evaders with infringement notices.

While they won't be on every train, AT says the transport officers will work in pairs, and they will be rostered to be where they're most needed.

It would mean some trains would operate just with a driver.