East Berkshire Green Party criticises removal of peak-time train service
11 October 2015
SW Trains' short-notice decision to remove a peak-time morning service from Reading to Waterloo (the 7.24) until December flouts their own Passenger Charter promise to 'strive to operate to their published timetable' . This change has pushed passengers on to the services either side (the 7.12 and 7.42 from Reading) which were already very busy.
The unsatisfactory explanation given by the company claims that this change is because of ongoing carriage refurbishment being intensified, alongside glowing promises about the increased capacity to come . However, this long-planned refurbishment isn't reflected in their published autumn timetable, which features the service operating as normal.
This failure to provide a specified peak-time service for at least 2 months shows a serious lack of contingency planning by SW Trains management and a blatant disregard for the wellbeing of passengers on overcrowded trains. We urge all affected passengers to write to SW Trains to complain about the failure to provide the published service. We also suggest that the whole of the 7.12 and 7.42 trains become standard class while this disruption continues, to use the limited space available more effectively.
Derek Wall, who stood for parliamentary election in the Windsor constituency in May 2015 and regularly commutes into London along the Reading-Waterloo line, said:
'The Green Party have long believed that essential public services like transport infrastructure should not be run for private profit. Unacceptable situations like this are the inevitable result when profit is the driving motivation, along with excessive ticket prices. We are pleased to see that Labour under new leadership has followed the Green lead in calling for rail renationalisation, franchise by franchise as contracts expire.'
'Rail renationalisation has mainstream public support and it's about time the failure of privatisation was dealt with. Our expensive and fragmented railway system desperately needs to change, and the public definitely deserve a better deal.'