MPs and Rail User Federation meet to discuss the future of the Greater Anglain contract

WITH the franchise in charge of the rail network in East Anglia set to change, the Essex Rail Users Federation (ERUF) and local MPs came together to discuss the future.

In February 2012 the contract for the Greater Anglia railway services - currently held by National Express East Anglia - will expire leaving one of three companies to take charge.

The three companies shortlisted to take the contract are: Go-Ahead Group Ltd, Stagecoach Group Ltd and NV Nederlandse Spoorwegen.

Sir Alan Haselhurst, along with MPs from Witham, Colchester and Braintree, met with the ERUF to ensure that commuters and rail users avoid a repeat of the last change of franchise which saw a reduction in services.

At the meeting the sides outlined issues for the new franchise to take on board including; improvements to the current crop of trains, later last trains, wifi, no reduction in services and a five year freeze on car parking charges.

ERUF chairman Derek Monnery highlighted the increasing need for investment in extra tracks and the best place for this would be in Essex as it would benefit travellers throughout East Anglia heading into London.

Sir Alan raised the problems of the West Anglian mainline passengers and the need for investment in improvements on this line to keep pace with the development along the M11 corridor.