Train operator issues apology
THE new train operator for rail services across East Anglia has apologised for its performance during the first month of its contract.
Greater Anglia, the company which took over the franchise in the east – including trains through Stansted – from National Express East Anglia on February 5, issued a statement on its website.
The firm’s managing director, Ruud Haket, said the winter weather, train faults and problems with overhead cables had caused delays.
“We are the first to admit that our performance has not been to the level expected nor demanded by you, our customers, during this time and for this we are sorry,” he said.
“Ensuring our service is run on time is important to you and we understand the impact it has when we’ve let you down.”
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Mr Haket added that the service had improved in the last few weeks, with 90.6 per cent of trains arriving within five minutes of their scheduled time.
“We would like to thank all our customers for their patience since the start of the Greater Anglia franchise and reiterate our commitment to improving our train service and the quality of information you receive when problems occur,” he said.
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Greater Anglia won the franchise to provide train services across Essex, Hertfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Suffolk, as well as transport links to London, at the end of October last year. The contract will run until July 2014, when it will come up for renewal for a longer period of 15 years.
It is thought that Greater Anglia, the British branch of Dutch train firm Abellio, will be in pole position in the race for the longer contract.
In the statement, Mr Haket added that plans had been made to cut disruptions. He also said the company was looking at installing a new signalling system in the tunnel near Stansted Airport.