EXCLUSIVE: Train operator London Midland have assured Lichfield MP Michael Fabricant that services operating through Lichfield Trent Valley will improve.
The vow came after a summit between Mr Fabricant, London Midland’s managing director Steve Banaghan and the company’s head of communications, Rachel Webster.
Mr Fabricant told The Lichfield Blog:
“I asked when will we see any light at the end of the tunnel. The MD said that there would be a timetable change on May 18th and they hoped that we would see a major improvement in reliability from then on. There would be a further improvement from 2010.
“In particular, in answering a question from me, he hoped that there would not need to be a crew change at Rugby which is causing a problem at present on the LTV to Euston Sunday service. Often, trains have to terminate at Rugby ‘due to staff shortages’. This won’t happen if there is the same crew at Crewe all the way down to Euston.”
The meeting, which was held in the House of Commons, came about after the Lichfield MP had criticised the reliability of services operating between Crewe and London Euston, which call at Lichfield Trent Valley.
Mr Fabricant added:
“Steve (Banaghan) admitted there are problems though he claimed that the standard of service since January is steadily improving. There is an industrial dispute with RMT over the Sunday service, but he argued there is no shortage of staff. It is the industrial action causing the problems on Sunday. He also said that the Department of Transport altered the timetable midweek shortly before implementation in December and that has caused problems.
Mr Fabricant was also promised further information from London Midland relating to his complaints.
This meeting is the latest development in Mr Fabricant’s battle to improve rail services and facilities at Lichfield Trent Valley.
Last week we told you how he had raised complaints over the state of disabled facilities at the station, an issue which The Lichfield Blog community has complained to the company about without reply.