RAIL operator Greater Anglia has added its voice for calls for extra tracks to be added to lines in Essex to speed up the main line to London.

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It has responded to the five-year plan put forward by Network Rail outlining what investment it sees as necessary on the region’s rail lines.

The plan has to be accepted by the government’s Office of Rail Regulation before it can be implemented and get funding from the Department for Transport.

Network Rail has proposed spending £1.4 billion upgrading the Great Eastern Main Line as part of a £2.2bn investment in the whole region – but does not propose building any extra lines to the north of Chelmsford before 2019.

Greater Anglia said it wanted to see additional, tangible progress made on the Great Eastern line before 2019.

The company has played a major role in developing the East Anglian Rail Prospectus (which was published last year) and helping to create a broad alliance of stakeholders to support the aspirations it outlines.

Ruud Haket, managing director at Greater Anglia, said: “At Greater Anglia we are passionate about delivering a better and continuously improving rail service for East Anglia.

“We are already doing what we can in the short term to upgrade services, but this is a vital chance for us all to try and secure the additional infrastructure enhancements on the GEML and West Anglia routes we all wish to see, sooner rather than later – to the benefit of customers, communities and the economy across our region.

“We will be responding to the ORR’s consultation and proposing that a commitment to the delivery of these key improvements by 2019 is included in the final approved Strategic Business Plan agreed by the ORR later in 2013.”

The company’s move was welcomed by Ipswich MP Ben Gummer, who has been helping to lead calls by East Anglian parliamentarians for a boost to the service.

He said: “This is a valuable contribution from Greater Anglia, which demonstrates once again that we are all aiming for the same goal – as outlined in our prospectus published last year.

“We are making progress and the contribution of the current operator can only help.”

3 comments

  • Howabout a bit more effort from Greater Anglia in improving their existing services? A recent litany of broken down trains, only half of my seat reservations have been honoured over the last month and severe overcrowding on the 6.42 from Cambridge to Ipswich (photo enclosed) months after GA have promised to 'look' at the problem. Booking office at Stowmarket closed during peak time (I can hear the staff talking behind the blinds!) and only one machine working forcing people to cough up penalty fares. Just pick your game up GA.

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    trevorwoolnough

    Monday, January 28, 2013

  • Why are you being charged penalty fares? If you couldnt buy a ticket before the journey started the guard on the train should just charge you for the journey made. Thats what they do on the main line to London..... As for the broken down trains - a lot of them are freight trains (not GA responsibility). This is why we need more tracks so trains can be diverted round problems far quicker.

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    dbr

    Monday, January 28, 2013

  • but in the short to medium term, we need reliable trains (GA as well! I was stuck on a broken down GA train for over an hour last week) and staff prepared to make an effort.

    Report this comment

    trevorwoolnough

    Tuesday, January 29, 2013

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