MPs discuss overcrowding on Chiltern’s trains


The meeting was told Chiltern are trying to secure more trains

The issue of overcrowding on Chiltern train services has been raised by MPs at a meeting with the Transport Secretary.

Banbury’s MP, Victoria Prentis, represented train users in our area at the meeting with Mark Harper.

The meeting was told that Chiltern Railways have a plan to lease additional trains for their fleet and to increase their capacity.

Mrs Prentis emphasised the need for these trains to be entered into service as quickly as possible.

She said: “I was pleased that the Transport Secretary listened to our concerns and understood the urgency of the situation.   I am reassured that he is going to support Chiltern as they navigate the procurement process to secure new trains.

“I know how important Chiltern services are to so many of my constituents who rely on them for getting to work, school and important appointments.   I will continue to work with my colleagues, Chiltern and the Department for Transport to get additional trains operating on our routes as soon as possible.”

Chiltern Railways weren’t at the meeting.

Members of the Banbury FM team have witnessed scenes at Banbury train station where mid-morning services to London have arrived already full, with customers on the platform advised to wait for a later service.

Chiltern Railways issued a statement on overcrowding last year, noting the average age of their fleet of trains was thirty years old – the oldest in the country.   They said this meant the need for maintenance and repairs was higher than they would like and industrial action had caused delays in their maintenance programmes.

The operator said it was attempting to acquire trains that are currently unused elsewhere on the rail network, but this required government approval.   Last year’s statement by Chiltern added they have been working on modernising their fleet with the Department for Transport since 2021.

Published: by Banbury FM Newsteam

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