East Midlands Trains

Department for Transport written question – answered on 21st December 2017.

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Photo of Baroness Randerson Baroness Randerson Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Transport)

To ask Her Majesty's Government why fast East Midlands Trains services between Bedford and Luton and St Pancras will cease during rush hours from May 2018; and what assessment they have made of the impact of those changes on the number of people using the railways.

Photo of Baroness Sugg Baroness Sugg Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)

A new Thameslink timetable will be introduced from May 2018, which will increase the current provision of services to 18 trains per hour, and then gradually increase to 24 trains per hour by December 2019. The industry has, and continues, to work closely to develop timetables that maximise capacity, however this fundamentally means trying to fit more trains on the same amount of track. Some temporary changes have therefore been made to the May 2018 East Midlands Trains timetable until the completion of the Midland Main Line upgrade programme in 2020 which will mean peak-time services will no longer call at Bedford or Luton. The relevant operators are working to identify how a suitable balance between fast and stopping services can be provided from these locations during this period.

The changes are estimated to impact those travelling from the North to Bedford (120 passengers) and Luton (85 passengers) and for commuter passengers into London from Bedford (1500 passengers) and Luton (500 passengers) per day. The commuter passengers will of course be able to transfer onto Govia Thameslink Railway trains.

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