“Chelmsford Commuters must get the real improvements we need.” Chelmsford train users have suffered delays and over crowding for many years. This has to stop. Thanks to the work of the Conservative MPs for Chelmsford, Colchester, Ipswich and Norwich and the Great Eastern Main Line Task Force there are significant plans under construction.
These include the £1.4billion upgrade of all rolling stock is due come on line from 2019 to 2020. This will significantly reduce the number of delays due to the old and obsolete trains and carriages which regularly break down, and will deliver a 40% increase in seats. There will be free high quality WiFi on all new and refurbished trains, and at every station
I continue to campaign for the delivery of a new railway station at Beaulieu Park. This is a long promised vital resource for those living nearby and will also significantly reduce road traffic coming into Chelmsford.
I continue to fight for improvements to the Delay/Repay scheme as it is important that commuters are compensated when there are delays and that the train operators and Network Rail are held to account.
Rail Users Public Meeting Update
In May 2018, I held a public meeting for Chelmsford rail commuters with the bosses of Greater Anglia and Network Rail as well as representatives of Chelmsford City Council and Essex County Council. I want to thank everyone who attended the meeting and to the many people who couldn’t come but submitted questions in advance.
Here is some of the key information we were given.
Weekend Works – the weekend works due to Cross Rail are now nearly complete. There will be no weekend works over the summer and rest of this year apart from the August Bank Holiday, some work in November and over the Christmas/New Year period. Season ticket holders will be able to use the C2C over Christmas/New Year.
New Trains – The first of the new trains are in production now. These will be rolled out over two years starting next May. There will be over 1,000 new carriages which will have many more seats and WiFi & charging sockets will be much better than on retrofitted carriages.
Late Services – Extra staff are being allocated to journeys where it has been highlighted that passengers sometimes experience rowdy behaviour. The slow pace of late services is often due to engineers working on adjacent tracks, which should be improving soon as works due to Cross Rail are nearly finished.
Ticketing – A new consultation on simplifying ticketing has just been launched a please do feed in comments about ticket options, for further information use the link here . To register for the consultation you can click on the link here .
Communications – at present, if there is an issue on the line, each driver needs to be notified individually of what is happening. Greater Anglia are looking at ways to improve this.
Part-Time Commuters – Greater Anglia are going to launch a new “carnet” style ticket by the end of the year. This will be for people who travel often but are not full time commuters.
Tickets made easier – GA are looking into an “Oyster Card” type product.
Delay Repay – GA have asked the government to amend the franchise so they can offer 15 minute delay/repay.
Beaulieu Park Station – The County and City council intend to submit the final bid for funding of the second railway station around the end of this year. It will be a three platform, three line design so non-stopping trains can pass stoppers at this station. Once the money is committed it is possible for Network Rail to build faster.
Bike Storage – New key fobs for the indoor bike store will be available within the next four weeks.
Thank you to all those who helped organise this meeting and to everyone who wrote to me about this very important issue.
Essex Live wrote a live blog of the meeting, here is the link: