Autumn trains are right on track

UNDER-FIRE train company London Midland has received a much-needed boost after revealing 88 per cent of its services were on time last month.

The figures, which cover the period from October 18 to November 14, are a three per cent increase on the same period last year.

However 91.5 per cent of trains were on time in the previous month.

The train operator, which runs services between Northampton and London Euston, has welcomed the latest figures – particularly as they come at the beginning of the notoriously difficult winter season.

A London Midland spokesman said: "We're working hard to improve our performance and to ensure we provide a consistent level of service to our passengers.

"Performance has improved at London Midland, but we recognise that we still have work to do."

The news comes after the Government reprimanded London Midland bosses earlier this month, ordering them to reduce the number of cancellations.

It also comes amid a flurry of cancellations on the Northampton to London line this week, due to problems with overhead power lines on the track in Hertfordshire.

A special timetable was being implemented yesterday evening as London-bound commuters suffered delays and overcrowded trains.

Shaun Hope, from the Northampton Rail Users Group, said London Midland still had a lot of improvements to make.

He said: "From what I gather, the overall service seems to be okay at the moment but we have a meeting coming up at the beginning of December and we will get a flavour of what people are thinking then, I guess."

He added: "We still have a problem of trains often changing platforms and the information not coming through to the people who need it most – the passengers.

"Things seem to have deteriorated since Silverlink went last year and since London Midland took over at the beginning of last year."

Robin Gisby, director of operations at Network Rail, added: "Today's results are encouraging and are the result of the industry investing heavily in technology to lessen the impact of autumn."

The Northampton Rail Users Group meets at the Guildhall on Saturday, December 5, at 10am.