East Anglia: Commuters get chance to put their views to rail bosses

THERE is still space available at a meeting taking place this Saturday’s which gives rail travellers the chance to put their views to industry bosses.

The event, at the St Nicholas Centre in Ipswich, has been arranged by the town’s MP, Ben Gummer, who has persuaded the bosses of Network Rail, current train operator National Express East Anglia and new franchise holder Abellio, to answer the concerns of passengers.

The meeting is being held between noon and 2pm and Mr Gummer has asked anyone planning to attend to let his office know so there is some idea of the number of people in the audience.

Anyone hoping to attend the meeting is asked to e-mail ben@bengummer.com

The meeting will take place just two weeks before Abellio takes over the regional franchise from National Express East Anglia – running trains under the “Greater Anglia” branding.

Mr Gummer said: “Time and time again I hear from regular rail users in Ipswich their frustration at not being able to talk to Network Rail, who are responsible for many of the delays on the line.

“I have been forceful in putting these issues to Sir David Higgins, the chief executive of Network Rail, but I wanted to ensure that Network Rail faced my constituents themselves.

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“Network Rail has some good plans to do better and it should have an opportunity to explain these to commuters.

“But it is also important that it takes responsibility when it lets down passengers and listens to their frustrations.

“I hope that this meeting will go some way towards starting a true dialogue between commuters and the companies that run their rail service.”

Mr Gummer and other MPs from across East Anglia have backed a campaign by the four daily newspapers covering the region, including the East Anglian Daily Times, for improved rail services.

The On the Right Tracks? campaign was backed by MPs from Suffolk and Norfolk in an open letter demanding better rail services between East Anglia and the capital.