Major turnaround for troubled rail line

A TRAIN track once dubbed the “Misery Line” for its frequent problems has completed a remarkable U-turn by achieving prestigious national rail status.The Government's rail minister Tom Harris yesterday announced that the Gainsborough Line service between Sudbury and Marks Tey had been given community rail status.

A TRAIN track once dubbed the “Misery Line” for its frequent problems has completed a remarkable U-turn by achieving prestigious national rail status.

The Government's rail minister Tom Harris yesterday announced that the Gainsborough Line service between Sudbury and Marks Tey had been given community rail status.

The decision, coming little more than 10 years after the troubled rail line was hit by constant complaints, now allows rail operator One a more flexible approach.

Dominic Booth, One managing director, said: “We have worked effectively with the community rail partnership to improve services and involve the local community over recent years. This logical step will enable to us to build on that momentum and further enhance the role of this important community rail line.”


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In the 1990s, the track, which links the rest of the UK rail network to Essex and Suffolk, earned the tag of “Misery Line” following delays, breakdowns and ageing stock.

But a series of improvements turned fortunes around and figures revealed it as one of the best performing in the country.

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