Beleaguered rail operator Govia Thameslink Railway has announced a special compensation scheme payment equivalent to the cost of up to four weeks’ travel for passengers worst hit by train chaos.
Beleaguered rail operator Govia Thameslink Railway has announced a special compensation scheme payment equivalent to the cost of up to four weeks' travel for passengers worst hit by train chaos.
Services through Huntingdon and St Neots have been affected by cancellations, trains failing to arrive and late journeys since GTR introduced a radical new timetable in May.
The money will go to qualifying season ticket holders, according to the level of disruption they have experienced on Thameslink and Great Northern services.
Refunds will be the equivalent to the cost of one week or four week's travel, according to the amount of disruption and subject to qualifying criteria.
The scheme, funded by the rail industry, including GTR, is in recognition of the amount of disruption which has been caused by the “failure” of the new timetable.
It has been set up in agreement with the Department for Transport.
GTR chief operating officer Nick Brown said: “I am deeply sorry for the disruption which the rail industry is working very hard to fix.
“This compensation is offered in addition to our usual Delay Repay compensation for journey delays of 15 minutes or more and enhanced compensation for season tickets holders.”
He added: “We will shortly provide full details of the industry compensation scheme including eligibility criteria and claims advice.”
GTR said it was working with the DfT to make the full details of the scheme available within a week, including a full list of qualifying stations, eligibility details and claims advice.
Great Northern's routes include services between Kings Cross and Peterborough which call at Huntingdon and St Neots.
Anne Hall, a regular commuter from St Neots, said: “As regards the compensation, I will believe it when I see it. To my knowledge no details have been received as to how we will get this. Personally I would much rather have a reliable and stress free service.
“At the same time if the present situation continues which I believe it is likely to do, owing to the fact that some drivers will be taking holidays towards the end of July and August, if there is no improvement by the end of August I would expect commuters to be reimbursed the equivalent of two months on their season ticket, rather than one.”
Mrs Hall said that on a recent train home passengers were left in temperatures of 85 degrees plus since the airconditioning was not functioning and some threatened to break windows to get air.