MP writes angry letter to Govia chief executive demanding explanation for broken promises and time-table “fiasco”

Govia Thameslink Railway apologises over continued rail disruption

Govia Thameslink Railway apologises over continued rail disruption - Credit: Archant

Huntingdon MP Jonathan Djanogly has written to Govia Thameslink chief executive Charles Horton demanding an explanation for the current time-table “fiasco” at Great Northern services.

Mr Djanogly is angry that despite assurances that a “stable and reliable” temporary time-table would be introduced, he was still receiving complaints that nothing had changed.

“Given the current situation, I would like you to explain why I should now not join the calls demanding the secretary of state immediately remove the Govia franchise,” Mr Djanogly set out in his letter of June 7.

“Although this new time-table was suppose to mean a reduced number of trains would be operating on the line until the permanent time-table could be reintroduced, I was promised that things would improve.”

The MP said within two days of this assurance he continued to received feedback about cancellations, including reports of school children, travelling between Huntingdon and Peterborough, having to wait on the platform for hours.

“I am told that services have been reduced to the point that there is often only one train that then stops at all stations, resulting in unacceptable overcrowing. In many cases this is having a significant impact on family arrangements. This fiasco has reached the point that people are rightly angry at what they see as imcompetence and a failure to demonstrate any organisational resilience in dealing with this issue.”

North West Cambs MP, Shailesh Vara, said he had spoken with transport secretary Chris Grayling to “urge him to do whatever he can to ensure resumption of normal service as quickly as possible”.

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Adding: “This is a hugely important issue that has caused much inconvenience and difficulty to many local people.”

Amid constant cancellations and delays since the new timetable was introduced on May 20, rail firms have repeatedly apologised and cited issues beyond their control for the problems.

A petition calling for Govia to be stripped of its contract has gathered almost 17,000 signatures.