General Election 2017: St Albans Lib Dems support short-term Government takeover of Thameslink services
PUBLISHED: 10:35 26 May 2017 | UPDATED: 14:48 26 May 2017
An emergency takeover of railway services through St Albans to end commuter disruption has been pledged by the Lib Dems if they win power in June's General Election.
St Albans candidate Daisy Cooper is supporting her party manifesto’s call for a short-term Government intervention into the running of Govia Thameslink.
The manifesto proposes the Department of Transport temporarily taking over Thameslink to help rectify the problems commuters have faced with delays and disruption to train services.
Daisy said: “The unbelievable levels of disruption on Govia Thameslink have inflicted misery on thousands of commuters and cost passengers unnecessary stress, time, money and sometimes even their jobs.
“Incredibly, less than half of trains arrive on time and delays from incidents are getting longer. And the poor information on disrupted St Albans services has been due to Govia’s operations centre being all-consumed by the ongoing Southern Rail crisis.
“This is an emergency situation so we are proposing an emergency solution. A tough measure such as this will make it clear to the other companies running rail services that when they fail their customers, they will be sacked too.”
A spokesman for Thameslink said: “Our focus is on improving the service to passengers. The latest performance figures show that every month since December our service delivery levels have improved and so far this month, 85 per cent of our trains are on time.
“We’re determined to continue this by upgrading and modernising our systems and service to address capacity, congestion and punctuality on a network where passenger numbers have doubled in the past two decades.
“To help achieve this, we are working closely with Network Rail on their £300m package to improve reliability across our network.”
You can add your name to Daisy’s ‘Takeover Thameslink’ petition at http://www.stalbanslibdems.org.uk/lib_dems_pledge_emergency_thameslink_takeover