Season ticket holders, on West Midlands Railway (WMR) and London Northwestern Railway (LNR) services, will not have to pay the upcoming national fares rise. West Midlands Trains (WMT) has announced a discount on season tickets that more than covers the annual 2.8% increase.
Following a drop in train performance since May, WMT pledged to compensate passengers and have now announced this measure will take the form of a 3% reduction in the cost of weekly, monthly and annual season tickets, offsetting the upcoming national fares rise on Thursday 2 January 2020.
Jan Chaudhry-van der Velde, managing director of West Midlands Trains, which operates WMR and LNR services, said: “ In recognition of the poor performance, this compensation package is for our regular customers when they renew their season tickets will offset the national fares rise.
"We have said for some time now that performance and timekeeping since the May 2019 timetable has not been good enough. The timetable added too much complexity which means that even minor delays transmit through the network. Some changes were made in the December 2019 timetable change to remove the complexity, and to add capacity, but the most significant changes to reintroduce simplicity will be implemented in the May 2020 timetable. I apologise again to customers for the poor performance and cancellations since May.
"As well as the timetable simplification in May, 2020 will also see the arrival of the first of our new trains, boosting capacity on our diesel services in the West Midlands."
In recognition that poor performance has affected more than just season ticket holders, there will be a summer ticket promotion that will be announced in due course.
These compensation packages are in addition to the £2.5million West Midlands Trains has paid in Delay Repay claims since May 2019.
Earlier this month, the train company began operating a new simplified timetable designed to reduce delays and cancellations. It also introduced 16 additional carriages to create more capacity. A further 24 carriages will be added in the first few months of 2020.
Notes to Editors
- The 3% reduction for weekly, monthly and annual season ticket holders will apply for a 12-month period starting on Thursday 2 January 2020.
- Any passengers who purchased an annual season ticket on or after Sunday 15 December 2019 will also be able to reclaim the discount.
- The discount will apply for 365 days from the purchase of the season ticket
About West Midlands Trains
For further information on this release, call our press office on 03300 955150 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
West Midlands Trains operates both West Midlands Railway and London Northwestern Railway services.
- London Northwestern Railway services operate between Liverpool and Birmingham, and on the West Coast mainline to and from London Euston.
- West Midlands Railway services operate to destinations across the West Midlands via Birmingham New Street.
The West Midlands Trains franchise started on 10 December 2017 and will run until 2025/26.
West Midlands Trains operates 1,300 services a day, manages 150 stations and provides over 70 million passenger journeys a year. Over the course of the franchise, West Midlands Trains will be investing £1 billion into the rail network to deliver new trains, improved routes and station upgrades. This will include 400 new train carriages across the network and space for an extra 85,000 passengers into Birmingham and London at peak times.
The franchise is a joint venture between Abellio (70.1% share) and East Japan Railway Company / Mitsui & Co., Ltd (29.9% share in a 50:50 split). Abellio is the international passenger transport subsidiary of the Dutch national railway company, Nederlandse Spoorwegen. In the UK, Abelllio operates ScotRail and Greater Anglia train services, Merseyrail services in a joint venture with Serco and buses through Abellio London. For more information visit www.abellio.com
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