Rail passengers are being reminded to check their train times, as major changes are introduced across the rail network this weekend.
West Midlands Railway is implementing a new timetable from Sunday (19 May), bringing improvements for passengers across the Shropshire and the wider region.
Passengers will benefit for more seats and extra services between Shrewsbury, Telford, Wolverhampton and Birmingham New Street. The changes will benefit passengers travelling for both work and leisure – including those using rail services during evenings and weekends.
Announcements to remind passengers about the changes can now be heard at railway stations, with timetables available from ticket offices or to download from the West Midlands Railway website.
Events have also been held at stations and on trains across the network to give passengers a chance to speak to senior managers about the upcoming changes. Similar events are also scheduled for the coming weeks, to help gather feedback on the new timetable.
Some of the improvements being introduced for Shropshire passengers include:
- Two trains per hour on weekdays and Saturdays, between Shrewsbury, Wolverhampton and Birmingham New Street. The additional service that will operate each hour will call at Shrewsbury, Wellington, Telford, Shifnal, Codsall, Wolverhampton and Birmingham New Street – reducing journey times for many passengers.
- Additional carriages for the services brought to the route from the Chase line in Staffordshire, where over £100m of electrification work has recently been completed.
- Earlier morning and later evening services operating between Shropshire and the West Midlands. Passengers will be able to arrive into Wolverhampton from 0615 and Birmingham from 0640 from Monday to Saturday. Trains to Shrewsbury will also continue to depart Birmingham until around 2230 on weekdays and 2300 on Saturdays.
- A new hourly Sunday service calling at stations between Shrewsbury and Birmingham. This will replace the current two-hourly service frequency on the line. Sunday services will arrive into Birmingham New Street from 0930, with the final service departing just before 2200.
- Additional calls at Penkridge on Birmingham New Street – Liverpool Lime Street route, to give the station a half hourly service on weekdays and Saturdays. With many of these trains will also continue through to London Euston or Birmingham Airport, enabling passengers to connect with a wider range of direct, long-distance services.
Richard Brooks, customer experience director for West Midlands Railway, said: “The timetable improvements being introduced this weekend will bring a range of benefits to passengers, with more direct services to destinations across our network and improved capacity on some of our busiest services.
“To accommodate these enhancements, there will be alterations to train times, carriage formations and the platforming of some services at busier stations. Therefore, we are advising all passengers to plan ahead for next week and to check the details of their journey. This is particularly important for those who travel regularly and are used to relying on a particular service everyday.
“We also want to make sure people are aware of how they can benefit from new opportunities to travel by train for both work and leisure. With additional earlier, later and weekend services operating direct to more destinations, the new timetable is good news for passengers across the region.”
Passengers can plan ahead using journey planning systems and are advised to go to westmidlandsrailway.co.uk for more information.
The train operator will also be introducing a further major timetable change in two years time, where passengers will see additional benefits from the introduction of new trains onto the network, which when fully operational, will increase capacity by 25%.
About West Midlands Trains
For further information on this release, call our press office on 03300 955150 or email email@example.com
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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