Stephen McPartland MP has been working with East Coast to stop them from reducing services at Stevenage.
Stephen said, “I am pleased the negotiation has been successful for both Stevenage and East Coast, as it is important we work well with our partners and develop constructive relationships. I am delighted that the East Coast ticket office will remain open at Stevenage station and we have secured extra services to Lincoln and York and an evening train going to Newcastle, subject to confirmation from Network Rail.
Stephen added, “The extra services are great news for local people and businesses as Stevenage continues to take a leading role in helping our economy recover. I have been impressed with the courteous and businesslike manner of East Coast under Elaine Holt's leadership.”
Chairman of East Coast Elaine Holt said: “East Coast has listened to the views of customers and stakeholders across the 920-mile East Coast route as it has consulted upon and developed a ground-breaking new timetable, which will be introduced 20th May 2011. This has included a very constructive and on-going dialogue with Mr McPartland in his role as the MP for Stevenage and, previously, in his role as a representative of the local rail user group.
Elaine explained, “In an earlier draft of the timetable, which East Coast published last year, weekday services to Stevenage were slightly reduced. However, having listened to the views of customers and stakeholders, including Mr McPartland, East Coast now plans to actually increase, not reduce, the number of weekday services that stop at Stevenage by 18 per day, from 40 per day now to 58 services per day from May. This will bring more than 9,000 additional seats each week day for rail travellers to Stevenage.”
Elaine concluded, “It reflects East Coast’s commitment to serving the town and positively contributing to its prosperity. East Coast is also strengthening direct journeys from Stevenage to Yorkshire with an additional 11 services per week day to and from Leeds. Good connections will help maintain East Coast journeys between Stevenage and North East England and Scotland, where there is less demand for direct links.”