Today Ellie Reeves (MP for Lewisham West and Penge), Janet Daby (MP for Lewisham East) and I have written a joint letter to Southeastern Railways about the delays and cancellations our constituents have been facing since the new timetable was introduced in September.

You can read the letter in full below.

Dear Mr Steve White,

On 28th September, Southeastern released their December timetable changes. These changes came in with no consultation, cooperation or engagement. This was disappointing to see; however, after a meeting of senior members of the Customer Relations Team I was given assurances that these changes would lead to an efficient and reliable service across the network.

Today I am writing, along with the other two Members of Parliament for the London Borough of Lewisham, to express our concern and share the views of constituents who are facing daily delays and cancellations since the implementation of the December timetable. We believe rail timetables need to be reliable, well organised and best serve the public who use them. Currently, this is simply not happening.

We recognise the impact the pandemic has had in the way public transportation is used and placed major challenges on train operators and their timetables. However, the lack of reliability inevitably leads residents to seek alternative routes and work from home more frequently. During our meeting, you stated that one of the main benefits of the new timetable was to improve reliability and punctuality. However, the significant disruption to services in the last four weeks has been completely unacceptable. On Thursday 19th of January 2023, every Hayes Line train was delayed between 6:14am and 9:14am, the morning rush hour. This is repeated most week days and is now what residents come to expect from your service. It has become apparent that you have not put in place the operational changes that improve overall punctuality nor are you providing a reliable service for passengers.

In addition, while we accept that this past month has seen industrial action across our rail network, and we recognise the impact this has had on you as a rail operator; we do not consider this to be a valid reason for the regular delays and cancellations constituents are reporting, even in weeks where no strike action is taking place.

We would be grateful if you could outline the reasons for these delays and cancellations and outline the steps you are taking to improve the service commuters are receiving.

Best wishes,
Ellie Reeves MP
Janet Daby MP
Vicky Foxcroft MP

Screenshot of Vicky, Ellie and Janet
Screenshot of Vicky, Ellie and Janet's letter to Southeastern
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