Nick Ferrari challenges rail campaign group chief over timetable disruptions

16 December 2019, 08:37

Nick Ferrari challenged the chief of a rail campaign group over the new train timetables which have reportedly led to disruptions across the country.

Nick asked Bruce Williamson, from the campaign group Railfuture which promotes better rail services, whether this timetable was "as big a Christmas turkey as it appears."

Mr Williamson referenced the "fiasco" a year and a half ago where the train timetable change went "disastrously wrong" and said, "I think the rail industry did learn some lessons from that."

He said there are "hiccups" with the new timetable but it's "possibly not as bad as you might like to believe."

Nick said he was going by the reports such as the West Country having to provide buses from Exeter to Paddington, and quoted problems in South Wales, Greater Anglia, West Midlands and Hertfordshire.

"I appreciate you didn't put this together but it doesn't seem a great starting day," he said.

Mr Willliamson admitted it does not, "Hopefully on day two some of the hiccups will be dying down and it won't be as bad as it was yesterday."

Nick asked whether these changes are necessary.

"Yes, particularly on the Great Western line," Mr Williamson said, "we've got these super duper new inter-city express trains which have better acceleration so can do better journey times. If you want to take advantage of new trains you've got to put a new timetable in."