Have your say on improving rail network

Network Rail is holding a consultation on radical proposals which could drastically alter the way the railways are planned and run.

They are inviting rail-users to make their views know and give them feedback with a January 31 deadline for comments.

‘Improving Connectivity’ is a long-term proposal to deliver substantially improved rail connectivity across Britain.

Network Rail says it requires a different approach to planning both the network capability and the train services which operate on it.

The consultation document looks at major changes in infrastructure including providing additional platforms at stations and improving key hub stations to improve journey times.

Managing Director for Passengers Services for the Ministry of Transport Peter Wilkinson said: “Passenger numbers have been steadily increasing year by year by five percent or more, even during the recession.

“The growth makes it more challenging to keep improving the service as key rail corridors throughout the country are nearing capacity.

“It makes it vital to investigate new and innovative approaches to planning in order to make sure we are using our network in the best way to meet the needs of passenger and freight markets.

“A timetable that promotes more efficient connections between our regions is an essential ingredient in our ambition to put the needs of railway users first.

“The consultation is taking place now in order to gain feedback and understand what appetite exists for developing this approach further.”

The study comes at a time when the Charing Cross line is suffering disruption due to no trains stopping at London Bridge and poor connections at Ashford Station are causing problems for Rye commuters.

To take part in the network Rail survey email improvingconnectivity@networkrail.co.uk .