At last! High speed train service delivering Norwich to London in 90 minutes will soon begin
- Credit: Sonya Duncan
Rail passengers will finally be able to travel between Norwich and London in just 90 minutes this spring.
Train operator Greater Anglia is introducing four extra services between Norwich, Ipswich and London Liverpool Street from May to speed up travel.
Fastest journey times between Norwich and London will be cut to an hour-and-a-half, while it will take just 55 to 57 minutes to travel between Ipswich and the capital on the extra services.
Jamie Burles, Greater Anglia managing director said: 'For many years, stakeholders, including MPs and businesses, have been calling for faster journey times between East Anglia and London and now we're launching the first quicker services with our new May timetable.
'Faster journey times and thousands of extra seats will provide a boost to people who live and work in East Anglia, as well as supporting the regional economy.'
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The first of the faster services are due to come into service on Monday, May 20.
The 90-minute services will depart from Norwich at 9am and 5pm, Monday to Saturday, and will call at Ipswich at 9.33am and 5.33pm.
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Meanwhile the London Liverpool Street service departs at 11am and 7pm, Monday to Saturday, and calls at Ipswich at 11.55am and 7.57pm.
Greater Anglia said it will shave 12 minutes off the current fastest journey between Norwich and London and cut the fastest journey between Ipswich and London by four minutes.
Mr Burles said: 'These improvements will be followed in the summer by the first of our brand-new trains coming into service.'
Extra summer services will run on the Norwich-Ipswich-Colchester-London Liverpool Street, Norwich-Lowestoft, Ipswich-Peterborough, Ipswich-Felixstowe, and Norwich-Great Yarmouth routes, when the new timetable comes in on May 19.
Other changes introduced in May include some slightly quicker Sunday services between Norwich and London and some minor changes to the weekday timings of evening rush hour services to Clacton, Manningtree and Ipswich.
Norwich North MP Chloe Smith, who has been campaigning for better rail services since 2013, said she was 'delighted' with the news.
She said: 'It is a good start to have some faster journeys per day. But there's more to do. I want all of the Norwich to London services to be 90 minutes.
'If we can have a faster, more reliable service on every journey then we can improve people's everyday lives while also providing the capacity for the future and bringing thousands more jobs to Norwich. So I'll continue campaigning for constituents on this.'
Nova Fairbank, head of policy for Norfolk Chambers of Commerce, said: 'Norfolk businesses are looking forward to welcoming the commencement of the Norwich in 90 service four times per day. 'Regular, faster journey times between Norwich and London will clearly demonstrate that our region is 'open for business' and easily accessible.
'Faster trains could open up more business opportunities and attract more firms to our region.
'This will help create more jobs and will support further economic growth for Norfolk.'