East Midlands Trains boss pledges future of Norwich services

A train boss has pledged the company's commitment to the future of its services out of Norwich.

During a question and answer session at Chapelfield Methodist Church, the managing director of East Midlands Trains, David Horne, revealed that the Norwich to Liverpool line had seen a 20pc increase in passenger numbers over the past three years and its punctuality had improved from 82pc in 2008 to 90.5pc this year.

He also said passenger satisfaction had improved from 72pc in spring 2008 to 86pc this year.

The increase was put down to improvements made on the services, including the quality and punctuality of trains.

Mr Horne also highlighted how the company hopes to improve services further by cutting travel times and keeping down costs.

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'We are very keen to see the route develop, not just be maintained. Apart from anything, the number of people using the route is growing every year,' said Mr Horne.

'The route has got a very bright future. It provides vital direct journeys across key cities and that's an important thing for us to remember. We are looking to make modest improvements on the line and we do need to work harder to secure major transformation on the route.'

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Mr Horne told the meeting, which was organised by the Railfuture East Anglia Branch, that the route between Norwich and Liverpool was below average in terms of passenger numbers within East Midlands Trains' services, but that the service saw 67,000 people travel between Norwich and Peterborough last year. Meanwhile, 30,000 people travelled to Nottingham, 20,000 to Manchester and 9,000 travelled the 250-mile trip to Liverpool.

A �10m refurbishment of the fleet of trains on the route was completed in June 2010 and last year an evening service between Norwich and Nottingham was added.

An extra Norwich to Nottingham Sunday service will be added this December and next year signalling around Nottingham will be improved, leading to a six-week disruption, but some rail time improvements.

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