Passengers slam Greater Anglia for 'cramming' passengers onto trains with missing carriages
PUBLISHED: 16:53 12 November 2019 | UPDATED: 16:53 12 November 2019
Rail passengers have slammed Greater Anglia for forcing commuters to "cram" into aisles and corridors, due to trains running with missing carriages,
On Monday more than 50 trains in the region were listed as running with reduced carriages on the Greater Anglia website, including the intercity service between Norwich and London Liverpool Street.
Russel Whitehair, who lives in Colchester but regularly uses the rail network to travel between Norwich and London, said the shorter trains were making journeys unbearable for passengers.
He said: "These formation changes cause a huge amount of anguish and stress to passengers. They cram people into trains much shorter than they should be. Greater Anglia should be concerned about passengers getting to their destination on a clean and comfortable service. At the moment they are not delivering that."
According to the train company, the missing carriages are undergoing maintenance work in Leeds, and will be returning to service in the near future.
A spokesman said: "Some intercity carriages have had to go away for heavy maintenance work, so some intercity trains may be one carriage shorter than usual and, where needed, we will operate the service with a different type of train rather than cancel a service.
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"We are sorry for any inconvenience caused and would like to reassure passengers that this is a temporary measure until the current intercity carriages return from works."
As well as frustration over missing carriages, passengers travelling from London to Norwich said intercity trains were being replaced by 'sliding door' trains on an almost daily basis, which lack a buffet car and full first class carriage.
Andrea Marshall, who lives in Norwich and travels to the capital for work most weeks, said the 17.50 London Liverpool Street train was one of the worst-hit services.
She said: "It's a bizarre decision to replace the intercity train with this other model considering this is a peak time service. Often times aisles and corridors are full of disgruntled passengers forced to stand for half the journey."
A Greater Anglia spokesman said: "The 'sliding door' trains have a similar number of seats to the intercity trains, but they are fitted in a different layout with fewer first class seats. They do have Wi-Fi, but they do not have on-board catering. We always seek to advise customers before they board if there is a change to the scheduled train."
Greater Anglia has started to roll out 169 new trains across the region which will replace their current models, as part of a £1.4 billion investment.
Some of the new replacements have already been launched on the lines between Norwich, Great Yarmouth, Lowestoft and now Cambridge and Greater Anglia have said they will continue to roll them out "thick and fast".