James discusses Southeastern with Transport Secretary

James Brokenshire has discussed plans to deliver improved reliability for train services in Bexley with the Transport Secretary Chris Grayling.

The Transport Secretary has announced plans to see that train operating companies and Network Rail (which operates and maintains the track and signalling) work in an integrated way to deliver greater reliability and a more passenger focussed railway. The Transport Secretary has also said that he wants to partner with Transport for London to design the new contract to run trains on the Southeastern line and to learn from and harness the experiences of the London Overground.

Commenting James said:

"For some considerable time I've underlined the need for fresh thinking on how we run local rail services to deliver a much more reliable and punctual service for passengers. I've also emphasised the need to learn from and apply the experience of the London Overground which has seen a significant uplift in performance.

"From my own discussions with Transport for London, one of the critical aspects of the success of the London Overground was the alignment of effort between the private company which runs the trains and the body responsible for looking after the track and signals. That's precisely what is at the heart of Chris Grayling announcement today and why I support his proposals.

"Transport for London now need to get behind this plan and work with the Department for Transport to design the new contract for our local rail services. The door is open to TfL to help deliver the improvements in train services that we all want to see.

"Following on from my discussions with Network Rail last week I also told the Transport Secretary that we shouldn't wait for the new contract in 2018. We should put in place joint working arrangements between Network Rail and Southeastern as soon as possible so that passengers can get the benefits at the earliest opportunity."