Under fire Southern Rail shortlisted for Passengers Matter award

first_imgSouthern Railway is also up for gongs for ‘Involving Young People’ and ‘Involving Diverse Groups’.Passengers have been left furious in recent months, as the operator cancelled around 341 trains a day since July, and have been left battling against numerous days of strike action, which included a five-day walkout in August.Govia Thameslink Railway, which operates the company, cancelled one in every 20 trains (5 per cent) last year, earning the company the worst cancellation record of any train operator over the past six years.Phil Carrington, a Southern commuter from Brighton, East Sussex, said: “If they had any sense they would have said they did not want to be shortlisted.”Regardless of the merits of the award, you would have thought they would realise this is a PR disaster waiting to happen and avoided it like the plague.” Andy Harrowell, community investment manager at Southern, said: “We are focused on putting our stations at the heart of the communities they serve.”Together with Southern Community Rail Partnership (SCRP), we have really been able to make a difference to local communities.”Southern and SCRP are committed to encouraging use of the railway, especially in young people.”The statement came the morning after a protest at Lewes Station, in East Sussex, over the level of service and its effect on commuters getting home. MP for Hove, East Sussex, Peter Kyle has also revealed that rail bosses from both Southern Railway and Network Rail are unable to work out who is responsible for delays amid ‘dysfunction’ on the network.Labour MP Mr Kyle said the dispute was discovered yesterday at a cross-party group he set up and co-chairs to try and solve the problems.He said: “When you look at all the delays on the Southern track at the moment, we know that a third of them are caused by Southern.”We also know that a third are caused by Network Rail, but what we did not know is that there a third of those delays for which there is no explanation.”This is because Southern and Network Rail cannot agree or identify the cause of the delay.”The operator was accused of having the ‘worst train service in Britain’ last year, after it was announced that the 07.29 Brighton to London Victoria service had failed to arrive on time for any of its 240 journeys in 2014.The winners of each category in the ACORP Awards will be announced on September 29 at a ceremony in Southport. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. #TUC16 delegates leaving Brighton hit by Southern Rail delays, hours after calling for railways to be renationalised.— Alan Jones (@AlanJonesPA) September 14, 2016center_img We’ve all spent 2 hours in hot sardine can conditions on a broken down train. Hundreds of standing passengers at wits end @SouthernRailUK— Valerie Shawcross (@ValShawcross) September 12, 2016 Train operator Southern Railway has been shortlisted for a ‘Passengers Matter’ award – despite an on-going union dispute which saw up to a third of trains a day cancelled.The company is embroiled in the long-running disagreement with the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) over plans to change the role of guards on their trains.But, the Association of Community Rail (ACORP) Awards say they will celebrate the operator’s hard work and community dedication, as finalists in three categories which includes ‘Passengers Matter’. Another disgruntled passenger, Lucy Ashton, also from Brighton, added: “Maybe they should ask the people who use their trains what they think.”The awards celebrate unsung heroes and heroines of the community rail world, alongside the hard work and dedication of community projects.Southern said that since last August it has revamped and reinvigorated the process for adopting stations across its wide network, to form station partnerships, “having a huge impact on our communities”.last_img read more

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