Improved rail service for Hartlebury passengers

Kidderminster Shuttle: Green flag: MP Peter Luff waves off the first train of an improved rail service for Hartlebury. Green flag: MP Peter Luff waves off the first train of an improved rail service for Hartlebury.

A REVISED timetable for London Midland trains will give Hartlebury passengers their most frequent rail service in nearly 50 years.

Mid-Worcestershire MP Peter Luff led the celebrations at Hartlebury train station yesterday as he waved off the 9.19am service to Whitlocks End.

The new timetable includes an hourly service between Worcester and Birmingham Snow Hill.

Mr Luff was joined by Hartlebury residents, senior managers from London Midland, Wychavon District Council chairman Gerry O'Donnell and representatives from the Stourbridge Line User Group and Cotswold Line Promotion Group, who worked together to successfully campaign to bring back the service.

Terry Oliver, London Midland’s head of Snow Hill services, said: “We are committed to providing quality journeys for everyone and I’m really pleased that we have been able to modify the timetable to provide a much improved service for the people of Hartlebury."

Hartlebury residents, who applauded as the train pulled into the station for an extended three-minute stop, were given complimentary passes for a day’s free travel on the service.

Stourbridge Line User Group chairman Rob Hebron said: "I am delighted that London Midland has decided to provide an enhanced service for Hartlebury.

"We have persistently requested this improvement and they have delivered. Not only is Hartlebury accessible throughout the day but the village is now plugged into the London Midland network, which is of considerable size.

"It makes sense to fully utilise this station which is an ideal rail head for Stourport. If passengers support this service, as I believe they will, I'm sure London Midland will develop it further."

Comments (8)

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1:05pm Tue 10 Dec 13

Bcfc1186 says...

I wonder if MP Peter Luff realises what a terrible service London Midland provide?
I wonder if MP Peter Luff realises what a terrible service London Midland provide? Bcfc1186

6:24pm Tue 10 Dec 13

bobcommuter says...

This report is about a service improvement and The Shuttle should be commended for covering it, it's so easy for the media to only report bad news. We at the Stourbridge Line User Group have worked very hard over many years on this issue and now there is a result. If you have any particular issues about train service provision please join us, we do complain about the stuff they get wrong. I had a conversation with Peter Luff at the event and I can assure you he is passionate about rail service provision which is why he very quickly accepted our invitation to the event yesterday.

Regards

Bob Randle
This report is about a service improvement and The Shuttle should be commended for covering it, it's so easy for the media to only report bad news. We at the Stourbridge Line User Group have worked very hard over many years on this issue and now there is a result. If you have any particular issues about train service provision please join us, we do complain about the stuff they get wrong. I had a conversation with Peter Luff at the event and I can assure you he is passionate about rail service provision which is why he very quickly accepted our invitation to the event yesterday. Regards Bob Randle bobcommuter

10:55pm Tue 10 Dec 13

MarkAM says...

I know it's very easy to sit and whinge about how it could be better, but as someone who has relied on the Kidderminster - Birmingham line every weekday for over 13 years can I just say that yes, there has been a very definite improvement. It would be delusional to try and claim the service is perfect, but it is a heck of a lot better than at any other time I've used it.

To all involved thank you for the hard work, and I look forward to further improvements in the near future :)
I know it's very easy to sit and whinge about how it could be better, but as someone who has relied on the Kidderminster - Birmingham line every weekday for over 13 years can I just say that yes, there has been a very definite improvement. It would be delusional to try and claim the service is perfect, but it is a heck of a lot better than at any other time I've used it. To all involved thank you for the hard work, and I look forward to further improvements in the near future :) MarkAM

9:22am Wed 11 Dec 13

Bcfc1186 says...

Of course he quickly accpeted your invitation, do you know any MP that would declince an opportunity to get their face in the paper?

The trains are delayed every single day, sometimes by only a few minutes - but this can make a big difference to people who have connections to make.

I have travelled with London Midland every weekday for 4 years, the service was awful when I started and equally as awful now - yet the price has risen massively.

If you are happy with the the service they provide then clearly your time is not as important to you as mine is to me.
Of course he quickly accpeted your invitation, do you know any MP that would declince an opportunity to get their face in the paper? The trains are delayed every single day, sometimes by only a few minutes - but this can make a big difference to people who have connections to make. I have travelled with London Midland every weekday for 4 years, the service was awful when I started and equally as awful now - yet the price has risen massively. If you are happy with the the service they provide then clearly your time is not as important to you as mine is to me. Bcfc1186

4:34pm Thu 12 Dec 13

bobcommuter says...

Having spent 38 years commuting and buisness travelling on the rail network I think the previous comment is a little unfair on the incumbent train operator. Yes there are reliability and punctuality issues as there are on all rail routes but please be aware that many of these are down to the infrastructure owner Network Rail and not train operator London Midland. We talk formally to LM on a bi monthly meeting system and thier own performance is top of the agenda.
Please be advised that London Midland will be required to pay Network Rail additional access charges for these stops so they have to take it on the chin if it dont work!

Best Regards
Bob Randle
Stourbridge Line User Group
Having spent 38 years commuting and buisness travelling on the rail network I think the previous comment is a little unfair on the incumbent train operator. Yes there are reliability and punctuality issues as there are on all rail routes but please be aware that many of these are down to the infrastructure owner Network Rail and not train operator London Midland. We talk formally to LM on a bi monthly meeting system and thier own performance is top of the agenda. Please be advised that London Midland will be required to pay Network Rail additional access charges for these stops so they have to take it on the chin if it dont work! Best Regards Bob Randle Stourbridge Line User Group bobcommuter

9:41pm Thu 12 Dec 13

John Herbert Smith says...

People should stop complaining!
The service on the Snow Hill line is excellent.

I commuted regularly from Kidderminster for 7 years from 2002. For the first two years, the service was patchy, constant late running and cancellations. From about 2005, Central Trains had turned it around and the service was right time pretty much every day. When London Midland took over in 2007, there was a noticeable dip in punctuality for about 6 months and then it returned to normal right time arrivals.

Now we have brand new trains, faster journey times and they have finally re-done the timetable to remove Lye, Old Hill and Langley Green stops from Kidderminster trains and spread departures to every 15 minutes.

What needs to be done now?
*A 30 minute journey time to B'ham and 15 min to Worcester need to be aimed for as the current 35 min/ 20 min are far too slow.
*Extension of trains from Worcester to Gloucester, Evesham or Hereford should also be pushed for so Wyre Foresters can reach the CrossCountry network in one change avoiding Birmingham. (Ditto for Dorridge to Leamington Spa.)
*Extension of trains to Foley Park and a parkway station near the Bewdley bypass.
*The doors should be operated by drivers, freeing up the guards to check tickets. In my 7 years commuting my ticket was checked less than weekly. There were regular fare dodgers who only bought a ticket when required. Even paying an occasional penalty fare is cheaper.
*Kidderminster station needs to be bulldozed
*An extra deck should be added to the car park.

Quite a shopping list, and of course we are broke as a Nation, so bits of spending here and there to gradually build up the service.
People should stop complaining! The service on the Snow Hill line is excellent. I commuted regularly from Kidderminster for 7 years from 2002. For the first two years, the service was patchy, constant late running and cancellations. From about 2005, Central Trains had turned it around and the service was right time pretty much every day. When London Midland took over in 2007, there was a noticeable dip in punctuality for about 6 months and then it returned to normal right time arrivals. Now we have brand new trains, faster journey times and they have finally re-done the timetable to remove Lye, Old Hill and Langley Green stops from Kidderminster trains and spread departures to every 15 minutes. What needs to be done now? *A 30 minute journey time to B'ham and 15 min to Worcester need to be aimed for as the current 35 min/ 20 min are far too slow. *Extension of trains from Worcester to Gloucester, Evesham or Hereford should also be pushed for so Wyre Foresters can reach the CrossCountry network in one change avoiding Birmingham. (Ditto for Dorridge to Leamington Spa.) *Extension of trains to Foley Park and a parkway station near the Bewdley bypass. *The doors should be operated by drivers, freeing up the guards to check tickets. In my 7 years commuting my ticket was checked less than weekly. There were regular fare dodgers who only bought a ticket when required. Even paying an occasional penalty fare is cheaper. *Kidderminster station needs to be bulldozed *An extra deck should be added to the car park. Quite a shopping list, and of course we are broke as a Nation, so bits of spending here and there to gradually build up the service. John Herbert Smith

9:49am Fri 13 Dec 13

Bcfc1186 says...

John Herbert Smith

I can only assume that you live in some parallell universe to myself.

I get four London Midland trains a day, I have not had ONE on time for 6 weeks. Not one. That is not an exagerration, that is a simple fact.

I understand that there can be infrastructual issues, but I make a point of London Midland explaining each delay to me, and guess what? The last 7 delays have been down to their shoddy train maintenance, a lack of drivers and their conductors leaving stations early! Can't blame anyone else for that can they?

They delayed a train from Kidderminster by 48 minutes the other morning without so much as an announcement. No communication, nothing.

Coming home on Wednesday, the train was 39 minutes late - their excuse?? "Unknown reasons".

If that is what you call an excellent service, then that is up to you - but for £1400 a year I think it is a disgrace.
John Herbert Smith I can only assume that you live in some parallell universe to myself. I get four London Midland trains a day, I have not had ONE on time for 6 weeks. Not one. That is not an exagerration, that is a simple fact. I understand that there can be infrastructual issues, but I make a point of London Midland explaining each delay to me, and guess what? The last 7 delays have been down to their shoddy train maintenance, a lack of drivers and their conductors leaving stations early! Can't blame anyone else for that can they? They delayed a train from Kidderminster by 48 minutes the other morning without so much as an announcement. No communication, nothing. Coming home on Wednesday, the train was 39 minutes late - their excuse?? "Unknown reasons". If that is what you call an excellent service, then that is up to you - but for £1400 a year I think it is a disgrace. Bcfc1186

12:23pm Tue 17 Dec 13

Bcfc1186 says...

8 cancelled trains to Kidderminster this week, due to a lack of drivers! Great service indeed.

Not to mention terminating services early at Stourbridge so that they would not be late back to the depot - making passengers to Kidderminster wait in the the cold for a 30 minute delayed train.

It really is a great service!
8 cancelled trains to Kidderminster this week, due to a lack of drivers! Great service indeed. Not to mention terminating services early at Stourbridge so that they would not be late back to the depot - making passengers to Kidderminster wait in the the cold for a 30 minute delayed train. It really is a great service! Bcfc1186

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