Witham MP meets Greater Anglia executives to discuss new trains
The Witham MP, Priti Patel, has today (28.02.20) met with executives from Greater Anglia to discuss the new high-tech inter-city mainline trains being introduced by the company on the Great Eastern Main Line. Priti was joined at the Valero Lounge in Witham by Greater Anglia’s Managing Director, Jamie Burles and Head of Corporate Affairs, Jonathan Denby. The pair brought with them the trophy the company had received at the previous evening’s Rail Business Awards, as Train Operator of the Year.
The first new main-line train entered service on 8th January 2020 and Greater Anglia expect the rest of the new inter-city trains to be on the network by the Spring. These hi-tech trains offer significant benefits for passengers including, increased seating capacity of up to 41%, wi-fi, plug and USB points, faster acceleration and braking, which will ultimately allow Greater Anglia to reduce journey times on the Great Eastern Mainline (GEML) and better accessibility with automatic doors and a retractable step that provides level access for wheelchairs and people with heavy luggage or pushchairs.
Commenting after the meeting, Priti said: “As a member and former Chairman of the Great Eastern Main Line Taskforce, I led region-wide efforts to secure over £1 billion of investment which enabled the introduction of these high quality new trains and I am delighted to now see them being rolled out across the network. This is a major step forward in our ambitions to deliver a better quality, high performing railway for commuters in Essex and across the East Anglia region.
“I know my constituents are eager to see new trains start to serve stations across the Witham constituency and Greater Anglia have confirmed that they expect the first suburban train to enter service in late Spring/early Summer, with more trains being rolled out serving Witham during the second half of this year. I will continue to hold Greater Anglia to account to ensure the new trains enter service in my constituency as soon as possible, after rigorous testing to ensure the trains improve service standards and raise reliability levels as they are rolled out onto the network.”
Jamie Burles, Managing Director of Greater Anglia said: “We are looking forward to completing the full introduction of the new intercity trains later in the Spring and starting to roll out the new suburban trains in earnest during the second half of the year. All our efforts are focused on improving the quality, reliability and consistency of our service and providing a positive step change in the overall travelling experience.”