MP welcomes Amberley train timetable revision
Arundel & South Downs MP Nick Herbert has welcomed revised proposals from Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) for rail services at Amberley after he raised concerns about their planned new timetable.
The original timetable changes, which will come into effect in May next year, proposed fewer trains stopping at Amberley, to the dismay of villagers and commuters. Mr Herbert met members of the action group Amberley Rail SOS in the summer and agreed to raise their concerns with GTR.
The MP highlighted the 58,000 journeys to and from Amberley Station every year, half of them being made by frequent commuters. The station serves the wider area around Amberley including Bury, Rackham and Storrington.
Members of Amberley SOS met GTR separately to also make the case for increasing the frequency of service.
In response Nick Brown, Chief Operating Officer at GTR, said that the company would “review the peak and shoulder peak service for Amberley and we are pleased to be in a position to add additional services to provide a half hourly service during these times.”
GTR have committed to meet the Amberley Rail SOS again in the Autumn to discuss the possibility of increasing their service to half hourly throughout the day and on Saturdays. The new timetable will be published in December.
Mr Herbert joined villagers and Amberley Rail SOS on Saturday (7 October) at the station to demonstrate his continuing support for their campaign and maintain pressure on GTR to deliver improved services for the village.
Alex Beveridge, local resident and campaigner, said: "The response from the community was phenomenal. We had over 100 responses to Southern Rail's consultation, with many more writing to our local MP. This led to a very constructive response and meetings with Southern. We now await final approval from the Department of Transport."
Nick Herbert said: “I am pleased with the response from GTR which shows that they have listened to local concerns, and I congratulate Amberley Rail SOS on their effective campaign.
“Amberley was the only station with more than 40,000 journeys a year that would not have had a half-hourly service during peak times. Local residents and commuters deserved better.”
1. Photograph – Nick Herbert with passengers at Amberley station.
2. To read the letter from GTR to Nick Herbert see http://tinyurl.com/y8chxajd.
3. To follow the activity of Amberley Rail SOS see Twitter @AmberleyRailSOS, Facebook www.facebook.com/AmberleyRailSOS. They can be contacted at AmberleyRailSOS@gmail.com.