May 25 2013 Latest news:
by Flora Drury
Thursday, July 26, 2012
Haringey rail commuters could find their services into and out of central London more than halved in future under plans to improve inter-city services, it is claimed.
Hornsey and Wood Green MP Lynne Featherstone has asked for meetings with Transport ministers to discuss changes to the Thameslink franchise, which she says could result in services at Hornsey and Harringay railway stations reduced from 2018.
Writing in her blog, she says proposals in the consultation such as increasing the length of trains from six to 12 carriages to ease overcrowding would mean those services would no longer be able to stop at either station, as the platforms are too short.
Ms Featherstone broadly supports the proposals which are designed to ease pressure on commuter services from outside the capital. She referred to the consequences on local stations as “a fly in the ointment”.
Yet confusion reigns, as the Department for Transpot (DfT) says there are “no plans to reduce the number of trains” stopping at either station.
Stroud Green resident Ben Myring, who uses Harringay station, says things are unlikely to be as clear cut yet, and this is an opportunity for rail users to argue for an improved service.
He said: “The DfT must have a plan which does not involve reducing the service but – on the face of it – if they do not do anything the service would be reduced from six to two trains an hour. There is potential the services could not only be kept, but upped to 12 an hour. But in order to do anything like that, they need to make guarantees either the Thameslink trains will stop at Harringay or to put in new, longer platforms.”
He called on commuters and residents to make their voices heard in the current Thameslink consultation, adding: “I think that by raising the flag now we are more likely to get not just the six trains an hour but potentially considerably more.”