Passengers on Great Western Railway trains to Bedwyn in Wiltshire have complained about continuing unacceptable service.
With many Hitachi trains still off-duty as a result of aluminium cracks, regular services between Bedwyn and London have been suspended and replaced by a single diesel shuttle to Newbury, where passengers must change trains.
“The changes are not reliable and there are too many cancellations,” Steve Smith, of the Bedwyn Trains Passenger Group, told RAIL.
“It’s a perfect storm. Our service is very poor. We want our direct trains to Paddington back. If that is not possible, GWR needs to run a Bedwyn to Reading shuttle instead of just to Newbury.”
GWR told the passenger group that Hitachi is only providing 65 trains a day. However, it needs 75 of its fleet of 93 trains available each day to run a normal service.
To deploy limited rolling stock elsewhere, it has withdrawn the Class 802 Hitachi trains that are used for stopping services on the Berks & Hants line, but has only one Class 165 Turbo diesel multiple unit available to replace them.
The operator added that longer-distance trains on the line through Pewsey and Westbury to Exeter are too tightly timed to make additional stops.
GWR has not been informed when the Hitachi trains will be repaired. The train provider is paid according to rolling stock availability.
To read the full story, see RAIL 939.