Clive added, “Southeastern’s performance since Christmas has been atrocious. Like thousands of other commuters I have faced problems getting into central London almost daily.”
“And now passengers in Eltham and Plumstead have been hit again by Tories’ fare rises. Fares have now rocketed by an eye-watering 33 percent since 2010, rising faster than most people’s pay packets.”
“That’s why I want to see the railways back in public ownership so they can be run for passengers not profit.This would mean means fairer fares, investment in a 21st century railway and giving passengers a stronger voice” he added.
Clive’s questions to minsters, with answers where available:
Q Clive Efford Shadow Minister (Culture, Media and Sport) 11 January 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will request that SoutheasternTrains and Network Rail explain the reasons for disruption to services at London Bridge on 4, 5 and 6 January 2016; and if he will publish the responses of those organisations to that request.
A Claire Perry Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
Network Rail has informed me that problems with signalling equipment caused delays to some Southeastern services via London Bridge on 4, 5 and 6 of January. On the morning of 4th January, a track circuit failed near Cannon Street. On the evening of 5th January a track circuit failed on the line to Charing Cross and Network Rail was not able to rectify the fault until the morning of the 6th.
Network Rail and Southeastern worked together to ensure the issues were rectified as quickly as possible and passenger disruption was minimised.
I remain committed to ensuring disruption is kept to a minimum while we continue the vital Thameslink Programme works to improve capacity and reliability through one of the busiest rail routes in Europe.
Clive Efford (Eltham) 14 January: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many trains were reported as delayed due to winter sunlight since 4 January 2016; and if he will make a statement.
Clive Efford (Eltham) 14 January: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what explanation he has received for the cause of recent landslides on the Bexleyheath rail line; and if he will make a statement.
Clive Efford (Eltham) 14 January: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether Southeastern trains and Network Rail have contingency plans in the event of a rail line being closed due to unforeseen circumstances in order to (a) minimise disruption to other rail lines, (b) provide extra capacity on adjacent lines to get passengers as close as possible to their usual destinations and (c) ensure that up-to-the-minute information is provided to passengers regarding alternative routes and replacement services; and if he will make a statement.
Clive Efford (Eltham) 14 January: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he expects repairs to the Bexleyheath line to be completed; and if he will make a statement.
Clive Efford (Eltham) 14 January: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether railway verges are surveyed to identify locations where there is a danger that landslides may occur; and if he will make a statement.
Clive Efford Shadow Minister (Culture, Media and Sport) 14 January 2016
My constituents have been suffering all week from cancelled trains because of a landslide on our local rail line. Can we have a statement from the Transport Secretary, because the knock-on effect is complete chaos on all lines? People have received no information from Southeastern about when the service is likely to be reinstated and they are suffering trying to get to and from work. Businesses are also suffering, so we really need someone to get a grip of the situation.
Chris Grayling, Leader of the House of Commons,
I absolutely understand the problems that such events cause the hon. Gentleman’s constituents and, indeed, others. Other parts of the network have also suffered in recent weeks because of extreme weather. I will make sure that his concerns are drawn to the attention of the Transport Secretary this morning. The Transport Secretary will be here in 10 days’ time, but the issue is clearly urgent so I will make sure that the hon. Gentleman’s concerns are passed on immediately.
To see a video of Clive’s question, click here.