Over 2,000 trains have been cancelled on the West Anglia Main Line since Transport for London (TfL) took control of the service last May, new data has shown. Local London Assembly Member Joanne McCartney AM received data from the Mayor of London showing that services running between Liverpool Street and Enfield Town had been subject to 2,068 cancellations since 31 May 2015. Meanwhile 1,007 services during that period were run with just four carriages instead of the eight car trains promised as part of TfL’s takeover. Joanne McCartney said the poor service was “hugely disappointing” for commuters.
The data provided in a response to a Mayoral Question tabled by Joanne McCartney AM, shows that whilst the number of full cancellations and short-formed carriages has declined in recent months, passengers are still experiencing problems with the service. A reduced service ran 87 times in the last recorded month, [January], and trains were cancelled a total of 80 times.
Joanne McCartney AM has repeatedly raised this issue with the Mayor of London, London Overground Rail Operations Limited (LOROL) and Network Rail since the takeover. LOROL have said the problems were attributable to the mixed fleet of carriages they had inherited from Abellio Greater Anglia, a number of which required urgent repairs and maintenance.
TfL promised commuters greater reliability of services, lower fares, and better trains when it took over services running between Liverpool Street and Enfield Town. Yet passengers are still being left to contend with cancelled services and overcrowding, with eight-car trains reduced to four.
The response from the Mayor also states “TfL and its train operator LOROL have been working to improve the reliability of train services” and are “delivering a planned £2m investment in refurbishing existing rolling stock and replacing vital life expired components.” TfL go further to say that the delays that are occurring on the line are a “result of infrastructure failures, which are outside of London Overground’s direct control.”
Local Labour London Assembly Member Joanne McCartney AM said:
“It is hugely disappointing to see that there are still a significant number of cancellations and reductions in service on the London Overground between Liverpool Street and Enfield Town. Commuters were promised better services and reliability when TfL took over the line last year, yet are still contending with delays and overcrowding.
“I appreciate that TfL are working on resolving the issues and are working with Network Rail to address issues with the infrastructure. When further suburban rail is devolved to TfL, inspections of rolling stock and infrastructure need to be carried out in advance to address any potential issues and prevent reductions in services that commuters in Enfield and Haringey have experienced, when incorporating future lines to the London Overground.”