Villiers: Urgent Action needed to fix rail problems in Barnet

Former Rail Minister, Theresa Villiers MP, has urged the Transport Secretary to bang heads together to ensure the rail industry fixes the problems which have led to repeated cancellations and delays after a new timetable was introduced for Great Northern rail services in her Chipping Barnet constituency.

Trains through New Barnet, Oakleigh Park, New Southgate and further afield continue to dole out misery for commuters two weeks after the changes were implemented.

Theresa spoke to Chris Grayling at the weekend to appeal to him to get these issues resolved and do everything he can to ensure this does not happen again. She also urged him to compensate passengers who are having to put up with unacceptable disruption to their daily commute.

“This state of affairs cannot continue and in my conversation with the Secretary of State, I made it clear commuters were furious about what is happening day after day and they need proper compensation,” said Theresa.

“The new timetable does, in theory, increase local services, including four trains an hour during the off-peak period at New Barnet, Oakleigh Park and New Southgate. But this isn't much comfort to passengers if the line continues to be plagued with delays and disruption."

“I will be speaking to Network Rail to protest strongly about how they have handled the new timetable, to let them know how hugely fed up my constituents are, and to urge them to sort out this situation.”

The MP also said she would again meet Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR), which runs Great Northern services, in the next few days to repeat the message that they have to find a way to stop the disruption and get services back to normal. 

She is in regular touch with constituents who use the Great Northern line and will be visiting Oakleigh Park station this week for further discussions with commuters.