04:19AM, Sunday 11 November 2012
Network Rail have assured passengers that the arrival of Crossrail will not lead to a reduction in fast train services from Maidenhead and Twyford to London.
The response follows MP Theresa May's concerns last week. The Home Secretary said she was also disappointed that there will be no fast services available via Crossrail.
She understands Network Rail is looking at how the mainline timetable between Maidenhead and Paddington might be changed when Crossrail services start at Maidenhead station in 2019.
While supportive of the project overall, Mrs May is concerned its arrival could be used as an excuse to strip passengers of fast services into the capital that they rely on.
Crossrail services are due to start from 2018 and an estimated 200 million people will use the service each year.
A Network Rail spokesperson said: “The combination of Crossrail services and other enhancements, such as electrification of the Great Western main line and the remodelling of the railway at Reading, will dramatically increase rail capacity between Maidenhead and London.
"As described within the Route Utilisation Strategy, there are no plans to reduce the fast services from Maidenhead, however the final decision on long term planning will ultimately be taken by the Department for Transport in the specification of the future Great Western franchise.”
The Route Utilisation Strategy is a document produced by Network Rail for each of the major rail routes in the country, which sets a strategy for the coming decades.
The document is produced in conjunction with the wider rail industry and follows mandatory consultation with local authorities, MPs, and passenger groups.
The planned service pattern for Crossrail is as follows:
10 trains per hour (tph) on Great Western Main Line
– 4tph to/from Heathrow Terminal 4
– 2tph to/from West Drayton (in peak)
– 4tph to/from Maidenhead
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