Mark Prisk, MP for Hertford and Stortford, has today renewed his call for a fairer deal for his commuters, in a debate he secured in the House of Commons. He said that commuters paid a lot for a service which they often felt was “unreliable, unpleasant and unacceptable”.
In his speech Mr. Prisk called for a number of improvements including better compensation for when things go wrong, automatic refunds for commuters, modern carriages and four tracking into London, so to ensure a more reliable service for commuters.
On refunds for delays, Mr. Prisk pressed Claire Perry MP, the Rail Minister, on two key fronts: reducing the length of delay for when refunds are available and automatic compensation for commuters. At present both Govia Thameslink and Abellio Greater Anglia provide refunds for delays of 30 minutes or more. Mr. Prisk called this inadequate for the typical journey to London.
In reply the Minister announced that detailed plans for applying refunds after 15 minute delays would be set out in the next few months. She confirmed this would benefit passengers for both Abellio Greater Anglia and Govia Thameslink. The Minister also confirmed that the Government expected that new contactless cards would make automatic refunds practical and that the rail companies would be setting out their plans shortly.
Mark Prisk said “I am encouraged by the good news on rolling stock and on the new fairer rules for refunds. Passengers pay a lot to travel and they deserve a more reliable, quality service and a fair refund when things go wrong.”