By SEHERISH MAHMOOD
Batley and Spen MP Tracy Brabin has secured a public meeting with senior representatives from TransPennine Express after “months of unacceptable service” for local people.
The MP wrote to the Chief Executive of the rail company, which operates the majority of services through Batley, after several constituents contacted her when the direct service to Manchester was removed from schedules without prior warning.
The removal of the service came after months of delays, cancellations, and overcrowding on the local rail network with constituents frequently contacting Ms Brabin to express their frustration and dissatisfaction.
Batley and Spen MP Tracy Brabin said: “I am very pleased that TransPennine have accepted my invitation to Batley to engage with those who are reliant on its services.
“This meeting will give my constituents, many of whom have had a torrid time on our rail network over the past eight months, the opportunity to air their concerns and ask questions of the operator.
“And while I understand that the buck stops with the Government for much of what we’ve had to ensure, I know there are commuters who would welcome the opportunity to have an open dialogue with TransPennine.
“Rail services are so important to the people of Batley and Spen and we deserve so much better than the unacceptable service we’ve had over the past few months.”
Ms Brabin has repeatedly called on the Secretary of State for Transport, Chris Grayling, to take responsibility for the issues and commit to much-needed investment for the local rail network.
The MP also spoke at length in a Westminster Hall debate on Rail in Yorkshire in December, raising issues including reliability, disabled access and the long-promised electrification of the TransPennine Route.
Batley station has been consistently placed in the bottom hundred in the country for performance, and for a time, in the bottom ten, according to real-time analysis from the On Time Trains website. Despite this, passengers are being forced to pay more for services after what Ms Brabin called an “insulting” 3% hike in fares which was implemented in the New Year.
The public meeting will take place between 10 am – 12 pm on February 23rd at the Older People’s Centre at Upper Commercial Street, Batley, WF17 5DP.
Free tickets for the meeting can be purchased here.