Overcrowded rail services to get more seats

Profile image for Western Morning News

By Western Morning News | Wednesday, November 23, 2011, 08:01

Thousands of extra commuter seats have been laid on to ease overcrowded rail services in parts of the Westcountry.

Two additional carriages will serve branch lines at peak times – one from Truro to Falmouth in Cornwall and the other between Paignton, Exmouth, Exeter and Barnstaple in Devon.

The £29 million investment in a total of 48 carriages on the Great Western network has been underwritten by the Government and rail operator First Great Western (FGW).

Unusually, Devon County Council and Cornwall Council have also stumped up £120,000 between them, and Devon and Cornwall Community Rail Partnership has added cash to the pot.

Passenger numbers have doubled on the Truro and Falmouth line after an EU-funded passing "loop" was installed in 2008. The new carriage will add an additional 2,100 seats during the day.

The carriage in Devon adds 270 seats through rush hours, alleviating overcrowding, notably at Paignton.

MPs and FGW hailed the investment, but Liberal Democrat Cornwall councillor Lord Robin Teverson said local authority handouts underlined "everything that is wrong" with rail franchises.



  • Profile image for David361

    In fairness to First Great Western, nobody in this part of the world can even think of starting to complain about overcrowding until they've done the trip from Reading into Paddington at peak times. THAT'S overcrowding. Not only that, but it happens everday, for a large chunk of the day, unlike here where there's almost always seats on any train outside of the morning and evening peak. Of course they have to prioritise having extra carriages into London.

    The other problem Devon and Cornwall has is short platforms. Many stations simply cannot take an extra carriage without major work, and you have to ask is it worth making a platform which only sees a few hundered people a year using it a third longer to accomodate the extra carriage? Where's the value for money or benefit there?

    By David361 at 01:01 on 24/11/11

  • Profile image for Mustafachat

    Standing for miles without anything to hold on to, can this be right, must be very dangerous. Some poor people have no option but I will give it a miss. Reminds me of loading sheep.

    By Mustafachat at 19:25 on 23/11/11

  • Profile image for nicold

    People can afford to travel by rail?...amazing!

    By nicold at 11:34 on 23/11/11

  • Profile image for decker

    Extra carriages, as Nick113 says, a small step, but we reallly need a very large step. London upgrades appear to take most of the cach, and apart from Virgin Trains being allowed two extra carriages on their pendilino trains, not much else elsewhere.
    We are told that Bombardier at Derby have no new train orders, and are likely to close in the near future. What happened to the much trumpeted trains extended from Paignton to Churston?

    By decker at 11:01 on 23/11/11

  • Profile image for 2ladybugs


    Well I suppose we couldn't expect much more out of the 48 carriages being supplied to the GWN!

    By 2ladybugs at 10:36 on 23/11/11

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