Customer satisfaction with train services on the South West Trains network stands at 79%, according to the latest data issued by independent watchdog Passenger Focus.
The survey found 8% of passengers interviewed were dissatisfied with the service, with 13% saying they were neither satisfied nor dissatisfied*.
South West Trains staff were rated highly by passengers in the survey, with 84% of people surveyed saying they were happy with how their request to station staff was handled, marking a 9% year on year increase. Satisfaction with the availability of staff at stations and the attitudes and helpfulness of station staff also increased by 4% and 2% respectively.
The Spring 2014 survey was carried out between 2 February and 13 April 2014 when many passengers will have experienced the impact of some of the most extreme weather in 250 years.
Tim Shoveller, Chief Executive of the South West Trains-Network Rail Alliance, said: “Around eight in 10 of our customers remain satisfied with our service and we are pleased to see increases in the ratings for stations and helpfulness of staff.
“Our network saw the impact of some of the wettest and worst weather conditions in centuries during February and March which we know will have impacted on these latest customer satisfaction scores.
“Much of our railway was built more than 150 years ago with the expectation of less severe weather and it has been under increasing strain. We have made good progress in repairing trains and infrastructure damaged by the storms. We are also continuing to invest in making our network more resilient with some badly needed improvements to our track and infrastructure to address the backlog of investment that is impacting on our customers.
“At the same time, we welcome the work being done by the Government to improve the resilience of our transport against severe weather and we look forward to working with them to developing these plans.
“I would like to pay tribute to the teams across South West Trains and Network Rail who kept the railway running and safe for our passengers during some extreme weather conditions. It’s pleasing to see that their professionalism and commitment has been recognised in the latest satisfaction survey”.
South West Trains- Network Rail Alliance passengers have also benefited from over £18 million worth of improvements at their train stations over the last year. Investment in new and improved facilities at 30 different stations on the Alliance network has delivered a wide range of benefits for passengers including 1,100 additional cycle spaces, new lifts, footbridges and accessible toilets. Larger scale investment is delivering brand new stations at Wokingham, Fleet, Overton and Templecombe.
Mr Shoveller continued: “Over the past year, we have also invested millions of pounds to improve our station facilities and at the same time we are in the process of rolling out 108 additional carriages onto our network to provide extra space on some of our busiest routes.
“We know that this investment will start to make a difference to our customers, however we are listening to what our customers are telling us and remain focussed on doing everything we can to ensure we better meet the expectations of our customers.”