West Midlands steams ahead
Centro has welcomed the results of a national survey which saw an increase in passenger satisfaction with rail services in the West Midlands. The National Passenger Survey (NPS) provides a network-wide picture of customers’ satisfaction with rail travel.
Passenger opinions of train services are collected twice a year from a representative sample of passenger journeys.
Councillor Kath Hartley, the chairman of Centro’s Putting Passengers First Committee, said: “In comparison with the rest of the country we have done very well here in the West Midlands.
“However there is no room for complacency, we are still in the middle of the table and that means we will be pulling out all the stops to ensure we get to the top.”
In the survey the West Midlands was ranked fourth out of England’s seven Passenger Transport Executives (PTEs), with all its scores either increasing or staying the same on the previous year.
Overall satisfaction in the West Midlands is 88%, which is above the national average and represents a 4% increase on last year.
Train operator London Midland, which holds the franchise to run local rail services across the West Midlands, was singled out for praise in the report, especially for its work in dealing with delays to services.
The survey found 83% of LM passengers were satisfied with information provision at its stations, against a national average of 81%.
Attitude and helpfulness of staff was rated as two per cent above the national average of 71%.
Passenger satisfaction on sufficient room to stand up or sit down on board trains was up eight per cent to 74%, while satisfaction with seating areas on trains was up seven per cent to 80%.
London Midland’s Commercial Director Richard Brooks said: “We at London Midland are delighted with these results which reflect the hard work put in by our staff. However, we are not complacent and know that there is still room for improvement.
“All of us at London Midland, working in conjunction with our partners at Centro, will continue to identify ways to improve our performance for the benefit of our passengers.”
Anthony Smith, chief executive of Passenger Focus, said London Midland, along with Merseyrail and Heathrow Connect, had all improved “significantly”.
“Particularly impressive was London Midlands’ whopping 17% rise in how they dealt with delays,” he said.
Merseytravel was top of the seven PTEs on 94%, while Transport for Greater Manchester came bottom with 78%.