- Overall journey satisfaction has increased across the Southern region
- St Pancras station ranks top for passenger satisfaction at 96% and London Bridge station makes the top 5 with 91%
Passenger satisfaction at Network Rail’s stations across the Southern region has increased, according to the National Rail Passenger Survey published today.
The survey, carried out by independent watchdog Transport Focus, asked around 30,000 passengers nationally for their views.
St Pancras station was the top performing Network Rail managed station with a passenger satisfaction score of 96%, up 2% from last year. The station is highly regarded for the ‘Upkeep of the station building’ (95%) and connections with public transport (94%).
London Bridge station achieved the second highest increase year-on-year of any Network Rail station nationwide with 7% and an overall satisfaction score of 91%. Passengers were most happy with the ‘Facilities for bicycle parking’ (up 32%) and ‘Availability of seating’ (up 23%).
Charing Cross station also achieved the fifth highest increase nationwide with a score of 85% satisfaction. Passengers appreciated the ‘Ticket buying facilities’ (up 6%) and ‘Facilities for bicycle parking’ (up 20%).
In the South West, customers are already benefitting from 5,000 extra seats following the refurbishment of mainline trains and 80 extra services per week have been introduced since the new year. However, there is more work to be done and a Joint Performance Improvement Centre has been set up to continue the improvements in service information and the availability of staff.
John Halsall, Managing Director for Network Rail’s Southern Region, said: “We know that the most important thing for passengers is a punctual and reliable journey. These scores reflect the hard work taking place with our partners, the train operators and our efforts in Putting Passengers First.
“We recently devolved greater responsibilities to our teams across the Southern region and this is ensuring closer working between our partners to improve passengers’ travelling experiences.”
Jay Khan, Head of Stations Strategy & Delivery at Network Rail High Speed, which manages St Pancras, said: “We are delighted with the results of the Autumn 2019 NRPS survey at London St Pancras. The 96% satisfaction score is our best result for five years and is testament to all the hard work that has gone into delivering passenger improvements at the station over the course of the last 12 months.”
Passenger satisfaction with Southern Rail services is at its highest level for seven years. Satisfaction with Southern rose 8 points year-on-year to 82% in the autumn 2019 survey. Sister company Gatwick Express is also at a seven-year high, at 89%, and Thameslink has risen 4 points, to 82%.
Passengers rated Southern and Gatwick Express staff very highly, with satisfaction rates of 88% and 93% (a massive 16-points increase) respectively, reflecting a drive towards more proactive customer assistance.
Southern and Gatwick Express Managing Director Angie Doll said: “Our passengers are telling us through this independent survey that we have really turned a corner, with the best satisfaction for seven years.
“Passengers clearly rate our people highly and they are responding positively to the quality of our trains, the free Wi-Fi onboard and our investment in new technology such as smart ticketing. A separate independent survey also shows that trust in Southern has been climbing steadily for two years.
“However, I know we have much more to do, especially with our partners at Network Rail, to further improve punctuality.”
These scores highlight the close collaboration with our train operating partners and our efforts in Putting Passengers First. Network Rail has also embraced the ‘One Team’ approach at all our major stations, allowing us to work together under one common identity with our train operating partners.
In total, 80% of passengers on the Southern region are satisfied with their overall journeys – up 4%.