Passenger satisfaction at Network Rail’s four biggest stations in the south east is at its highest ever, the National Rail Passenger Survey published today has revealed.
Overall satisfaction at the route’s four managed stations – London Bridge, Victoria, Charing Cross and Cannon Street – is 85.5%, a 4.1% increase compared with the Spring 2018 results. This is the highest score ever achieved for our four stations and reflects the close collaboration with our partners, the train operators and our efforts in Putting Passengers First.
London Bridge station achieved the highest increase year-on-year of any Network Rail station nationwide at 7.5% with an overall satisfaction score of 90.4%. Passengers were happy with ‘The choice of shops/eating/drinking facilities available’ (up 21%) and ‘Ticket buying facilities’ (up 17%).
Charing Cross station also achieved a score of 89.5% satisfaction, which is a 6.4% increase versus Spring 2018. Passengers appreciated the ‘Ticket buying facilities’ (up 16%) and ‘Facilities for bicycle parking’ (up 20%).
London Victoria scored 82.1%, which is an increase of 2.1% compared to last year, even though the survey happened while the station toilets were closed for refurbishment. Since then, the toilets have reopened to the public along with the installation of 300 new seats and charging points. Cannon Street also achieved 82% which increased 1.1% on last year.
Ian Hanson, Stations Director for Network Rail, said: “These scores reflect the efforts we are making in listening to passengers and putting them first.
“We need to look after our passengers from the moment they choose to travel by train. This shows we care and that we want them to have a comfortable journey as soon as they arrive at our stations.
“We are delighted to see our scores increase. Our investment in these stations is part of our ongoing work to provide passengers with modern, reliable and comfortable facilities.”
Overall satisfaction among Southeastern passengers has increased by 5% since Spring 2018 and 4 out of every 5 passengers (80%) now rate themselves as very or fairly satisfied with their journey. Southeastern is one of only three train operators in Britain to show a significant year-on-year improvement in the Spring 2019 National Rail Passenger Survey.
David Statham, Southeastern's Managing Director, said: “I'm delighted that we've made such a significant improvement in our passengers' satisfaction, which reflects the daily hard work of everyone here at Southeastern, and more than £80 million of investment we've made to improve our stations, trains and the punctuality of our service.”
Satisfaction levels among Southern Rail passengers are at the highest level for seven years and some 81% of Southern passengers said they were satisfied or very satisfied, a 12-percentage point increase. The proportion of passengers saying they were happy with punctuality also rose 20% percentage points to 74%.
Passenger satisfaction on Gatwick Express is two percentage points higher, at 89%, which is also the highest in seven years.
Thameslink, which had fallen to 77% in the autumn 2018 survey following the timetable difficulties in May last year, has recorded its second highest-ever figure of 83%.
Patrick Verwer, Chief Executive Officer of Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR), said: “Passengers on Southern are now happier with the service than they have been at any time in the past seven years. Across the board, they are more satisfied with the standard of our stations and trains and the smooth-running of the timetable. Underpinning these scores is a consistently reliable service, with nine out of trains running on time.”
Mr Verwer added: “Passenger satisfaction has bounced back on Thameslink and Great Northern as services have recovered from the disruption caused by the spring 2018 timetable change. On Thameslink, passenger satisfaction is at its second highest level. Punctuality and reliability on Thameslink are good, with almost nine in ten trains arriving on time.”
Although the results of the survey are encouraging, there is still a lot more that can be done to make the railway more reliable and better for everyone that uses this vital public service.