Milton Keynes MPs Mark Lancaster and Iain Stewart have launched an online survey to attain the thoughts of rail passengers who regularly use the West Coast Mainline - specifically those who use the current Virgin services from Milton Keynes Central.
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Companies will soon bid to form the West Coast Partnership, who will be responsible for the current Virgin services on the West Coast Mainline from April 2019 and will additionally operate the initial HS2 services in 2026, between London and Birmingham.
Mr Lancaster and Mr Stewart are keen to write to the companies vying for the contract to inform them of exactly what commuters in MK are looking for over the coming years.
Milton Keynes South MP Iain Stewart said: “As vice-chair of the West Coast All Party Parliamentary Group, I will do all I can to ensure that the voices of the commuters in Milton Keynes are being heard. Filling out this survey will give Mark and I a greater understanding about your valued thoughts and views on what is working and what more needs to be done.”
Milton Keynes North MP Mark Lancaster added: “As Milton Keynes has a growing population of commuters, it is vital that their voices are heard throughout this process. If you have concerns with costs, on-board facilities or the state of the station etc. we want to know. All the responses will put together and sent in a joint letter to the three consortiums who will be bidding. The more responses the stronger our arguments will be.”
This survey will help to accumulate the views and feelings of people who use this service regularly, to improve their experience in the future. The survey includes questions on improvements to facilities, along with the services that are provided to locations, such as Edinburgh, Manchester and London Euston, all across the West Coast Mainline.
The three consortiums who will be bidding are:
•First Trenitalia West Coast Ltd, a joint venture between First Rail Holdings Ltd and Trenitalia SpA.
• MTR West Coast Partnership Ltd, a joint venture between MTR Corporation (UK) Ltd and Guangshen Railway Company.
• West Coast Partnership Ltd a joint venture between Stagecoach Group plc, Virgin Holdings Ltd and SNCF C3.
An invitation to tender will be issued to the shortlisted consortia in November, with a contract expected to be awarded in November 2018.
The survey can be found and completed at https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/576363C