MP's all aboard for improved Westbury to Swindon rail service

Wiltshire Times: MP Duncan Hames chats to rail traveller Richard Coates on the first train of the improved Westbury to Swindon service MP Duncan Hames chats to rail traveller Richard Coates on the first train of the improved Westbury to Swindon service

MP Duncan Hames greeted commuters on a train from Trowbridge to Swindon this morning, as part of the launch of the new TransWilts service.

First Great Western’s draft timetable now has an additional six trains a day in each direction from Monday to Saturday – meaning there will be one train approximately every two hours, including early morning and evening services in both directions.

There will also be an additional four trains on Sundays throughout the year, with at least one seasonal service connecting with the existing Westbury to Weymouth service in each direction.

Mr Hames, MP for the Chippenham constituency, was selling and checking tickets on the 7.38am train from Trowbridge to Swindon, which also stopped at Melksham and Chippenham on its way from Westbury to Swindon.

He said: “I’m really delighted we could get the grant to make it possible to run this service.

“It has been a long campaign by the TransWilts Community Rail Partnership, who I have worked closely with for a number of years.

“The service will particularly benefit Melksham, where we saw services cut to just two trains a day eight years ago, which meant commuters had to change trains to get to where they needed to go.

“It was great to meet all the customers and I want to be in a situation where we want more carriages on an over-subsidised service. It is important that people use the service now it’s here.”

The subsidised Trans Wilts Rail Service forms part of Wiltshire Council’s Local Sustainable Transport Fund project.

Funding for the project comes after the council successfully bid for a Department for Transport (DfT) grant of £4.25m, which will support the improved service for three years.

Richard Coates, who was travelling on the service, said: “It’s not only going to save me time from changing trains, particularly at Bath, it will also save me money.”

A single ticket from Trowbridge to Swindon will cost £13.40 and an anytime day return £17.60. A single ticket from Melksham to Swindon will cost £6.50, and an anytime day return £8.90.

A single ticket from Chippenham to Swindon will cost £7.50 and an anytime day return £8.90, while a single ticket from Westbury to Swindon will cost £13.40 and an anytime day return £17.60.

Comments (1)

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1:07pm Mon 9 Dec 13

Blanche Terraine says...

Please don't let self-important, publicity-seeking politicians hijack good news stories when their efforts have been peripheral to the success. We all know what a splendid fellow Duncan Hames is. He tells us often enough.
Please don't let self-important, publicity-seeking politicians hijack good news stories when their efforts have been peripheral to the success. We all know what a splendid fellow Duncan Hames is. He tells us often enough. Blanche Terraine

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