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First Capital Connect to offer NR extra track access

Network Rail is being offered a one-off programme of extra track access at evenings and weekends by First Capital Connect to ensure lineside equipment is maintained and upgraded.

The operator’s new managing director, David Statham, says the plans will increase service reliability, as well as improving the cleanliness of trains and passenger service information.

The operator plans to help Network Rail improve the reliability of power supplies and signalling, which disrupted journeys over winter.

Mobile engineers will also be positioned at key locations on the south Thameside route to respond to track and signal faults faster.

FCC will introduce deep cleaning for train carpets, increase on-board litter picking and replace damaged seats in service at terminus stations.

Text and email alerts will be updated for multi-leg journeys and drivers will start to use a new phone service to quickly find out the cause of delays so they can inform passengers. The ‘meet the manager’ events will be provided in more areas.

Statham said: “My determination as the new managing director of First Capital Connect is to put our passengers at the heart of our business. Research tells us people want improved punctuality, a better, cleaner travelling environment and spot-on service information when services aren’t running to plan.

“We’ve already increased capacity on our trains by up to 29%, invested millions in new station facilities and cut the level of crime on our network by 37%.

“But we now need to help Network Rail so that we have fewer signal, track and power failures; overhaul our train cleaning regimes and improve further the service information we provide and the way we help people reach their destinations when there is disruption.”

Phil Verster, route managing director for Network Rail, said: “Only by working together as an industry can we tackle some of the problems that have been affecting passengers. The extra access FCC is providing will allow us to replace equipment and improve reliability.”

Tell us what you think – have your say below, or email us directly at



Chris Dugdale   14/06/2013 at 14:36

If this means cramming trains on to one pair of tracks on the four track sections, then fine, I can't help but smell bustitution however - that would not be so good.

QAZI   14/06/2013 at 16:53

generation of power by train and use to another purpose for stations etc collaboration with pakistan due to train works in pakistan

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