At the end of May, services running out of London Liverpool Street transferred from Abellio to TFL Rail – operated as an offshoot of Transport for London (TfL).
TfL promised significant improvements to these services and, according to a regular commuter on these lines, passengers are already experiencing a better service including:
- Cheaper tickets.
- Start-to-close staffing of stations.
- Cleaner trains and stations.
- Clearer and more frequent announcements.
Further improvements are expected in 2017 as the new Crossrail trains start to run on these lines.
The way in which TfL Rail has enhanced these services, following its previous success in turning round the much maligned Silverlink lines to be come the popular London Overground, provides a practical example of how rail services can be made to work for the passengers who use them.
That’s the difference when rail services are run by a not-for-profit organisation like TfL that is accountable to the public and its passengers, rather than private companies like Southern & Southeastern that are accountable to their shareholders.