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MP calls for answers on ‘totally unacceptable’ train service between Great Yarmouth and Norwich

PUBLISHED: 11:44 17 March 2018 | UPDATED: 11:44 17 March 2018

Brandon Lewis has described the train service between Great Yarmouth and Norwich as 'totally unacceptable'. Photo: Bill Smith

Brandon Lewis has described the train service between Great Yarmouth and Norwich as 'totally unacceptable'. Photo: Bill Smith

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An MP has written to Greater Anglia asking for explanations following a week of train cancellations and delays.

One of numerous replacement buses from Great Yarmouth train station last week. Picture: Jacob MasseyOne of numerous replacement buses from Great Yarmouth train station last week. Picture: Jacob Massey

Brandon Lewis, MP for Great Yarmouth, took the action after a succession of trains were affected between Yarmouth and Norwich last week.

Mr Lewis said: “The frequent cancellations and delays experienced by passengers on the Great Yarmouth to Norwich line are totally unacceptable. This is a vital transport link for our town and I have written to Greater Anglia to ask them to explain why the service was so poor last week and why there are frequent delays and cancellations on this line.

“I am also pressing them as to why their customers aren’t able to claim compensation when a replacement bus service is in operation, and have asked for an update as to what plans they have to upgrade the line to stop such problems occurring in future.”

A spokesperson for Greater Anglia said the service was hampered by the residual impact of the snowy weather from the previous week.

Brandon Lewis has described the train service between Great Yarmouth and Norwich as 'totally unacceptable'.  Picture: James BassBrandon Lewis has described the train service between Great Yarmouth and Norwich as 'totally unacceptable'. Picture: James Bass

They said: “Last week we were still suffering from knock-on effects on our service from the extreme Beast from the East weather which led to some cancellations. We called in extra engineers and worked as quickly as possible to fix trains that developed faults during the severe weather as well as carry out day-to-day maintenance.

“We made sure that customers were able to complete their journeys by rail replacement bus but we apologise for any inconvenience caused to customers.”

Steve Hewitt from the East Norfolk Transport Users Association said he hoped the situation would improve once the £68m worth of scheduled upgrades in the region are completed in March 2019.

He said: “Replacement buses don’t really cut it in terms of visitors as well because they come with a lot of luggage.

“It’s all well and good adding extra services in the summer but if your train is cancelled and replaced with a bus it is very off putting for visitors.

“We can only hope that when these new trains come in, in 2019, that things will change and there will be enough rolling stock to cover cancellations.”

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