Henry Smith MP to ask rail users how Passenger Benefit Fund should be spent

Henry Smith MP is asking Crawley’s rail passengers to get involved with helping to decide how local stations can spend their share of a £15 million Passenger Benefit Fund – a fine levied by the Government on train operator Govia Thameslink Railway (Southern Railway and Thameslink) as a result of the May 2018 timetable disruption.

A total of £290,000 for local passenger improvement projects was announced earlier in the year, following delays endured by train users at Three Bridges, Crawley, Ifield and Gatwick Airport stations last year.

The Crawley MP is holding a meeting on Friday 14th June at 6.30pm, at the Arora Hotel in Crawley for local passengers and stakeholders to find out more about the Fund and how they can submit ideas for our local stations.

Henry said;

“This is a good opportunity for passengers and representative groups to get involved and let the rail operator, GTR, know what meaningful improvements will benefit passengers locally.

“Such engagement is important and I also urge passengers, from regular commuters to occasional travellers, to join the online passenger panel to make sure a full representation of views can be heard.”

Alex Foulds, Deputy Chief Operating Officer at GTR, commented;

“We have established the Fund to deliver tangible improvements for passengers in recognition of the difficulties experienced following last year’s May timetable change. We are asking passenger groups to tell us what these improvements should be, and we are pleased to be working with Henry Smith MP who is helping to represent Thameslink stations.”

The fund was announced previously by the Secretary of State for Transport who subsequently nominated Henry Smith and two other MPs covered by GTR routes to help oversee the programme. Henry is keen to ensure that decisions on how the fund is to be spent should be made at as local a level as possible.

Further information about the fund can be found at: www.passengerbenefitfund.co.uk