Transport Blog

Bedwyn/Pewsey train cuts - your letter to the Minister

Published by Sam Page on 15 October 2012

The address to write to is:

Rt Hon. Simon Burns MP 
Minister of State for Transport
Department for Transport
Great Minster House
33 Horseferry Rd

Bedwyn Trains Passenger Group suggest you include some of the following points:  

  • We don't accept any reduction in our peak and off peak direct services to Paddington or Reading. Bedwyn has 22/23 weekday calls in each direction at present giving an hourly service for most of the day, with roughly two trains an hour during the peaks. Therefore, any specification which significantly reduces calls or frequency will simply not be acceptable for station users. Of these calls, 12 trains in each direction (just over 50%) run through to and from Paddington.  
  • Bedwyn acts as a railhead for Marlborough and a wide surrounding area.  
  • 66% of users of Bedwyn station travel to or through Paddington.  
  • It's unacceptable to do this to Bedwyn (or Pewsey) when people have built their lives around the direct services.
  • It will hit local economies, communities and house prices.  
  • If they do this they'd better build some big car parks at Newbury and Andover and improve the road systems to handle the traffic pulses that train arrivals / departures create. People do not like changing trains and will prefer to make the first leg by car to a station that is direct to Paddington. The stations between Newbury and Westbury currently spread the load.  
  • It's way off any green agenda they may have.   
  • Why has the DfT removed the perfect solution from the ITT? This was in their previous consultation document where the plan was to run an hourly semi-fast Paddington to Exeter diesel service. This would likely have used the HST stock freed up by electrification of the London / Bristol route. Such a service could call at Paddington, Reading, Newbury, Kintbury, Hungerford, Bedwyn, Pewsey, Westbury, Castle Cary, Taunton, Tiverton Parkway and Exeter. Note this solution is BTPG's preferred solution.   

If you wish you could request electrification to be continued to Bedwyn or Westbury. However, we feel the HST route is more realistic (because the implementation costs are with the train operator c.f. the DfT) and has less of an environmental impact (overhead gantries and replacement of bridges).  

You can also sign the Pewsey Train Watch petition, here...