As Watford Junction passengers know, the station is outdated, overcrowded and the access arrangements are not fit for purpose. We want to see better drop off and pick up, better car and bicycle parking provision, a new forecourt, more food and retail outlets and another access point to the station. I'm pleased that we now have a spending commitment for vital improvements and I plan to see it through.
I am working with local stakeholders, Network Rail and Ministers at the Department for Transport and hope that we can break ground on the redevelopment of Watford Junction soon. With footfall having more than doubled in the last 10 years, its redevelopment is even more urgent.
On top of that, I want to see better trains services to and from London and investment in the Abbey Line. We have already secured increased frequency on the Overground services (4 Trains an hour!) and a new later running service on the Abbey Line.
I'm delighted that my campaign for a better deal on train services was successful and a new franchise was finally agreed in 2017.
The Department for Transport has confirmed that nearly £1bn will be invested on the West Coast Main Line to improve services, including more frequent services on evenings and weekends, as well as upgraded trains.
It’s also been confirmed that passengers will get free Wi-Fi on all mainline services by the end of 2019, charging points on all London services, compensation if trains are delayed more than 15 minutes, and improved access for disabled passengers.
The Abbey Line will have a brand new train, as well as improvements to Sunday services. Passengers travelling between St Albans Abbey and Watford Junction will also be able to pay with a smart card for the first time.