Decision not to replace 'disgusting' trains criticised (From East London and West Essex Guardian Series)
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Decision not to replace 'disgusting' trains running through Waltham Forest criticised
Commuters have criticised a decision not to replace “disgusting” trains for three years on a major line through Waltham Forest.
This week Transport for London (TfL) announced there will be a delay in replacing the fleet on the line between Chingford and Liverpool Street when it becomes part of the Overground network in May next year.
TfL has said all trains will be cleaned but passengers claim that this is not enough.
Amy Pearce, 20, of Scholars Road, Chingford, said: “The trains are disgusting.
“When you think of TfL, you think nice, clean, new, so it’s disappointing that they won’t provide even a handful of new trains.
Tony Breshi, who has run New Express in the station with his wife for seven years, said that customers regularly complain about the trains.
“They are pretty rubbish,” he said.
“Especially in the winter there are problems with the doors, they won’t shut or they get stuck.
“To be honest the trains have been more reliable since Abellio took over. They are very old trains, they look dirty inside.”
Sean McGinty, 75, agreed some of the trains were in a poor condition, but said passengers should travel more responsibly.
He said: “Some are good, some are bad. There are some that are very, very bad.
“They should be replaced but it is people that are the problem. Even if they replace them the passengers will fill them with rubbish.”
Staff at the station expressed surprise that new trains were not planned for three years.
They told The Guardian they had heard TfL introduce around 30 new trains.
Statistics on the platform tell customers that the trains are performing well, despite their age.
A billboard shows 92.89 percent of all trains run by Abellio are on time and only 1.28 per cent of trains are significantly late or cancelled.
The contract to run the Overground network is due to be put out to tender in November 2016.
Fares on the Chingford to Liverpool Street line, which includes stations in Highams Park and Walthamstow, will not increase immediately following the takeover, but could rise following a planned review a few months later.
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