Spelthorne Borough Council has welcomed the announcement by the Department for Transport that it intends to award FirstGroup the contract to operate the South Western rail franchise until at least 2024, in a joint venture with MTR.
FirstGroup has committed to deliver £1.2billion of investment and improve the experience for customers by delivering better trains, more seats and quicker journeys – all good news for the thousands of Spelthorne residents who use the rail network each day for work and leisure.
The Council has also taken the opportunity to reiterate its call for Zone 6 to be extended into the Borough and is supporting the work of the Spelthorne in the Zone campaign group which is meeting with the new rail operator to discuss reclassifying the zones. Currently Zone 6 ends at Feltham meaning oyster cards cannot be used at Spelthorne stations.
Spelthorne Council’s Deputy Chief Executive, Terry Collier, said: “Having a fast and efficient rail service is vitally important for Spelthorne and we hope the planned improvements will mean better journeys for passengers and provide a boost for the local economy. We look forward to working closely with FirstGroup and MTR in the coming months and progressing discussions about bringing Spelthorne into Zone 6.”