The performance of First Capital Connect (FCC) is to be scrutinised by St Albans City and District Council’s Local Services Scrutiny Committee on 27 September 2012.
Senior management from FCC and Network Rail will be questioned at the meeting on the progress they have made since they met the Committee in January 2012.
At that meeting in January, the Committee raised with management of both companies a number of issues relating to the Thameslink Service and local stations. It was particularly concerned about delays to the service, the level of information provided to passengers during periods of disruption and the clarity of the compensation policy. The Committee also raised the issue of car park charges at St Albans City and Harpenden Stations.
The Committee asked FCC and Network Rail to return in six months time to review progress on these issues on 27 September.
Since then a number of other issues have arisen which the Committee will also be reviewing with senior management from FCC and Network Rail. These include parking provision for people with disabilities at Harpenden and St Albans City Stations and road safety at Harpenden Station. Problems with car parking ticket machines and disruption to services caused by cable theft in the Bedford area will also be addressed.
Councillor Robert Donald, Chair of Local Services Scrutiny Committee, said: “The Committee agreed with FFC and Network Rail at its last meeting in January that they would report back to us on several matters of concern in September. These included a transparent and consistent public compensation policy, further communication improvements with passengers when there are delays and car parking charges at St Albans City and Harpenden stations.
“Many of our residents are commuters and they rely on the Thameslink Service to get them to and from work daily in London as efficiently, speedily and comfortably as possible. They pay ever increasing fares and expect and deserve better customer care when there are delays and clarity over their compensation rights.
“Our committee is part of the Council’s ongoing scrutiny of both FCC and Network Rail’s service, management and infrastructure performance. We are trying to improve local rail services through our regular meetings with them and by consistently following up the issues raised each time.
“We will, however, be asking for a report from the train operators as well on other issues that have occurred during the year to date, particularly, the removal of a car park ticket machine at St Albans City Station and disruptions caused by cable theft in the Bedford area recently.
“If any residents have any points they wish to make on these issues or any other concerns about the Thameslink Service or local rail stations in the last six months, please contact the Scrutiny Officer, Catherine Comfort.
“The Committee will then be able to take these issues into account when we quiz senior management from FCC and Network Rail at this meeting.”
The Committee would like to hear from local residents with their views about the service provided by both companies by 10 September. Anyone who wishes to raise any issues can email firstname.lastname@example.org or write to Catherine Comfort, Scrutiny Support Officer, St Albans City and District Council, Council Offices, Civic Centre. Questions will either be addressed at the meeting or receive a written response.
The meeting on 27 September will be open to the public. If you are unable to attend the meeting in person, you can view a webcast
of the meeting live or at a later date on the Council’s website.
for the meeting will be available shortly on the Council’s website.
Cllr Robert Donald, Chair of the Overview and Scrutiny (Public Services) Committee
Tel: 01727 841647
Contact for the press:
Media and Internal Communications Officer
St Albans City and District Council
Tel: 01727 819317
Information about the role of the Local Services Scrutiny Committee
, formerly the Overview and Scrutiny (Public Services) Committee, is available on the Council’s website.