Jardine challenges Government on new Avanti rail contract

20 Sep 2023

Edinburgh West MP Christine Jardine has called on the Government to keep pressure on Avanti West Coast after they were awarded a new contract for a minimum of three years.

The decision follows a period of frequent delays, with less than half of Avanti trains arriving on time between August 2022 and 2023.

Cancellations at the company also jumped from 3.1% of trains in 2021-22, to over 12% in 2022-23.

Avanti’s new contract was awarded after the company reported fewer delays and cancellations, after the Government imposed a recovery plan in March.

Whilst Christine “cautiously” welcomes these improvements, she urged the Government to continue to push Avanti West Coast for improved punctuality and a better service for Haymarket station in Edinburgh West.

Following the announcement, Christine said:

“I cautiously welcome the news that Avanti West Coast’s performance continues to improve.

“With Avanti’s dismal record of delays, and cancellations from other operators, my constituents have seen their travel plans derailed far too often in recent months.

“Whilst the news that punctuality is moving in the right direction is welcome, this is surely the least we should expect from our railway network, and more must be done.

“I hope the Government will continue work closely with Avanti West Coast to improve their service, and I will continue to hold them to account so my constituents finally get the service they deserve.”


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