West Midlands Railway restores additional services between Nuneaton and Leamington Spa
Additional train services will be restored between Nuneaton and Leamington Spa later this month, West Midlands Railway (WMR) has confirmed today.
A reduced timetable, of one train every two hours, has been running between the Warwickshire towns due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on WMR’s traincrew.
From Monday 27 September the number of trains running on the route will increase by more than 40% every weekday, with even more services restored on Saturdays.
Jonny Wiseman, WMR customer experience director, said:
“I would like to thank our customers on the Leamington to Nuneaton route for their patience and understanding while we have been forced to operate a reduced service.
“With more than 25,000 driver training days lost due to the pandemic it has not been possible to run the full timetable but I am pleased we are now able to bring in more peak trains.
“We are working hard to catch up our training programmes and remain committed to restoring the full hourly service on this route as soon as possible.”
Cllr Izzi Seccombe, leader of Warwickshire County Council, said:
“This is wonderful news and shows that, as a county, we are coming back from the effects of the pandemic. The resumption of train services is key to our ambitions as a county council that we provide an infrastructure that gives access to training and employment, that we create and sustain a vibrant economy and that we do so in a sustainable way that protects our environment.
"That is why I am so delighted. More people can now move around the county, stimulating local economies and they can do so without adding to the congestion on our roads. This is a very significant step both in our recovery and in our future ambitions for all of Warwickshire."
Jeremy Wright, MP for Kenilworth and Southam, said:
“I welcome this progress towards a resumption of the pre-Covid service through Kenilworth station, following extensive discussions with West Midlands Railway.
“I look forward to a full resumption of that service and improvements to it, so Kenilworth can reach its full potential to take my constituents reliably where they want to go and bring more visitors to the town.”
The new timetables will be available to view at www.wmr.uk/timetable in coming days.
Notes to editors
- It takes 12 months to train a train driver. Just before the start of the pandemic, West Midlands Trains recruited over 100 extra drivers to make its services more reliable and to cover a spike in retirements in 2021. However, due to pandemic restrictions all driver training was suspended for seven months. Training has recommenced using redesigned ‘Covid-safe’ procedures but these methods are less efficient than traditional teaching. The train company estimates it will take up to a year to fully catch up on its driver training programme.
- Under the revised timetable, an extra eight services will run between Nuneaton and Leamington Spa each weekday from Monday 27 September – an increase of 44% against the current timetable. An extra 10 services will run on Saturdays, representing a 59% increase. Rail replacement buses will continue to supplement the train service.
About West Midlands Trains
For further information on this release, call our press office on 03300 955150 or email [email protected]
West Midlands Trains operates both West Midlands Railway and London Northwestern Railway services.
- London Northwestern Railway services operate between Liverpool and Birmingham, and on the West Coast Main Line to and from London Euston.
- West Midlands Railway services operate to destinations across the West Midlands via Birmingham New Street and Birmingham Snow Hill.
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