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Almost 2,000 TfL Rail services skipped station stops over two years, figures have revealed

PUBLISHED: 13:00 09 May 2018 | UPDATED: 13:05 10 May 2018

A TfL Rail train. Picture: Hammersfan/Wikimedia Commons

A TfL Rail train. Picture: Hammersfan/Wikimedia Commons

Creative Commons - must be attributed

TfL Rail has skipped stops on almost 2,000 services in the past two years to “meet punctuality targets”, a London Assembly member has claimed.

Figures obtained by Keith Prince, assembly member for Havering and Redbridge, has shown that 1,905 services by-passed stations between June 2016 and March 2018 - an average of 46 per month.

In November, a staggering 143 services skipped various stops in just one month.

In total, 1.26per cent of TfL Rail services skipped stations including Romford, Harold Wood, Ilford, Goodmayes and Stratford, over the two-year period.

Mr Prince believes the tactic is being used to keep up the line’s good punctuality record.

The route will form part of the Elizabeth Line in December but there are concerns the practice will continue, impacting some of the 200 million people expected to travel on the new service.

Passengers have previously taken to Twitter to vent their frustration, including one person who waited 40 minutes for a train, only for the driver to pass straight through.

After providing the data about services that skipped stops to Mr Prince, a TfL Rail spokesman boasted about the line’s “industry-leading” punctuality record.

London Assembly member Keith Prince said: “It seems clear to me that TfL Rail are skipping stops at the detriment of passengers purely to tick boxes on its performance record.

“This is a major concern given it is due to service the Elizabeth Line (Crossrail) in December.

“Crossrail is an exciting prospect, but can TfL customers really look forward to it when they could be left stranded waiting for their train?

“The mayor needs to address this with TfL immediately before the Elizabeth Line is launched.

“Passengers should not be left standing on station platforms just because rail bosses want to boast about a good time-keeping record.

“I will be pushing the mayor for answers and look forward to hearing how this will be addressed.”

In response, a TfL spokeswoman said: “It is also completely untrue to suggest stops are missed just to improve reliability figures.

“We of course apologise for the disruption that any cancelled stops cause our customers.

“We always aim to run services as planned and changes only happen as a last resort to prevent delayed services causing longer term disruption.”

For more information about the Elizabeth Line which is due to be launched later this year, visit https://bit.ly/1TCWRDy

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