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Kings Langley commuter angered by London Midland's decision to cut number of train carriages
A Kings Langley commuter has hit out at London Midland’s decision to reduce the size of peak time commuter trains while the number of people using the station continues to grow.
London Midland trains passing through Kings Langley station will be a third smaller until August 23 while the rail company uses the extra carriages to help train 61 new drivers.
Services between Milton Keynes and London will be affected but the train operator has said it has tried to minimise this to no more than two peak time trains in each direction.
John Healy, who travels from Kings Langley to London every day, said: "One of the services affected is the 7.27am from Kings Langley which is normally a 12 car train, and often does not have many seats spare, and is one of the busiest services of day, so why this train?
"This service stops at Watford, Bushey and Harrow Wealdstone - why can’t they trim their fast services which they have publically been promoting to keep capacity to the normal, on the slower Tring service.
"Statistics state that commuters from Kings Langley are paying more per mile than say commuters who live in Milton Keynes & Northampton, the facts are all there in black and white."
His comments come as it was announced this week passengers were due to be hit with an above-inflation average fare rise of 4.1 percent.
Also over the past 12 months two new housing estates have been completed in Kings Langley and Apsley, meaning the population of the village and number of London commuters is likely to grow.
Mr Healy said estate agents were using the village’s proximity and rail links to the capital to entice more commuters into Kings Langley.
He added: "The local housing price is targeted at a London audience."
London Midland has been under pressure from Watford’s MP Richard Harrington to improve its service in light of ever-increasing ticket prices.
Mr Healy said the service was also diminishing to the village, which is on the same London Euston line that runs through Watford Junction and Bushey.
He added: "A number of commuters from Kings Langley no longer use the 8.02 but take the 7.27 instead, so London Midland now just rub it in by reducing the carriages."
A London Midland spokesperson said: "All the lines are busy and the driver training is necessary. It will mean more trains being available in the long run."
Tom Joyner, operations director at London Midland, said: "Our new drivers need to learn about the trains they will be responsible for. To do this we have chosen the quietest time of the year to take some carriages out of service.
"While it does mean, regrettably, some passengers may find it harder to find a seat on some busy trains this month all passengers will benefit from us having extra drivers available later this year."
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