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Anger over halting of rail improvement plans

Stations like Kettering in Northamptonshire would have benefited from electrification of the line. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Plans to electrify the Midland mainline rail route between Bedford and the East Midlands have been put on hold by the Government.

The Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin told MPs the planned upgrade is being paused to allow Network Rail to concentrate on other projects

The Conservatives had promised the electrification would be completed by 2020 and even had a pledge in their General Election manifesto.

Click below to watch a report by ITV News Anglia's Political Correspondent Emma Hutchinson

Northants MPs 'disappointed' with delay to rail upgrade

Kettering MP Philip Hollobone and Wellingborough MP Peter Bone. Credit: ITV News

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Electrification of rail lines in Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire put on hold

Electrification of rail lines in Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire put on hold Credit: Edward Smith/EMPICS

A £38 billion five year plan to overhaul Britain's railways is being "reset" because it is "costing more and taking longer", Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin has told MPs.

Electrification work will be "paused" on the Midland mainline.

"On the Midland mainline, better services can be delivered on that line before electrification with things such as speed improvement works.

"So work on electrification will be paused. I want it to be done and done well. It will be part of our future plans for the route.

– Patrick McLoughlin, Transport Secretary

Dip in rail passenger satisfaction levels

There's been a big dip in rail passenger satisfaction levels for Abellio Greater Anglia. Credit: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

Rail passenger satisfaction levels have dipped particularly on the trains run by Abellio Greater Anglia in the East of England.

The proportion of passengers satisfied with their journey overall has fallen from 82% in spring 2014 to 80% in spring 2015, a survey of 31,000 rail travellers by Transport Focus (formerly Passenger Focus) showed.

The satisfaction rating for Greater Anglia was at 75% down from 80% in autumn 2014. Among the higher scorers was East Coast with 94% of passengers satisfied.

East Midlands Train delays

Delays on East Midlands trains Credit: ITV News

Services on East Midlands Trains between Bedford and London are disrupted because of overhead line problems.

A spokesperson for East Midlands Trains said,"Services travelling between Bedford and Luton are experiencing delays thismorning (Saturday 10 May) due to an overhanging wire between Bedford andLeagrave which is affecting a number of train operators.

"Rail replacement buses are being put into place but passengers are advisedto check before they travel. Tickets can be used on any reasonable routeson London Buses and London Underground and tickets are being accepted onEast Coast and Virgin trains.

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Petition for more late trains

There are calls for later train services on the Bittern Line, which serves north Norfolk.

More than 300 people have signed a petition backing the call. At the moment the last train runs before 11pm.

Passengers have complained that they’ve had to leave events in Norwich early to catch the train home to places like Sheringham, Cromer and North Walsham.

Train company shortlisted for international wards

c2c hopes to win at the European Rail Congress Awards

National Express train operator c2c has been shortlisted for two prestigious international awards in the inaugural European Rail Congress Awards.

c2c, which runs trains from Fenchurch Street to east London and south Essex, has been shortlisted for the European Commuter Operator of the Year award, with other finalists including train companies from France and Austria.

Also Thorpe Bay station in Essex has been shortlisted for the Small European Station of the Year award, following its £650,000 transformation last year into c2c’s flagship first “smart station”. It faces competition in the final round from the likes of the City Airport Terminal in Vienna.

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