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  1. ITV Report

Crowding chaos

First Great Western is to spend £29 million pounds converting old buffet cars into commuter carriages in an attempt to reduce overcrowding on their services in the Thames Valley. The company says that an extra 4,500 seats will be added to trains going into London in time for the Olympic games.

“We’ve seen an ever increasing demand for travel on our services. While that demand is gratifying in one respect, it can lead to overcrowding on peak services, which is why we’ve been working for some time to secure additional carriages.

– Mark Hopwood, First Great Western Managing Director

Figures released last year show that 6 of the countries most overcrowded services were on commuter trains from Reading, Oxford and Newbury. An extra 50 coaches are being converted in a specialist warehouse in Edinburgh. The company says the new carriages will be added to the end of existing services in the Thames Valley.

  • 0637 Reading – London Paddington, will be strengthened from 3-cars to 5-cars
  • 1845 London Paddington – Reading, will be strengthened from 3-cars to 5-cars
  • 1815 London Paddington – Oxford, this train was initially strengthened in December 2010, with the added benefit that under this intervention the previous train will be strengthened from 3-cars to 5-cars
  • 0630 Bristol – London Paddington, will be strengthened by using a new super high capacity HST
  • 0740 Reading – London Paddington, will not be strengthened further, but the next service from Slough, a critical point, will be strengthened from 3-cars to 5-cars
  • 0607 Oxford – London Paddington will not be strengthened further, but the next service from Reading, a critical point, will be strengthened from 3-cars to 5-cars
  • 1657 London Paddington – Reading, will be strengthened from 3-cars to 5-cars
  • 0709 Oxford – London Paddington, will be strengthened from a standard 2+8 HST to a new super high capacity HST
  • 0728 Bourne End – London Paddington, will not be strengthened further, but the next service from Maidenhead, a critical point, will be strengthened to a super high capacity 2+8
  • 1718 London Paddington – Oxford, is not strengthened but the next fast service to Oxford at 1722 is strengthened from a 2+7 to a super high capacity 2+8