In response to a letter from Herts County Council (HCC), St Albans MP, Anne Main, and Watford MP, Richard Harrington, the Transport Secretary has confirmed that Network Rail and HCC have agreed to ‘undertake further development of options for a 30 minute frequency’ service on the Abbey Line.

In the same week that the Abbey Line has been experiencing problems with the reliability of the Class 319 carriages, and problems with leaves on the track, the St Albans MP said,

I understand the frustration passengers have experienced lately on the Abbey Line. The service needs investment.

For too long it’s been a Cinderella service. It’s not delivering real connectivity, and it’s not fulfilling the potential the line has to free up capacity in other areas.

I am really pleased at the Secretary of State’s reply to our letter. I have been calling for upgrades to this service for some time. When the former Transport Minister, Lord Adonis, announced new investment, we had high hopes for a better service. Hopefully now we will finally see some much-needed improvements on the line.

The Abbey Flyer Users’ Group have done some excellent work in lobbying for upgrades. More frequent trains would hopefully have benefits at both ends, in St Albans and Watford, but also improve the connectivity to and from London.

The Abbey Line was an issue that was raised during the election. Indeed, I pledged to continue my work lobbying for improvements on the line, so I was delighted by the minister’s positive response.