Hitchin & Harpenden’s rail service among the worst in Britain

The Liberal Democrats have called for urgent action to improve rail services at both Hitchin and Harpenden stations after new data reveals that they have some of the worst service levels in Britain.



Over the last four weeks, the service at both stations has been ranked in the bottom 20% nationally in terms of performance despite the fact that they are among the busiest in the country.

According to rail monitoring service ontimetrains.co.uk, out of the 2,621 stations on the entire rail network Hitchin ranked 2,160 in terms of performance based on service punctuality and cancellation frequency. Harpenden fared even worse with a ranking of only 2,271. At both stations during that period around one in every four trains has either been cancelled or run at least ten minutes late. This disruption continues to occur despite both stations being among the top 10% busiest commuter stations nationally.


Liberal Democrats Parliamentary Candidate for Hitchin & Harpenden, and Hitchin Councillor Sam Collins said: “This situation has been going on far too long. Ever since the fundamentally flawed timetable was introduced in 2018 both of our stations have suffered disproportionately with a poor rail service, and recently things have been getting much worse. We need to see urgent action from both the rail operators and Network Rail in order to address these ongoing issues.

The Liberal Democrats have a wide-ranging plan to improve rail services nationally and locally to get more people using the railways and out of their cars. We would invest in upgrading commuting lines and ticketing systems while improving the franchising process and accountability. We would also make the railways greener by expanding electrification and reducing the use of diesel trains.

Unfortunately the Government and local MP’s seem to have little or no interest in the plight of commuters and rail users locally as they are far too focussed on the Conservative Leadership campaign and trying to secure themselves plum jobs. Yet again people in our area are being taken for granted by the Conservatives. 

People’s careers and day to day lives rely on our train services, and this seemingly never ending disruption is having a daily impact on people that is simply unacceptable.”

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