Public transport in Harlow and the villages is vital to ensure people can stay connected and travel for their jobs. I strongly welcome the recent investment from Greater Anglia who are working hard to ensure Harlow residents have access to world-class rail services.
Work to upgrade rail services on the Greater Anglia network has now been completed with all services running brand-new trains, including both suburban and commuter routes. This major investment has already increased passenger capacity and means travellers have access to air conditioning, Wi-Fi and plugs to make their journeys even more comfortable. These new trains also use new and advanced technologies to improve the punctuality on the service which is now set at 93.5% compared to a national average of 89.6%.
I understand the concerns and frustrations of residents about recent industrial action on the railways. I know the new Secretary of State for Transport is committed to tackling this but in the meantime, Greater Anglia have confirmed that any affected tickets will be valid for 1 day before, and 2 days after, the original date of travel, offering passengers greater flexibility. Where passengers no longer wish to travel, a full refund is available.
Finally, I am grateful to Greater Anglia for their ongoing support of local employers. For example, Greater Anglia use Harlow-based firm Land Sheriffs who provide the network with additional security, preventing anti-social behaviour, keeping passengers safe and ensuring stations and infrastructure are fit-for-purpose.