Pevensey’s MP has welcomed the Government's announcement that constituents who have had to endure months of poor performance on Southern are to be repaid the equivalent of a month's travel for the disruption caused to journeys.
Writing to Huw Merriman, Chris Grayling, the Secretary of State for Transport, said, "I know you, like me, commute to work by train, and have done so for many years. I understand how important it is for your constituents to have a train service you can depend on. While nothing can truly make up for what you and your constituents have had to endure, I hope this goes some way to showing that the Government is on their side."
Southern will contact passengers to inform them what is owed and to arrange payment, which can be made either directly to bank accounts or via vouchers. Compensation will be made available to annual season ticket holders in addition to those who have purchased quarterly, monthly and weekly tickets. In addition, all passengers will, from 11 December, be eligible for compensation for any train delayed by 15mins or longer rather than the current 30 minutes.
Huw, along with the Home Secretary, Amber Rubb, lobbied the Department of Transport in recent months to provide a substantial compensation package for commuters who have suffered severe disruption to their daily journeys due to the industrial action and difficulties involved with the redevelopment of London Bridge.
Huw said, "We wrote to local employers in November to promise them that we would not only press the unions to end this futile and damaging industrial action but would push for compensation for the misery suffered by commuters who have been left to face the consequences. I am delighted that compensation has now been secured but I am conscious that this highlights how much this dispute is costing our essential public services at a time when money is tight. I would urge all local constituents to press the unions as to why they are striking when jobs and pay are guaranteed and the new technology has been signed off by the Rail Regulator as safe."