Survey: How have our new trains improved the experience of travelling on a branch line?

Published on: Thursday, 3 August 2023
Last updated: Thursday, 3 August 2023

  • Your journey

We recently worked with our six Community Rail Partnerships to find out how people living and working along our branch lines feel about the new trains now running on those lines.

The results were very positive, and we are delighted that people are finding them more punctual, reliable, comfortable and accessible than the old ones they replaced.

A Greater Anglia train crosses Chappel viaduct

Here is a summary of the survey’s findings:

  • The majority of people (86%) said they prefer the new trains to the old ones. Reasons included more seats, more space, that they feel cleaner and warmer, that they have power sockets and free Wi-Fi, are more comfortable, provide a smoother ride, have improved accessibility and good information screens.
  • 77% said it is easier to get on and off the new trains. For people with accessibility needs, 65% said they find the new trains better for them than the old ones, particularly the Stadler-built trains which feature level boarding, with low floors and a retractable step that bridges the gap between the train and platform.
  • Punctuality has improved to record levels since the introduction of our new trains and 68% of respondents said they have noticed this on their line.
  • 84% say they can work productively on the new trains.
  • 71% say the free Wi-Fi has improved their travelling experience
  • Over three-quarters (76%) are more likely to recommend travelling by train because of their experience using the new trains.

Greater Anglia’s Customer and Community Engagement Manager, Alan Neville, said:

“We’re delighted that our new trains are transforming the travelling experience of passengers using our branch lines.

“The new trains offer a better, more accessible travelling environment, with many more seats, and enable us to deliver a more punctual, reliable, consistent and resilient service. They are also more energy efficient and the bi-mode trains are able to maximise their use of electric power whenever they operate on routes where overhead power is available, minimising their carbon emissions.

“It was always our aim to provide a real, positive step change in service quality for our customers and communities. That is now a reality for customers on all of our routes - Great Eastern, Intercity, Regional, Stansted Express and West Anglia lines – including all of our Community Rail Partnership routes.

“As we complete our £1.4 billion investment programme, we are making rail a high quality, reliable and convenient travel option for our region, ensuring that we recover from the pandemic and play our full part in meeting carbon reduction and net zero targets.”

Additional Notes

This was a small-scale survey promoted through Community Rail Partnership Facebook pages to give an indication of how people using branch lines feel about Greater Anglia’s new trains. 276 responses were received.