New Corby service will end two-hour train wait

Corby train station
Corby train station
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Campaigners have won their four-year battle for an additional rail service from Corby to London.

East Midlands Trains is to introduce a 10.16am train, ending the two-hour gap in the timetable.

Currently there is no service to London between 9.17am and 11.17am.

The new winter timetable will start on December 8 and will include free wi-fi for first class passengers.

A spokeswoman for East Midlands Trains said: “We have taken the decision that, from that date, the existing 10.27am service from Kettering to London will start from Corby Station at 10.16am.

“This service has wi-fi on board, which is provided free to first class passengers, and for a small fee to standard class passengers.

“We are looking forward to introducing this new link for people in Corby and we hope they will enjoy using it.”

David Fursdon, a member of the Friends of Corby Station Group and the East Midlands branch of Railfuture, has campaign for the additional morning service since Corby station re-opened in April 2009.

He said: “We have lobbied for this for more than four years. We persevered and now we have been successful.

“I’m delighted that the gap in the morning timetable is going to be filled.

“It was inconvenient for passengers and it’s good news that the additional service is being introduced.”

Passenger figures for Corby station have increased every year since the station re-opened, reaching 200,000 for last year.

Mr Fursdon said: “The latest figures haven’t been released yet but I know from visiting the station that the number of people using it is continuing to increase dramatically.

“People say it is an excellent service to the capital.”

Now the extra morning service is being introduced, rail campaigners will continue to press for an improved northbound connection at Kettering, which, according to Mr Fursdon, is still the top complaint by Corby passengers.

He said: “For example, the 9.17am train from Corby to London arrives at Kettering as the 9.27am service to Leicester is pulling out which means travellers then have an hour’s wait. The situation could not be worse. Passenger growth remains good at Corby but the poor connections for Kettering northbound services is restricting further increase in numbers.

“From the feedback we are getting this problem will be addressed with the electrified services which is still three or four years off.

“Work has just been completed at Manton Junction where the Corby railway route via Harringworth Viaduct joins the Leicester to Peterborough line.

“The work carried out will allow faster trains to pass through Manton Junction as a result of the improvements to the track and signaling. We will continue to campaign for improvements.”

Mr Furdson is already planning celebrations to mark the fifth anniversary of the station’s re-opening next year.