After promising that customers will be automatically refunded for delays on the network, Southern Rail announced that it would also be reinstating 119 services.
Southern cancelled 341 services on 11 July in an attempt to provide a more realistic service following unprecedented staff sickness levels.
“We know how difficult life has been for our passengers recently and we are sincerely sorry. Our aim has been to bring back as much of the timetable as quickly as we could and for several weeks we've had 5th September as our target to begin the reinstatement of train,” said Govia chief executive Charles Horton.
But the Liberal Democrats were quick to put the news into perspective.
“This is a small step in the right direction but will not provide a quick-fix. 119 services have been restored but 222 still hang in the balance. Strikes are still planned for the 7 and 8 of September and both passengers and staff are still dissatisfied.
“Today’s announcement doesn’t go far enough and Southern still need to address the mess that surrounds them and allows their customers daily misery to continue,” said transport spokeperson Jenny Randerson
The re-instated services will commence on 5 September, two days before a 48-hour walkout on the network is scheduled by the RMT as part of its on-going dispute with the franchise over the role of guards on trains.
“With another RMT strike called for next week, passengers will be dismayed and angry, as we are, that the union has called yet further cynically-orchestrated action to try and scupper this improved service, and cause maximum disruption, damage and delay in the very week when many people go back to work and back to school after the summer break,” said Horton.
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