The survey shows that while overall passenger satisfaction continues to be as high (80 per cent) as in the same period last year, investment in the railway is essential to boost capacity as passenger numbers grow.
Network Rail's upgrades and capacity improvements across the rail network are helping to build a bigger, better railway for passengers and businesses. The Railway Upgrade Plan makes up over two-thirds of Network Rail’s £40bn spending priorities for the five years to 2019 and represents the biggest sustained programme of rail modernisation since the Victorian era.
Satisfaction levels in the latest passenger survey are lower among commuters (72 per cent) and those in London and the South East (78 per cent). The most satisfied passengers are in Scotland (88 per cent).
Punctuality and delays are the main reasons for passengers being satisfied or dissatisfied, the survey reveals.
"We know that there is more to do to keep improving and to give passengers the excellent services they expect. Our customers must be at the heart of everything we do. With ever-growing demand for rail, large parts of the railway are full. That’s why billions of pounds are being spent to provide much-needed extra capacity and more reliable, modern services which meet our customers’ needs. Everyone in the railway is working hard to create a bigger, better railway for Britain and to make passengers’ journeys better from start to finish." Jacqueline Starr, managing director of Customer Experience at the Rail Delivery Group.
St Pancras is the most popular Network Rail station (95 per cent), while passengers are least satisfied with London Bridge (57 per cent) – reflecting disruption as a result of ongoing improvement work.
Passenger satisfaction with Birmingham New Street, which reopened at the end of 2015 after a major redevelopment, has grown by seven points since last year (to 88 per cent).
"It is really satisfying to see that...we have been able to build on the previous rise we saw after the station reopened last year. This is the first full set of results since the full reopening and gives us a more accurate view of the new facilities and the impact they have had on passengers. However, there is always room for continued improvement and we will continue to strive to provide an even better service to passengers." Patrick Power, Network Rail station manager at Birmingham New Street
The National Rail Passenger Survey is carried out twice a year by Transport Focus, in spring and autumn, with around 30,000 passengers interviewed.
About Network Rail
Network Rail owns, manages and develops Britain’s railway – the 20,000 miles of track, 40,000 bridges and viaducts, and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations (the largest of which we also run). In partnership with train operators we help people take more than 1.6bn journeys by rail every year - double the number of 1996 - and move hundreds of millions of tonnes of freight, saving almost 8m lorry journeys. We’re investing £38bn in the railway by 2019 to deliver more frequent, more reliable, safer services and brighter and better stations.