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More frequent rail service sought

PUBLISHED: 09:48 12 January 2010 | UPDATED: 15:55 06 July 2010

A PARLIAMENTARY candidate in north Suffolk is calling for the government to insist on better services from the train operator that will run services between Lowestoft and London.

A PARLIAMENTARY candidate in north Suffolk is calling for the government to insist on better services from the train operator that will run services between Lowestoft and London.

Adam Leeder is asking the government to make it a condition of any new franchise that will replace National Express East Anglia next year to include an hourly Lowestoft-Ipswich service.

Mr Leeder, who is Labour's parliamentary candidate for Suffolk Coastal, said passengers want an hourly service between Lowestoft and Ipswich instead of the current timetable, which sees trains run every two hours.

It was reported in November that National Express was stripped of its right to run train services in East Anglia after March 2011.

Government rail minister Chris Mole said that the Department for Transport will assess all stakeholder submissions for the new franchise over the coming months.

Network Rail confirmed that its commitment to creating a passing loop at Beccles remained unchanged since it announced its spending plans last April. The extra stretch of track will let trains pass at Beccles, enabling the train operator to increase the number of trains using the line, and open the door for hourly services on the Lowestoft to Ipswich service. Network Rail is discussing with local authorities how much they will contribute to the project, which will be completed by the end of 2011 at the latest.

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