TRAINS between Sheffield and London will continue to run twice an hour after an agreement was struck between the transport executive and East Midlands Trains.
Concerns had been raised that the current half-hourly service might be halved after the demise of Yorkshire Forward, the regional development body which had provided some of the funding.
But South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive and operator EMT have now reached a funding deal that will see the service maintained until at least March 2015.
The half-hourly service, which runs from Monday to Saturday during daytime, was introduced in December 2009 and has generated over 40,000 additional passenger journeys per year.
David Young, SYPTE Deputy Interim Director General, said: “We are very pleased that this important service is being retained at its present frequency for at least two more years.
“A fast, regular train service between Sheffield and London is important if our city region is to remain competitive with other areas. It has proved very popular since being introduced and we are confident that journey time improvements will see it carry even more passengers in the future.”
Neil Mickelthwaite, Customer Service and Commercial Director for East Midlands Trains, said: “Sheffield is one of the UK’s most important cities and East Midlands Trains is proud to serve it. We are excited about the developments in the future, the line speed improvements and the electrification of the Midland Mainline route.
The current two hours seven minute journey should be reduced further this year when work to relieve bottlenecks takes place.