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Southeastern among worst train companies nationwide for customer satisfaction according to new survey

PUBLISHED: 14:27 20 June 2013 | UPDATED: 16:12 21 June 2013

Southeastern

Southeastern

Archant

Passengers on Southeastern railway services are among the most dissatisfied in the country, according to the latest customer satisfaction survey results released yesterday (June 19).

Overall satisfaction stood at 78 per cent for the survey carried out by Passenger Focus and conducted between January and March this year.

Only three train companies nationwide - Northern, First Capital Connect and Greater Anglia - recorded worse scores than Southeastern, which runs train services in south-east London and Kent.

This was a drop of six per cent from the results produced for autumn 2012 and only 31 per cent of people are happy with what they are paying to use Southeastern trains, the worst in the country.

There was also a significant drop in people satisfied with reliability (85 per cent to 77 per cent) but the company did show improvements in some areas, such as the toilet facilities and the availability of staff.

Southeastern user Darren Burns sent in a number of complaints he has with services, including: “They are over priced and should be in line with the rest of Europe public transport; the trains are filthy and they are unreliable and lame excuses are used day in day out.”

Spokeswoman for the company Alison Nolan said: “Customer satisfaction is a top of mind priority for us and it’s disappointing, but not unexpected, that overall satisfaction has dipped this time around as prolonged snow and icy weather conditions affected our services through the winter and well into mid-March this year.

“We are pleased that passengers have noticed an improvement to some aspects of our service such as our toilet facilities, car parks, customer information at stations and personal safety and security – as we’ve been working hard across the board to deliver these improvements.”

Southeastern users do not believe the weather is an adequate excuse for the service.

Steven Emberson, from Gravesend, said: “The weather hasn’t been bad compared to previous years. Terrible service, bigger prices.”

Passenger Focus chief executive Anthony Smith said: “Passengers are now the main overall funder of Great Britain’s railway, so it is vital that their key needs are met.

“Given that performance is the key factor that underpins most passengers’ general view of the railway, train companies and Network Rail must keep striving to get more trains on time.”

What do you think about Southeastern services? Contact the news room on 0208 477 3858 or email robin.cottle@archant.co.uk.

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