Train service good - and getting better

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TWO major developments have played a part in the number of passengers using Brighouse Station, according to a rail action group.

Stephen Waring, chairman of Halifax and District Railway Action Group, said the passenger figures for Brighouse Station - up by 22 per cent to almost 180,000 in 2009/10 - were healthy but they would increase more if a faster service to Leeds was provided.

“It just goes to show what can be achieved when services are improved,” he said. “Over the past four years the numbers using Brighouse station have more than doubled. Two developments have played a part in this. First there was the increase in the number of trains stopping at Brighouse then in 2008 the extension of the direct service through the Calder Valley to Manchester one way and to Leeds via Dewsbury the other way.

“We would like to see further improvements with a fast service into Leeds which would see passengers getting into the city from Brighouse in 20 minutes.

“The figures that have just been released do not take into account the introduction of Grand Central trains to London and I would expect that next year’s statistics will reflect that and will look even better for Brighouse.”

The group’s secretary Peter Davies also welcomed the news. “The station is busy most mornings and when the timetable changes we deliver around 1,000 copies to homes in Rastrick and parts of Brighouse. It is encouraging to see the figures are going up and I do hope it continues,” he said.

The total number of rail passengers in Calderdale went up by nearly 6 per cent - about 1,000 a week. The biggest increases were at Brighouse, Hebden Bridge and Todmorden, according to figures from Delta Rail.

A Northern Rail spokesperson said: “Obviously we are delighted that an increasing number of people are choosing to travel by train and through Brighouse station.”