Virgin Trains reacted to the announcement by the ORR on NR long-distance performance by saying: "Clearly the infrastructure performance of the West Coast Mainline continues to be unacceptable and this has had a major impact on Virgin Trains' customers and those of other operators, who have seen punctuality fall well below expected levels.
We have repeatedly told the ORR and NR we must have a reliable infrastructure if we are to continue the remarkable growth of recent years, when we have seen the number of customers double to 30million. Anything short of this will affect the potential of the West Coast Mainline to continue its success."
“We welcome the ORR's action to focus NR's attention on long-distance routes and press for urgently-needed improvements. However, we are disappointed that there is no focus on immediate improvement, as we and our customers want to see short-term progress, especially as the Olympics and Paralympics will be a showcase for the industry. The problem has been highlighted in recent days as improved weather has ruined performance through heat-related delays with some days being at around 60 per cent punctuality. Also, Network Rail will only achieve its 2014 target if there is immediate improvement.
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