Surbiton rezoning case will be heard if it is 'sensible', transport minister says (From Surrey Comet)
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Transport minister says government would hear Surbiton rezoning case
The government would consider shifting Surbiton to fare zone five if a "sensible" case was made, a transport minister has said.
Stephen Hammond, the Conservative MP for Wimbledon, visited Surbiton on Saturday to hear the views of residents and local Conservatives on transport issues.
He said: "If the campaign is sensibly-made the government will look at it."
The issue is likely to come up in next year’s council elections, activists said.
Kingston and Surbiton's MP Ed Davey has campaigned for years to have the station rezoned.
Mr Hammond also acknowledged the problems commuters face when travelling from Surbiton and Chessington into London, and vowed to make sure maintenance was done on time.
He said: “The government will hold National Rail to account so the communities of Chessington, the communities of Surbiton, and the people of this borough get the service they have the right to expect.
“There is nothing more frustrating than a Monday morning, and turning up, and engineering works are overrunning.
“There is an upgrade programme going on, but they need to keep doing it and do it on time.”
Mr Hammond with Surbiton Conservatives Mark Pengelly and Ben Howlett.
An informal survey by the Surrey Comet found that four-fifths of tweets to South West Trains about Surbiton in August were negative.
The commuter service from Chessington is a “life-line” for people in that part of the borough, Mr Hammond added.
His train to Surbiton on Saturday arrived on time, he said.
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