New tool allows rail passengers to check recent punctuality of service

Rail passengers can use a new online tool to check the punctuality of specific trains.

The free software, named MyTrainJourney, allows users to check the timings of any service in Britain for up to the past 12 months.

It shows how often a train arrived on time, within 15 minutes of its schedule or was cancelled.

Officials hope the service will help people who have a choice of train routes or rail commuters who are considering moving house.

But the service could lead to more publicity of cases such as the 0729 Brighton to London Victoria train, which made headlines for being late throughout the whole of 2014.

Latest figures from Network Rail (NR) show just 64% of trains arrived at their destination within one minute of their schedule over the past 12 months.

MyTrainJourney was commissioned by the rail industry's National Task Force and developed by the Rail Delivery Group (RDG), which represents NR and train operators.

It can be accessed using a smartphone, tablet or computer.

Paul Maynard, who was appointed rail minister last week, said improving the information given to passengers is a "vital part" of providing better journeys.

He went on: "The industry should do all it can to make sure rail passengers get where they need to go, on time and free from disruption.

"More people are travelling by train than ever before and this initiative by RDG is a welcome move to help ensure passengers have the best possible information when planning their journey."

Chris Burchell, chairman of the National Task Force and head of performance and punctuality at the RDG, said: "We know that every minute counts for our passengers and we want people to have the best information to help them plan their journeys.

"MyTrainJourney now means that customers can check the punctuality of their specific, chosen journey from what happened yesterday up to a year ago, and make informed choices about which train to catch or route to take."