First Hull Trains, the open-access rail operator, has secured a three-year extension to its contract to allow it to continue to run its direct services from Hull to London Kings Cross until 2019.  The news comes on the back of an unprecedented year in 2014 for the rail operator which has simultaneously announced strong growth in passenger numbers and exceptional satisfaction scores from its customers.

Will Dunnett, managing director at First Hull Trains says: “We’re delighted to be able to continue providing industry-leading rail services to our customers until 2019. It’s another welcome boost for Hull, and great news both for our employees and for our customers who are at the heart of our operation. We will continue to keep introducing passenger benefits to ensure we are delivering better, improved services.”

Last year, First Hull Trains saw record growth of 6.7% – well above the ORR figure for the long-distance sector – with 21,000 more passenger journeys than in the same quarter last year.

Mr Dunnett attributes this to a range of factors from the changing economy, to the convenience and comfort of rail travel. He said: “During the past few years, First Hull Trains has invested around £5million in its fleet and taken the maintenance of its fleet in-house which has helped improve reliability and sustainability.”

First Hull Trains delivered a number of industry firsts in 2014, including the launch of free single-sign-up Wi-Fi across all carriages not just first-class; on-board cleaners to ensure passenger conveniences are clean at all times and mobile tickets allowing passengers to purchase direct from their mobile, to list just a few. This investment and passenger focus is reaping rewards as shown by the company’s recent score of 96% customer satisfaction which is more than 10% higher than the average score of long distance operators.

Posted: 20/01/2015