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16 April 2014, 07:23 | Updated: 16 April 2014, 08:03
It's been announced this morning more trains will soon run between Cambridge and Stansted Airport.
Rail passengers will benefit from refreshed rolling stock and more services on the Greater Anglia network, including twice as many weekday off peak services between Stansted airport and Cambridge as a result of a new franchise agreement announced today.
Under the agreement the government has reached, Abellio Greater Anglia (AGA) will continue providing services between London Liverpool Street and major towns and cities across Cambridgeshire, Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex for the next 27 months.
Following comments from the public and partners in the rail industry, the government has secured a number of additional rail services in the off-peak period as part of the deal, which will lead to more services on local lines, providing a boost to the region's economy.
It will also mean more services between Cambridge, a global centre of technological expertise, and Stansted Airport, which will boost the city's links with the rest of Europe.
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said:
"This deal means real improvements for passengers on the Greater Anglia network. It means more services and better-equipped trains, including international connections via Stansted Airport to the rest of Europe that the region needs.
"This agreement is further proof that the government's new franchising schedule is on track, is delivering value for money for the tax payer, and is supporting the ongoing multi-billion pound investment programme in our railways."
Commenting on the Direct Award, the Deputy Managing Director and Finance Director Julian Edwards said:
"Today's announcement of a further important suite of service enhancements for passengers adds to the steady flow of improvements delivered since Abellio started operating the franchise. The DfT is to be congratulated on the tough yet fair approach it brought to the Direct Award negotiations. This has resulted in a great deal for both passengers and the taxpayer, and the fact that today's announcement comes several months ahead of the July 2014 start date is a reassuring sign that the Department has regained a firm hold of the franchising timetable."