Hounslow Council has expressed extreme disappointment at the Strategic Rail Authority�s (SRA) decision to terminate the service between Basingstoke and East Anglia, stopping in Brentford and Feltham, providing residents and commuters with a valuable service to north and east London.

The SRA made the decision to stop the service without consulting the Council and without any prior warning. The Council worked hard with the railway company Anglia Crosslink and local employers such as GlaxoSmith Kline to provide improved public transport for the Brentford area. Brentford is home to many large businesses mostly located along the A4 and is only serviced by half hourly trains during peak time to and from Waterloo.

The Council has been lobbying some time for improved transport links to the area and this additional rail link to the north and east was introduced in 2000 and started stopping in Brentford in June 2001.

The SRA has decided to axe the service because not enough people use it. However the Council believes that few people use the service because it is infrequent, poorly run with random stopping patterns and wasn�t publicised or marketed properly.

Cllr Ruth Cadbury, Executive member for Cleaner Greener Neighbourhoods, expressed her frustrations at the SRA�s decision: �We have asked the SRA to reconsider their decision. Surely the way forward is not to withdraw train services but to provide a frequent, reliable and safe service to enable people to commute easily. Our aim is to improve public transport to give people a viable alternative to the car. Withdrawing or reducing services is just not an option.�

The Council has also expressed concern that existing North London Line trains from Gunnersbury Station in Chiswick will become overloaded as a result.