The Winchester & Chandler's Ford constituency is served by strong rail links to Southampton and the West Country but also into London Waterloo.
However, the popularity of rail travel on one of the busiest commuter routes in Europe has placed huge strain on the service which, for some commuters, ranks among the most expensive in the entire country.
Over 5m people use Winchester stations (including Winchester itself, Shawford and Micheldever) every year, many of them as commuters, and numbers continue to rise sharply.
Summer 2017 saw big changes as the South Western Franchise moved from Stagecoach (South West Trains) to First Group operating as South Western Railway. The new operator took over during the major Waterloo works which saw Network Rail and the DfT deliver £800 million of investment into the Wessex Route through the Waterloo & South West Upgrade.
Shortly after the RMT Trade Union announced a series of strikes over the issue of on-train guards which Winchester MP Steve Brine said were 'politically motivated' and would be met with 'despair' by his constituents.
An initial burst of strike action took place in early January 2018 and a second wave at the end of March/start of April 2018. More are planned for Spring 2018.
LATEST UPDATE : SWR Timetable Consultation - see the report of the outcome and how changes taking effect in December 2018 could affect our area. Download a copy of Steve Brine's response to the consultation here.
Local MP Steve Brine made improving rail services one of his clear priorities after first being elected in May 2010 and has forged strong links with train operators as well as Network Rail and successive Ministers. This has led to a series of improvements for local rail users ...
Key moments >
Building a bigger railway >
Steve is clear the real work lies ahead as figures show the number of passenger journeys on the Wessex route has more than doubled in the past twenty years, from 108 million in 1996 to around 234 million each year in 2017. The number of journeys is expected to increase by a further 40% by 2043. Combined with an existing 20% over-crowding, this means an increase in capacity of 60% is required.
Steve has been clear that this challenge can only be met by major infrastructure investment and a joined-up approach between Government, Network Rail, the Office of Road and Rail as well a local councils and other groups such as our Local Enterprise Partnerships.
Steve meets regularly with Network Rail and is backing major projects which, although miles up the line away from Winchester, hold the key to addressing the capacity issues his constituents face each day. This includes the proposed Woking flyover which Steve recently wrote to the ORR and Secretary of State to support.
Over the years, Steve has spoken up consistently for his constituents on the issue including at a House of Commons debate in December 2014, a special rail summit at Hampshire County Council in January 2015 and a second Parliamentary debate in October 2015.
Smart ticketing >
Steve Brine has also campaigned consistently for the introduction of 'smart ticketing' on our network which can pave the way for the long-awaited and much-needed part-time season ticket. Steve's campaign came good when both were included in the 2015 Conservative manifesto.
More information ...
Do you have a local issue you would like to campaign on alongside Steve Brine? Get in touch today - see here.