Transport minister launches furious rant after being left behind by train
George Freeman claimed a platform worker ‘smirked’ after refusing to hold up a train after a connecting service was delayed.
A transport minister has launched a furious rant after a platform worker instructed a train to depart, despite seeing him running towards it.
George Freeman said he was left “stranded for an hour” because the 9.09am Greater Anglia service from Cambridge to Attleborough on Tuesday morning was not held up for him.
The Tory MP described how he was one of five passengers who “sprinted” along the platform after a connecting service from London King’s Cross was delayed.
So. Not good @greateranglia. You knew the connecting train was late. Your guard could see us running. As 5 of us passengers sprinted to catch the 9.09, the guard watched us running, closed the doors, waved off the train, leaving us stranded for an hour, then smirked & ignored us. pic.twitter.com/ppRtbBRmY2— George Freeman MP (@GeorgeFreemanMP) August 6, 2019
He expressed his frustration in a series of tweets to Greater Anglia, stating that the member of staff responsible for dispatching trains could see them running but chose to close the doors and instruct the driver to depart.
The worker then “smirked and ignored us”, the MP for Mid Norfolk added.
Greater Anglia replied that “in most cases” it cannot hold trains when services run by other operators are late.
Not even for 15 seconds when passengers from a connection are AT THE DOOR?!— George Freeman MP (@GeorgeFreemanMP) August 6, 2019
Mr Freeman responded: “Not even for 15 seconds when passengers from a connection are AT THE DOOR?!”
The company apologised and accepted “there should have been some discretion”.
The MP said it was a “huge honour” when he was appointed as a transport minister by Prime Minister Boris Johnson last month.
His portfolio includes technology, innovation, decarbonisation and connectivity.