The Office of Rail Regulation has released a report that shows between October and December 2013, 402.8million passenger journeys were made, a 4.5% increase on the same period the previous year.
Iain Stewart pictured
, MP for Milton Keynes South and Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Secretary of State for Transport, said: “This is a very positive trend and I am glad to see that government investment is making a real difference.”
The ORR has put the increase down to significant investment in the railway, contributing to growth and more people buying cheaper tickets in advance.
The report showed the opening of new lines and stations were a key factor, along with additional services and trains. Improvements to station facilities including car parking and bicycle storage also had a positive affected on people choosing to travel by rail.
In Milton Keynes investment is continuing in order to improve travelling for commuters.
In December, Virgin Trains announced five new services to stop in Milton Keynes and most recently the council announced £75,000 would be spent on new toilet facilities in the station.
Mr Stewart said: “Although more still needs to be done for commuters in Milton Keynes, there is a significant amount of changes taking place. Virgin Pendolino trains have been lengthened to provide more seats; London Midland will be introducing 40 new carriages and have upgraded their trains to run at 110mph.”
He added, “Over the next five years around £38 billion would have been invested into our existing railways. This is one the biggest ever investments into the network. The government know people are choosing to travel by train and they are keen to keep up with demand.”
The East West Rail line linking Bedford and Milton Keynes with Aylesbury, Bicester and Oxford is due to open in 2017.