Direct Blackpool to London service agreed

The Office of Rail Regulation has approved Virgin Trains to operate a direct service from Blackpool to London Euston.

The service will start in December and is part of a range of service improvements on the West Coast Main Line route that coincide with the award of Virgin Trains' extended franchise.

Commuters from Blackpool North will have access to daily weekday trips to London Euston. The service will depart at 5.25am and is due to call at Kirkham & Wesham, Poulton le Flyde, Preston, Wigan North Western, Warrington Bank Quay, Crewe and Nuneaton before arriving in London at 8.34am. The return service from London Euston departs at 4.33pm and arrives back in Blackpool at 7.31pm.

The Blackpool operation will begin on Monday 15 December 2014.

Phil Whittingham, lead executive of Virgin Trains, said: "It's an exciting time for everyone involved with Virgin Trains. With our extended franchise we are able to get back to doing what we do best, offering new journey opportunities whilst still delivering the same high standards of service to our customers.

"We have worked hard with our industry partners to gain the approval for these new services. Special thanks must go to the ORR, Network Rail and the Department for Transport. We thank them all for this big vote of confidence."

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