A COMMUTER has slammed a ‘ridiculous’ decision to scrap trains departing Basingstoke for a major London hub in a key 90-minute period during the morning rush hour.

On Sunday the timetable for trains at Basingstoke Railway Station will change, with some South Western Railway (SWR) services to miss calling at some stops and other times changing completely.

Commuter Edward Marsh travels to Clapham Junction station every weekday morning on the 6.51am service from SWR to get to work in Wimbledon.

But after the timetable change, to get directly to Clapham Junction, he will need to get a service at 6.36am or wait until 8.16am, which arrives long after most office hours begin.

Mr Marsh, and other commuters, will be able to travel into London Waterloo and then change trains, but he has said this will cost more.

Currently, before the timetable changes, there are two trains which depart Basingstoke and stop at Clapham Junction before most office hours begin - 6.35am and 6.51am.

Mr Marsh said: “All the other trains at that time go to London Waterloo, which is more expensive if you have a season ticket, given that you have to change there to get to Clapham.

“Many commuters already get the 06.51 service to Clapham Junction, and this will have a massive knock-on effect.

“It is ridiculous that there are no commuter trains in the rush hour in the morning going to Clapham Junction, there won’t even be the chance to change at Woking.

“They are overlooking the point here.”

A SWR spokesperson said: “Our customers and stakeholders have consistently told us that they want faster trains into London during peak hours.

“In order to achieve this in the new timetable, we have had to reduce the number of stops at some stations.

“There will still be five peak morning services departing from Basingstoke towards Waterloo, arriving before 10.00.

“To mitigate any potential crowding issues due to the loss of the 06.51 service, we have added the 06.27 to help boost capacity and support the existing 06.35 service.”