Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Call for Shepparton rail group

Greater Shepparton City Council has requested the formation of a reference group for the Shepparton to Melbourne train line.

JOHN LEWIS February 3, 2014 4:23am

Shepparton RAILS chairman Michael Welk (right), pictured with Transport Minister Terry Mulder, has backed Greater Shepparton City Council's calls for a reference group for the Shepparton to Melbourne train line.

A request for the establishment of a community reference group for the Shepparton-Melbourne train line has been welcomed by the Shepparton RAILS lobby group.

City of Greater Shepparton Mayor Jenny Houlihan said Greater Shepparton City Council had written to Victorian Transport Minister Terry Mulder requesting a V/Line community group be established for the Shepparton-Melbourne train line.

Mr Mulder recently announced a customer reference group would be established for the north-east region, focusing on the Albury line.

Shepparton RAILS chairman Michael Welk said the council’s request was an encouraging move.

‘‘We look forward to a positive answer from the minister — that he supports a reference group for Shepparton,’’ Mr Welk said.

‘‘We would wish to be represented on the group.’’

Mr Welk said Shepparton’s three daily rail services to Melbourne were not enough.

‘‘Every Monday we have people travelling from Melbourne who can’t get here in time to start work,’’ he said.

‘‘We also have students travelling to Melbourne who find it very difficult.

‘‘We have doctors coming from Melbourne to supply services. They have to come by car and get caught up in Melbourne traffic — it’s not good enough.’’

Cr Houlihan said a reference group would be a useful forum for residents.

‘‘A reference group would be able to provide very valuable information, data and justification as to why rail services between Shepparton and Melbourne need to improve,’’ she said.

‘‘Our residents rely heavily on public transport services for work and social engagements as well as to attend medical appointments; university commitments and sporting events and I believe they would have a lot of constructive feedback and ideas to communicate.’’

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