Chiltern Railways axes all on-board catering
Fans of railway buffet car fare were dealt a blow today after yet another train company announced it was ending on-board catering services.
Chiltern Railways, which runs trains from Marylebone to Banbury and Birmingham, said it was doing away with its buffet services from this Saturday because too many passengers were bringing their own food on board.
In a statement, the company said: “Increasing numbers of customers are choosing to purchase food and drink at the shops and cafes at our stations.
This has led to fewer people purchasing on board and the delivery of the service is no longer sustainable.”
Chiltern, the latest train operator to axe on-train catering, urged passengers to “purchase before travelling”.
From Saturday, passengers will have to do without the breakfast choices of sliced Scottish smoked salmon served with free-range scrambled egg on toast (£4.95), a bacon and sausage bap (£3.75) or porridge with a choice of flavours, including apple and cinnamon, date and apricot and dark chocolate and ginger (£2.60).
Mike Hewitson, head of policy at rail passenger watchdog Transport Focus, said: “Some passengers on Chiltern will be disappointed about the withdrawal of catering on their trains, particularly those who travel on long journeys.”
In 2015, Southern Railways ended on-board catering, also blaming the popularity of station coffee shops and food outlets.
However, Great Western Railway, which runs long-distance services from Paddington, has maintained and improved its Pullman services.
Its dinner menu includes slow-braised Somerset pork belly and West Country-reared fillet steak, accompanied by selected wines.