VICTORY is in sight for campaigners fighting to get c2c to revert to its old timetable after the Government scrapped controversial stops at east London stations.

The National Express-owned rail operator launched its new timetable on Sunday, December 13 in a bid to cope with an increase in passenger numbers.

Part of the franchise agreement with the Department for Transport was a clause saying 95 per cent of trains had to stop at east London stations Barking, West Ham and Limehouse, an idea c2c originally proposed.

The Minister for Railways, Claire Perry, has now agreed to waive the clause.

It comes after months of complaints of over-crowded trains and slower journeys from fed-up commuters.

The news came to light in a letter from James Duddridge, Conservative MP for Rochford and Southend East, to a constituent.

He said: “This is the first positive step towards reversing the changes we are all so unhappy about.

“As I have said before, this matter remains firmly on my radar and I will continue to work towards changing these wholly unpopular and unwanted changes to our timetable.

“On a broader issue, I think we should be asking for all trains from Shoebury to be under an hour.”

c2c have yet to announce what the decision will mean to commuters, but it could lead to faster trains between south Essex and London Fenchurch Street, a particular benefit in the evening rush hour as east London passengers will not crowd trains bypassing those stops.

A spokeswoman for c2c said: "We've been having positive conversations with the Department for Transport and we look forward to making an announcement once these talks are concluded."

Mr Duddridge’s letter was sent to Richard Tanner, 59, who commuted daily from Southend East to London Fenchurch Street.

He said: “Ultimately it’s down to what c2c do with this now.

“I have used the line for many years and it has never been this bad.

“Having spoken to a few people the only ones I can see that the current timetable is good for is those wanting a quick journey between Barking and West Ham – hopefully this means that will change.”