RAIL passengers are expected to benefit from a massive shake-up in railway timetable across the south west.

Great Western Railway has announced the biggest revisions to the schedules since the introduction of Inner-City trains.

The company has responded to changes in demand and reviewed its south west timetable. 

This means in May, the 0637 Paddington to Penzance will cease to operate and the 0545 Paddington-Bristol will be replaced by a new 0600 Paddington-Penzance service travelling via Swindon and Bristol, calling Plymouth at 0940 and Penzance at 1140. 

This will provide a direct service from Swindon, Bath and Bristol to Devon and Cornwall  

GWR will add an 0838 Paddington-Westbury service calling at all Kennet Valley stations between Reading and Westbury to allow for earlier travel.  

Kennet Valley calls on the 0938 Paddington to Paignton will be removed to allow for a reduced journey time to Torbay . 

The 1004 Paddington-Penzance service will run non-stop from Reading to Exeter to give an earlier arrival in Devon and Cornwall.

The changes follow an extensive review to give those travelling the right services at the times they wish to travel, the new timetable, which comes in from Sunday, will deliver almost a five per cent increase in train services every day across the GWR network.

GWR says the changes will help deliver on long-planned ambitions across the network and will see around 20per cent of all trains retimed to better suit passenger needs, providing greater value for money for taxpayers and leaner and greener travel options on public transport.

GWR managing director Mark Hopwood said: ‘I am really excited to say that this new timetable provides the biggest shake-up in service levels since the introduction of Intercity Express trains – providing more trains where they are needed most and reflecting changes in travel patterns.  

‘We will deliver more train services, serving even more stations, and providing greater value for money for taxpayers.’