CHILTERN Railways is celebrating six months since it started running services between Oxford and London Marylebone.

When the new connection, in partnership with Network Rail, was launched in December, it was the first new link between a major British city and London in more than 100 years.

Chiltern Railways said the results so far show that the line is encouraging more residents to travel by rail - with 95,000 additional journeys being made between Oxford and London in the first six months.

Managing director Dave Penney said: “It is six months since we launched services between Oxford city centre and London Marylebone; the new line is performing ahead of expectations and we are delighted with how it has been received.

“The route provides new options for those commuting into Oxford and real choice and flexibility for those travelling between Oxford and London.”

Since the Oxford to Marylebone route opened in December 2016 – providing an alternative to GWR’s services to Paddington – the rail market between Oxford station and London has grown by 18 per cent.

Just over 18 months after the launch of Oxford Parkway station in Water Eaton, three million journeys have been made on the new line.