High-speed trains brought forward for Sandwich and Deal

High speed train
Image caption Journey times from Sandwich and Deal to Kent are cut from two hours 15 minutes to 80 minutes

The high-speed rail service connecting two Kent towns with London is to begin a month earlier than planned.

From 5 September, Southeastern trains will now stop at Sandwich and Deal before following the established route via Dover to St Pancras.

Kent County Council is supporting the £150,000 cost of the extra train services in an attempt to attract investment to the area.

Journey times are cut from two hours 15 minutes to 80 minutes.

The service was piloted last month during the 140th Open Golf Championship, which was held in Sandwich.

More than 37,000 passengers used the service to visit the four-day tournament at the Royal St George's course.

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