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British Railways

British Railways

Postby JollyJill » 29 Dec 2013 12:15

Is it just here in the South East or are our railways inefficient all over the UK?

Plunky is a public transport anorak and is always moans if trains are cancelled or late. He says it's bad management and should be addressed.

I'm more philosophical about it and think that not everything can be perfect all of the time.

However even I had cause to be cross over the past couple of weeks during bad weather. I travel to London on the train frequently and during the past month, rarely has a train been on time.

On Friday, there were no trains in our region until midday.The excuse was the bad weather. Now I realise that rain had caused landslides in certain areas but we could see no reason for our 3 lines that run from Dartford to London to be closed for half a day.
As a result and not knowing if the trains would actually run when they said they would, we took my daughter back to London in the car. The weather really wasn't bad; just a few squally showers.

Yesterday, the same daughter needed to get to the Isle of Wight. It took her all day to get there because of cancelled trains to Portsmouth and the slow running trains from Southampton to Portsmouth where she caught the ferry. By the time she reached Portsmouth, she was in tears as she had missed a ferry by 1 minute because of the slow train. She had to wait another hour for the next one.

What are your trains like? Can you rely on them?
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Re: British Railways

Postby Meg50 » 29 Dec 2013 13:20

my daughter made this comment on FB the other day : I am seriously wondering if Southern are getting as sick of sending me compensation vouchers as I am of applying for them?!
It was accompanied by a picture of a vast heap of rail travel vouchers which presumably she will trade in when she buys a new season ticket

Rarely is her commute to work trouble free. She has now evolved a routine of calling up the live departures board at East Croydon before she gets out of bed in the morning!
She didn't get to work at all on Monday because EVERYTHING was cancelled!
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Re: British Railways

Postby JollyJill » 29 Dec 2013 13:25

Meg50 wrote:my daughter made this comment on FB the other day : I am seriously wondering if Southern are getting as sick of sending me compensation vouchers as I am of applying for them?!
It was accompanied by a picture of a vast heap of rail travel vouchers which presumably she will trade in when she buys a new season ticket

Rarely is her commute to work trouble free. She has now evolved a routine of calling up the live departures board at East Croydon before she gets out of bed in the morning!
She didn't get to work at all on Monday because EVERYTHING was cancelled!


It's not just us then Meg.

Actually, a friend of my daughter lives in Croydon and stayed at her flat on the day before Christmas Eve, only to find that he couldn't get to Croydon direct the following day and had to go a round about route.

I'm sure our train service has never been this bad.
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Re: British Railways

Postby Meg50 » 29 Dec 2013 13:52

correction - it was Tuesday - Christmas Eve! So the same time as your daughter's friend.
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British Railways

Postby Barry » 29 Dec 2013 13:56

Our daughter decided to head off back to Edinburgh on Friday, was going on the 12.22pm train but due to the weather decided to get the earlier 10.30am instead, thankfully an 'open' ticket.

She got home about an hour or so late, the train she should've been on, the 12.22 was almost 2 hours late, but that ended up being the last train, the rest were cancelled :evil:

When everything is running smoothly the trains are excellent :idea:

the problem is, they seldom seem to run smoothly :roll:
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British Railways

Postby judgegeoff » 29 Dec 2013 14:05

And the Government would like us all to give up our cars and rely on Public Transport!! :roll: :roll: :roll: However, with the state of our pot-holed roads, we might have to!

I was very impressed with Switzerland's rail system when I visited that Country in 2006 and we used their railway system extensively. If a train departed just 2 minutes late the Station Master would hang his head in shame.
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British Railways

Postby Barry » 29 Dec 2013 14:08

Have also used Swiss trains and in Belgium as well, I think the set the clocks by the trains :lol:
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Re: British Railways

Postby tomvet » 29 Dec 2013 14:36

I have to say our trains here are excellent - extremely comfortable and rarely run later than 10 mins late. In fact the last train I was on was on our way to our Belfast cruise when the Limerick - Dublin leg was 1 hour late but we had left 2 hours to make the connection in Dublin. Before that I cannot remember a late train. Frequency to Dublin is excellent. My biggest gripe is the network is rather small and trains are slow if you need to go anywhere but Dublin. Cork involves a train change. Tralee needs 2 changes and the last train takes ages. Galway is a slow train that the express bus is quicker. Waterford is very slow and Sligo involves going to Dublin to change that makes it unpractical and the bus is quicker.

Another gripe is that they are not cheap! Free if your an OAP though! :shock:

I think UK trains are very good and efficient and only ever once did I get into a tizzy travelling on them! On that occasion we were enroute to Prague via Stansted and had a 7 hour lay over and we decided to spend the day in Cambridge. In Cambridge we got on the wrong train and had to get off in Ely and get another train back - that was not a problem as we have built in contingency time but the train back from Ely had no wipers and it started to rain and the service was cancelled. We eventually had to get a train to Bishop Stortford and a taxi from there getting to STN 32 mins before the flight and pleaded at check in to issue us with our boarding passes - we left the checkin desks in a mad dash a sprinted non-stop to our seats on the plane!
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Re: British Railways

Postby Peka » 29 Dec 2013 16:07

I liked the train in Ireland - free wifi :mrgreen: clean, efficient, reasonable cost and the loos in the station were useable (and free) too!
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Re: British Railways

Postby Camela » 29 Dec 2013 18:27

I heard on the radio yesterday that trains from Banbury and Oxford to Winchester were being operated by buses. I'd lose the will and not travel those sort of distances on a bus. We like Italian trains, used them many times, fares reasonable and they run to time. Eldest son is going to Bari for a wedding in the summer so I suggested the train from Rome or Naples. No way,apparently he'd rather brave Ryanair or Alitalia via Rome or Milan.
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