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Journey by Journey => London to Kennet Valley => Topic started by: hoover50 on September 30, 2019, 01:26:05 pm



Title: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: hoover50 on September 30, 2019, 01:26:05 pm
As a result of the new timetable from 15/12/19 onwards, the current 0810 off-peak train from Pewsey to Paddington has been replaced by an 0817 peak-time train. This means that a return to London around that time increases from £53.60 to £120

The first off-peak train will be a 0930 departure rather than the 0810 at present, i.e. 1hr 20mins later.

I thought the whole idea of the new timetable was to improve things but this will make it much worse for people wanting to travel from Pewsey!  >:(


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: grahame on September 30, 2019, 01:36:34 pm
As a result of the new timetable from 15/12/19 onwards, the current 0810 off-peak train from Pewsey to Paddington has been replaced by an 0817 peak-time train. This means that a return to London around that time increases from £53.60 to £120

The first off-peak train will be a 0930 departure rather than the 0810 at present, i.e. 1hr 20mins later.

I thought the whole idea of the new timetable was to improve things but this will make it much worse for people wanting to travel from Pewsey!  >:(

See http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=22244.0 ... where we suspect that this may not be intentional.   I have also followed up on the Facebook Pewsey Community Page.

Issue of changed train times pushing services from off peak to peak effects other lines too. I will be writing up / raising a couple of Melksham issues via the user Group, and am hopeful that the boundary of the peak will be adjusted rather than massive fare rises on trains that become peak in name, but are off-peak in traffic / nature.


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Bedwyn, Hungerford, Kintbury
Post by: grahame on October 16, 2019, 12:47:13 am
View from Bedwyn / Kintbury / Hungerford on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=1702946386503788&set=gm.2736830779737625&type=3&theater&ifg=1)

Very high percentage price increases for some as trains move a few minutes and long-standing concessions are withdrawn.  It may be that the new system is fairer across the board, but as the post says "we have built our lives around these trains and train prices".




Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: bignosemac on October 16, 2019, 11:39:34 am
Largely irrelevant. If you're driving a commercial vehicle it's your responsibility to know its height.


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: Timmer on October 16, 2019, 12:04:03 pm
Largely irrelevant. If you're driving a commercial vehicle it's your responsibility to know its height.
Think this was for another thread. Do you want me to remove BNM?


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: Celestial on October 16, 2019, 03:26:40 pm
Largely irrelevant. If you're driving a commercial vehicle it's your responsibility to know its height.
Think this was for another thread. Do you want me to remove BNM?
Maybe the first two words were more fitting than intended.


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: bignosemac on October 16, 2019, 03:47:07 pm
Apologies. I did post in wrong thread. As there have been follow ups then it's okay to leave my embarrassment for posterity. :-[


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Bedwyn, Hungerford, Kintbury
Post by: TaplowGreen on October 16, 2019, 07:02:44 pm
View from Bedwyn / Kintbury / Hungerford on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=1702946386503788&set=gm.2736830779737625&type=3&theater&ifg=1)

Very high percentage price increases for some as trains move a few minutes and long-standing concessions are withdrawn.  It may be that the new system is fairer across the board, but as the post says "we have built our lives around these trains and train prices".




I think they're being a bit melodramatic. Surely it's the case that in any reorganisation on this scale there are always going to be winners and losers?

One could argue that they've benefitted from an extremely generous easement for many years, and these are always subject to potential withdrawal?

Are there slower (but cheaper) trains still available, albeit perhaps involving a change at Reading?

(I do agree with BNM about the commercial vehicles though!)  :)


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Bedwyn, Hungerford, Kintbury
Post by: grahame on October 17, 2019, 09:55:17 am
I think they're being a bit melodramatic. Surely it's the case that in any reorganisation on this scale there are always going to be winners and losers?

Taking Pewsey, as I know the case better, as an example

The price increases on the lowest cost walk up tickets for certain journeys at certain times of day have come as a massive shock to people who have used these services with these tickets for many years. For many people, cost-of-travel is a significant part of their budget and changing from a £53.60 fare to a £120.00 fare (say) 40 times a year would / will cost an extra £2,656.00 per annum - up from £2144.00 to £4,800.   Assuming a basic rate (20%) taxpayer, it's an extra £3127.20 gross needed and I'm not going to try to consider National Insurance factors.

However ...

a) The fare until mid December has been a concession and there's an argument that it should not have been so low in the first place; a difficult one as it has been established as a custom for so long.   And no notice (to my knowledge) was given that the custom was to be withdrawn.   Last year, Pewsey lost its rail services for 50 days (bus replacement instead) amongst a great deal of publicity talking about new, better, faster trains.  At no point to I recall seeing any warning that (for some) the new, better, faster trains would also cost them a lot more to use - and people are going to feel aggrieved at been selectively informed last year and having this sprung on them now.

b) If a product you have used suddenly and sharply increases in price, or otherwise becomes unavailable, surely you take a look for an alternative product.  Whilst the headlines we're seeing are looking at the new price of travelingg on what is essentially the same train with the same ticket type, for many users I suspect there are other options so they won't have to spend all that extra:
* A new train an hour later available at the lower price which could even be better for some:
* re-arrange their work to be able to make less journeys
* shift their office time (if they can) a couple of hours later
* Drive to a lower cost station, bearing in mind that Pewsey is a railhead
* Look at booking further ahead with advance tickets
* Buy two singles - up in the peak, back off peak perhaps
Split ticketing, season tickets (which are not going up) etc are further options to look at.

Looking ahead to the new year, the £120 ticket may be rising to £124 giving rise to a further shout of pain.  And looking further ahead to someone sorting out the current mess that is ticketing ... goodness only knows what the effect will be.  But then with Pewsey to London for a day in the peak - £120 and  Bedwyn to London in the peak being 'just' £63.10, future levelling out might reduce the Pewsey fares at the expense of the Bedwyn ones.   We live in interesting times!



Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Bedwyn, Hungerford, Kintbury
Post by: hoover50 on October 18, 2019, 09:00:30 am
But then with Pewsey to London for a day in the peak - £120 and  Bedwyn to London in the peak being 'just' £63.10, future levelling out might reduce the Pewsey fares at the expense of the Bedwyn ones.   We live in interesting times!

This really needs to be addressed. It is absolutely ridiculous that the fare is almost double from Pewsey which is less than 9 miles down the line from Bedwyn.

I think the main cause of this anomaly is that you are able buy an anytime day return from Bedwyn but not from Pewsey, where you have to buy an anytime period return.



Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Bedwyn, Hungerford, Kintbury
Post by: Timmer on October 18, 2019, 09:25:06 am
This really needs to be addressed. It is absolutely ridiculous that the fare is almost double from Pewsey which is less than 9 miles down the line from Bedwyn.

I think the main cause of this anomaly is that you are able buy an anytime day return from Bedwyn but not from Pewsey, where you have to buy an anytime period return.
Time was that you could justify the huge difference in fare due to Pewsey having IC quality rolling stock compared to DMUs from Bedwyn, but now the rolling stock, in the form of IETs, is of exactly the same standard from both stations.


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Bedwyn, Hungerford, Kintbury
Post by: Richard Fairhurst on October 18, 2019, 11:21:56 am
Are there slower (but cheaper) trains still available, albeit perhaps involving a change at Reading?

Slightly going off-topic, but this to my mind was the main disadvantage of unifying all Paddington services under one operator. (There were, of course, many advantages!)

WCML passengers benefit from the competition between LNWR and Virgin (and, of course, Chiltern) - different fares and different levels of provision. The same is true to a lesser extent on the ECML as far as Peterborough, and at various places across the network where you'll often have choice of a London InterCity operator, CrossCountry, and one or even two regional operators.

We don't have that in GWR land. If GWR changes its fares, or its restrictions, or its train design, passengers are stuck with it. Generally there's no "slower but cheaper" option as there might be elsewhere on the network.

Thames Trains were a bl--dy awful operator and I don't miss them in the least, but I do sometimes cast envious glances across to the WCML.


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Bedwyn, Hungerford, Kintbury
Post by: ray951 on October 18, 2019, 12:14:16 pm
Are there slower (but cheaper) trains still available, albeit perhaps involving a change at Reading?

Slightly going off-topic, but this to my mind was the main disadvantage of unifying all Paddington services under one operator. (There were, of course, many advantages!)

WCML passengers benefit from the competition between LNWR and Virgin (and, of course, Chiltern) - different fares and different levels of provision. The same is true to a lesser extent on the ECML as far as Peterborough, and at various places across the network where you'll often have choice of a London InterCity operator, CrossCountry, and one or even two regional operators.

We don't have that in GWR land. If GWR changes its fares, or its restrictions, or its train design, passengers are stuck with it. Generally there's no "slower but cheaper" option as there might be elsewhere on the network.

Thames Trains were a bl--dy awful operator and I don't miss them in the least, but I do sometimes cast envious glances across to the WCML.

Won't there soon be competition between TFL and GWR between Reading and Paddington? Maybe spliting tickets at Reading will become popular?


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: Timmer on November 22, 2019, 10:24:29 am
BBC South Today's Paul Clifton will be doing a report on the Pewsey off peak to peak fare change from December's TT change for South Today.


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: hoover50 on November 22, 2019, 05:25:41 pm
BBC South Today's Paul Clifton will be doing a report on the Pewsey off peak to peak fare change from December's TT change for South Today.

I just watched the report from the lunchtime news, via BBC iplayer. One of the passengers featured on the report seemed completely unaware of the fare hike. His words were "...You've shocked me..."

I suspect there are still quite a few people who are completely unaware of the controversy and are going to rock up to Pewsey station from Dec 16th and will be in for a nasty shock when they ask for a ticket for the 0817 to London and be told the cost is now £120 rather than £53.60


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: eXPassenger on November 22, 2019, 06:27:56 pm
I am very aware that there is this much angst over a single station.  Imagine the screams if fares are rationalised across the country, even if the total fare take remains the same.


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: Timmer on November 22, 2019, 07:24:03 pm
For me it’s not so much GWR ending the availability of the off peak fare on a service from Pewsey between 8-8.30, but the difference in the price of the peak fare when travelling from Bedwyn particularly now the standard of rolling stock is exactly the same.


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: grahame on November 30, 2019, 06:50:10 pm
Revisiting this topic now that 2020 fares have been announced.

Technical stuff first.  Then fare suggestions below

Return fares from PEWSEY to London Paddington rise on 2nd January 2020
Anytime return from £120.00 to £123.40
Off peak return from £53.60 to £55.10
Super off peak return from £40.40 to £41.50

Anytime is valid on any train
Off peak is valid to London on the 09:30 and later trains and any Saturday or Sunday trains
Super off peak is valid to London on the 11:01 and later trains and any Saturday or Sunday trains

Return trains from London - these super off peak tickets are valid for journeys back at 10:35, 12:36, 14:36, 20:04 and 21:04 and any Saturday or Sunday train.  Off peak (rather than super off peak) are valid additionally on the trains from Paddington at 09:37 or 18:37.   If you want to travel back to Pewsey on the 07:04, 16:38, 17:04, 17:37 or 18:07 on a Monday to Friday, only the anytime ticket (of those listed above) is valid.



Suggestions

1. If you book well ahead, advance fares are often available.  They require you to choose your trains, but can be very good value.  Beware that they are not refundable.  GWR have increased the quota of these tickets with the changing timetable as something to help out Pewsey residents, but it is up to the train operator how many and when to offer them - they are not a "regulated" fare and numbers are limited, so they may dry up.

2. The tickets above are all period returns - come back within a month.   But if you are traveling up and back the same day, you can use DAY returns.  These are not available over as long a distance as from Pewsey to London, but they ARE available Pewsey to Newbury and then Newbury to London.  Day returns can be substantially cheaper than singles or period returns.   It will cost £10.10 anytime day return Pewsey to Newbury and then £61.60 day return Newbury to Paddington (£71.70 total) rather that £123.40 if you are doing a day trip.  All tickets can be bought on line or from the ticket office at Pewsey (when staffed).  The only stipulation is that you must travel on a train that calls at Newbury - and that is any train from Pewsey EXCEPT the 09:30 and any train back from Paddington except the 17:04 and 20:04.

3. If you are travelling one way in the peak and the other way off peak, two single tickets (one peak, one off peak) will be cheaper than a peak return.

4. If you are travelling to London super-off peak but aren't sure whether you'll be coming back off peak or super off peak (e.g. up on the 11:01, probably back on the 20:04 but you may catch the 18:37), you can buy a super-offpeak return and then ask for it to be excessed (pay the difference) if it turn out you're coming home on the 18:37.

5. If you are travelling multiple times during a week, in the peaks and want maximum flexibility, take a look at the price of a 7 day season ticket.  That's £186.60 in 2019 and £191.20 in 2020

6. Railcards offer a 34% saving on many tickets - there's a difference in exactly which railcards save on which tickets, and the rules differ at Pewsey (outside the old "South East") area and Newbury (inside it)

As from 16th December, the train from Pewsey to London at around quarter past eight moves from "off peak" to anytime, meaning that the price of a return ticket to London on that train (£53.60 if coming back outside the peak) more than doubles. There are a multitude of option which will allow most passengers to make their journeys at rather less that the new headline price of £120.00 (or £123.40 in 2020). Please look at my suggestions, and if you need further explanation or advise please ask.   I have done my best to be accurate, but please note that I am not an industry professional or representative, and if in doubt you should ask for confirmation.





Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: Timmer on November 30, 2019, 09:12:40 pm
Well done for working all that out and typing it all up Graham.

A lot of us who take an interest in all things rail can easily take for granted the knowledge and understanding we have of how things like fares work. For those who don’t it can be very complicated either getting caught out with the wrong fare or paying way more than they should.


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: hoover50 on December 02, 2019, 09:20:13 am
Well done for working all that out and typing it all up Graham.

A lot of us who take an interest in all things rail can easily take for granted the knowledge and understanding we have of how things like fares work. For those who don’t it can be very complicated either getting caught out with the wrong fare or paying way more than they should.

Agreed.

It is also important to quash silly rumours that start circulating, for example some people were under the impression that ALL fares from Pewsey were going to be more than doubled, even though in reality it is only one train that will be affected.


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: FenMan on December 11, 2019, 01:40:29 pm

5. If you are travelling multiple times during a week, in the peaks and want maximum flexibility, take a look at the price of a 7 day season ticket.  That's £186.60 in 2019 and £191.20 in 2020


Further to 5. above. It is cheaper to purchase split season tickets (trains do not have to stop at the splitting point for this type of split):-

7 day ticket prices applicable from the fares change:-
£  26.80 Pewsey - Bedwyn
£138.30 Bedwyn - London Terminals
£165.10 Total




Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: grahame on December 11, 2019, 03:16:58 pm
Further to 5. above. It is cheaper to purchase split season tickets (trains do not have to stop at the splitting point for this type of split):-

Quote
14.2. If you are using a Season Ticket, daily Zonal Ticket, or another area based Ticket such as a concessionary pass, ranger or rover in conjunction with another Ticket and the last station at which one Ticket is valid and the first station that the other Ticket is valid are the same, then the train does not need to call at that station for your combination to be valid.

Well spotted ... that was a change when we went from "Conditions of Carriage" to "Condition of Travel".  Prior to that, splitting was allowed at a none-calling station if one ticket was a season or similar and the other(s) were not. I recall a journey with multiple splits from North Camp to Melksham, and because I had a season ticket from Cholsey to Didcot, I was able to split at Farnborough North even though the train did not call there.    Scene 2 - difference of opinion with the train manager who told me that rule didn't apply on the North Downs line; he move on when I want across to my backpack where (I told him, correctly) I happened to have a printer copy of the NRCoC.  Note - this option is no longer allowed, but as FenMan pointed out two seasons now can be joined without a stop.


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: onthecushions on December 11, 2019, 09:29:34 pm

An off peak fare for an arrival at a London Terminal at 0923 is exceedingly generous.

OTC


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: hoover50 on December 12, 2019, 01:40:46 pm
An off peak fare for an arrival at a London Terminal at 0923 is exceedingly generous.

Not really.

According to GWR, Pewsey was granted an exception in 2004 to allow off peak fares on the peak time train to London Paddington after 8am because there was a very limited off-peak service. In the current timetable (pre 15th December) the next train after the 0810 to London Paddington is the 1018 which doesn't arrive into London Paddington until 1121



Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: grahame on December 12, 2019, 03:23:39 pm
An off peak fare for an arrival at a London Terminal at 0923 is exceedingly generous.

Not really.

According to GWR, Pewsey was granted an exception in 2004 to allow off peak fares on the peak time train to London Paddington after 8am because there was a very limited off-peak service. In the current timetable (pre 15th December) the next train after the 0810 to London Paddington is the 1018 which doesn't arrive into London Paddington until 1121


The concession was / is there, indeed, because of the historic timetable which has its final day tomorrow.

We have known that a timetable improvement has been coming to Pewsey for a number of years - I recall standing on the platform at telling passengers they their 08:10 train would be replaced by a bus for 50 days, thanking them in advance for their forbearance, and telling them of trains that would be a little faster and gaps filled.  I do feel that would have been a good time to inform people of significant fare changes too - after all "when does it go and what does it cost" are the typical first two questions about public transport from people.  But the plans to change the fare concessions, which had been in place for 14 years and people had built their lives around, were not revealed.  I feel the information was withheld until far too late.

A peak day return fare from BEDWYN to London costs 43p per mile, but from Pewsey to London only a period return is available at 60p per mile.    If passengers making a day return journey from Pewsey to London had an option at the same pence per mile as Bedwyn, their £53.50 would have risen to a £76.20 return fare day return, and not to the headlined £120.00.  With one of the government's objectives being to widen the commuter belt, Great Western could have taken the opportunity to introduce an anytime day return from Pewsey

Fare rises typically happen on the first working day in January.   Great Western's alacrity in removing this concession without waiting for the cycle just a couple of weeks later has probably done far more damage to their good name than the income they would have lost over what, after all, is the Christmas and New Year period.


Title: Re: New Timetable Fares Issue - Pewsey
Post by: onthecushions on December 13, 2019, 11:09:09 am

Surely the better comparison is with Swindon, about the same distance and with  a slightly dearer fare than Pewsey. Both are outside the "London Area" or ex-Network South East fare structure. Swindon does have a lot more services of course but its first off peak departure will be 0910 as against 0930 from Pewsey. The B&H service is fast, arriving at 1027 compared to 1007 from Swindon.

The current TT arrival of 1121 (until 15/12) is not really relevant?

It might be better trying to have the boundary moved to include Pewsey, serving it by extending the Bedwyns. There's a long natural gap between stations afterwards.

EOE

OTC



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