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1  All across the Great Western territory / Looking forward - 2018 to 2045 / Re: Rise in car dependency - unintended consequence, or expected effect of policy? on: Yesterday at 03:01:39 pm
A sidebar on a Sun article about "Furious passengers on Govia and Northern Rail have been blocked from forming a new political party to oust the Transport Secretary".

Quote
ANGER at public transport is fuelling a rise in car dependency, an annual RAC poll says.

A third of drivers, a record high, say they are more reliant on their cars than a year earlier.

A little over a quarter said the same in 2017. One in four blamed a deterioration in bus and train services. Six in ten said they would drive less if the networks improved.

RAC chief engineer David Bizley said many people do not see public transport as a “viable alternative” to the car. He called for more investment to make it “reliable, frequent, comfortable and affordable”.

Bus and rail passenger trips both dropped last year, Department for Transport figures show.

Are we again in an age where a deterioration in bus and train services to the extent that it drives significant numbers of people away is an accepted / acceptable policy, or is it an unintended consequence of what's being going on with very different intent (or no intent at all)?

I'd be much more interested to hear what an unbiased, properly-sampled study said rather than hearing the views of members of a motoring organisation. Having said that, clearly fewer people will be using buses in places where there are fewer of them. But when I hear an RAC spokesperson calling for better public transport, I can't help presuming they want that to make more room for their Mr Toads to poop-poop around in.

https://youtu.be/EfqPfq6t9NM




2  Journey by Journey / Bristol Commuters / Re: MetroBus on: September 19, 2018, 08:57:44 pm
Arguably this FW song is also relevant to this topic: https://youtu.be/G0-OO7eWGX0

I used to really like Fred Wedlock - even saw him live once - but I'm not sure he's quite stood the test of time...
3  Journey by Journey / Bristol Commuters / Re: MetroBus on: September 19, 2018, 02:31:40 pm
In BOC (pre-National Bus Company) days there was a clear distinction between city and country services. Bristol city services were latterly numbered 1-99 and operated by Bristol Joint Services vehicles, half-owned by the corporation, whilst Bristol Country services were in the 300-399 range and were operated by wholly-owned BOC vehicles. To make the distinction BJS fleet numbers were prefixed 'C' e.g. C5003. City services got dual-door vehicles, whilst country services got the single-door variant; there were occasions when vehicles were rebuilt to single-door format on transfer to country services. Clearly as you say this reflected the passenger volume, but staffing didn't come into it - dual door vehicles were only crew-operated on 'jazzer' services.
4  All across the Great Western territory / Who's who on Western railways / Re: Sub-National Transport Bodies in the South West on: September 19, 2018, 12:00:15 pm
Somerset seems to want a foot in both camps - joining South West Peninsula, but with associate membership of Western Gateway:

Quote

1. Agree to join an informal partnership with Cornwall Council, Plymouth City Council, Torbay Council, Devon County Council and Dorset County Council; which will be known as a shadow sub-national transport body for the South West Peninsula, subject to Government agreeing with that proposal, and subject to formal agreement of a final terms of reference once the partnership has formally convened.
....
3. Agree to become an associate member of the shadow ‘Western Gateway’ sub-national transport body which will also operate initially as an informal partnership, subject to agreeing appropriate terms of reference in due course.

Source Somerset County Council


Any confirmation of what North Somerset plan to do? Caribbean and Central America?
5  Journey by Journey / Bristol Commuters / Re: MetroBus on: September 19, 2018, 10:46:48 am
Dual doors are a thing, aren't they? When one person operation was introduced by the Bristol Omnibus Company back in the seventies, all OMO* buses working city services (in Bristol, Bath, Gloucester and, if I remember correctly, Cheltenham) had dual doors. You could see the sense in this as it allowed the driver to fire up their trusty Setright machine and start taking fares that bit quicker, but the layout died with the last of the RELLs and VRTs by which time presumably people had forgotten how much better life was when buses had conductors. I find it odd that this system should make a comeback on services with off-vehicle ticketing.

* One-man operated. This was, as I say, the seventies.
6  Journey by Journey / Bristol Commuters / Re: MetroBus on: September 18, 2018, 05:39:33 pm
Purley. FAY-mous place...
7  Journey by Journey / Bristol Commuters / Re: MetroBus on: September 18, 2018, 12:59:06 pm
...they are proposing "an integrated transport hub...

This is an integrated transport hub, 2018-style:



8  Sideshoots - associated subjects / News, Help and Assistance / Re: Acronyms & Abbreviations page - suggestions for improvements on: September 16, 2018, 08:00:59 pm
It is a truth universally acknowledged that as soon as old people (i.e. the over-20s) start to understand a generation's teen slang, it has already moved on. Wagwan yo'sel, coot!

Edit: Actually some definitions of 'coot' are slightly more insulting than I meant to be. I don't know the street slang word for 'effective transport campaigner who, at a guess, is slightly north of 20', on account of my being and old coot.
9  Journey by Journey / Bristol Commuters / Re: Metrowest Status on: September 14, 2018, 11:44:06 pm
Quote
- The planning application was submitted in July, which is currently being assessed.

So it was: 18/03830/F
10  Sideshoots - associated subjects / Preserved railway lines, Railtours and other rail based attractions / Re: Closure threat - Bristol Railway on: September 13, 2018, 06:42:47 pm
From The BBC
"The cost of running Ashton Court is nearly £500,000 a year."

But WHAT is the cost to the council of maintaining the small area of this large estate which the railway occupies, "Chicken Feed" I suspect.

Quite. Possibly the council is just playing political games, or perhaps they really can't see that if you raise the cost of something to the point where your customer can't afford it, you end up with a revenue of 100% of nothing. There was some similar kerfuffle a while back when they wanted to start charging the organisers of the Bristol's iconic Balloon Fiesta for the use of Ashton Court; Don Cameron said he was prepared to pay £1 (no typo; one pound) but if the council wanted more he'd have to consider moving it elsewhere...
11  Sideshoots - associated subjects / The West - but NOT the West's trains / Re: Voter ratio on: September 13, 2018, 01:18:25 pm

quite rightly, in my opinion...


Elsewhere on this forum plans to unite Greater Thornbury with (presumably) mwy o Magwyr to form a Severnside Cities axis have been discussed. I can't help wondering what makes the Cornish Brummies think they are in some way ethnically or culturally different from the Essex Devonians. Convincing people that they are in some way superior to the people in the next village or town, or over the river, is the oldest trick in the book for those who seek to divide us and rule us. Resist it! Put the cream beside the jam, and rid yourself of tyrants!
12  Sideshoots - associated subjects / Campaigns for new and improved services / Re: East - West Rail update (Oxford to Bedford) - ongoing discussion on: September 13, 2018, 11:09:34 am
To my simple way of looking at things, if the planned Oxford-Cambridge road is to be routed alongside the existing East-West rail trackbed between Oxford and Bedford then there is a logic in routing the central section of the rail link alongside the A428 - an established corridor. EWR state that the preferred route is through Sandy, but it's hard to see the new line following the old route given how built-up it is - the trackbed is thoroughly built-over in both Sandy and Potton, not to mention the Mullard Observatory.

As an aside, we can be thankful that this scheme didn't happen 30 years ago - you can be fairly sure they would have grabbed a fair chunk of the trackbed between Oxford and Bedford for the new road...
13  Sideshoots - associated subjects / Campaigns for new and improved services / Re: East - West Rail update (Oxford to Bedford) - ongoing discussion on: September 12, 2018, 11:07:51 am
Forgive me if I've missed something - I haven't made time to read all the documents - but the rather broad-brush indication shown here seems to peter out west of Bedford, presumably connecting with the A421... does this suggest that the 'Central Section' of the rail link might follow the A428, i.e. a route some 10km to the north of the old alignment through Sandy?
14  Sideshoots - associated subjects / Campaigns for new and improved services / Re: East - West Rail update (Oxford to Bedford) - ongoing discussion on: September 11, 2018, 11:45:48 am
And worth reminding those who are not following closely that the TWAO only covers the Western Section - the way things are heading, the Central Section could turn out to be a guided busway alongside the new road. Cue JoJo:

Quote
In reality, I don't think many commuters will really notice the difference when they change at Bedford and board the high-quality guided bus only 15 minutes walk from the station at Tavistock Street. From the inside, a bus and a train really are very much the same thing...
15  All across the Great Western territory / The Wider Picture in the United Kingdom / Re: Network Rail sells all its railway arches for £1.5bn on: September 11, 2018, 11:32:25 am
Can someone with a better grasp than I of financial matters explain to me how this makes sense? To my mind these were a valuable wholly-owned asset which, presumably, NR could have borrowed against at favourable rates. Why sell (well, lease) them?
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