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Author Topic: It's full speed ahead for 'half-baked' rail scheme (Morning Star 12/01/2012)  (Read 5772 times)
bignosemac
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« on: January 13, 2012, 01:47:48 pm »

From the Morning Star:

Quote
Rail union RMT leader Bob Crow attacked the government today for steaming ahead with tendering for the new Greater Western franchise before the McNulty rail review has passed through Parliament.

The tender documents make it clear that the bidding process will be conducted under the framework set out by Sir Roy McNulty's review and that means the closure of ticket offices at 29 stations and severe cuts to opening hours at a further 17.

Mr Crow said: "It is an insult to democracy that the Greater Western franchise is being tendered on the basis of a half-baked and totally bogus set of ideas advanced by McNulty before they have even been endorsed by the country's lawmakers.

"This a pre-emptive strike that will lead to a massacre of the ticket offices from London to Wales and the south-west with hundreds of station and train-based jobs on the line and the quality of passenger services dumped in order to ramp up private profits.

"RMT will unite with our sister unions and passengers to stop these plans in their tracks."

Not usual for me to comment on news items immediately after posting, but no surprise to see that self-confessed communist, Bob Crow, spouting his usual nonsense.

"half-baked", "bogus", "massacre", "dumped"..... Not one to mince his words is he?

  Roll Eyes
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ChrisB
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« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2012, 01:50:01 pm »

You'll find an RMT press release about this on their website....
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bignosemac
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« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2012, 01:59:14 pm »

http://www.rmt.org.uk/Templates/Internal.asp?NodeID=154229&int1stParentNodeID=89732

OK, so it maybe the case that there will be some changes in ticket office provision come the new franchise. But it is, at the moment just conjecture, seeing as the franchise specification has not yet be published. And we don't yet know for sure what, if any, of the McNulty recommendations will find their way into that new franchise specification.

That said, Mr Crow and the RMT, as stakeholders, are free to make their case during the franchise consultation process, but does Commie Bob need to do so with such verbose language? To my mind, it doesn't help the RMT's case when such language is used.

Oh, and nice of him to speak on behalf of 'sister unions' (shouldn't that be 'brothers' or 'comrades'?  Tongue). I wonder what the TSSA think of Bob's utterances....
« Last Edit: January 13, 2012, 02:11:29 pm by bignosemac » Logged

Btline
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« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2012, 02:42:30 pm »

It's strange that he condemned the fare rises, but also wants lots of staff sitting around doing nothing at ticket offices to get pay rises.

I hardly ever use the ticket office now. I feel guilty, as I know the staff at my local station are excellent, and find good deals and use tricks that many staff have never heard of (e.g. the VT Off Peak tickets with railcard valid anytime).

Why? - due to the way that fares are, I have to buy in advance for me to be able to afford tickets. Even if it is a short walk on Off Peak day return, I'll check online lest there is a sale on. Even if there is no sale, I'll buy on EC and get points. Whenever possible, I use smartcards.

TOCs themselves have condemned the ticket offices to die a death by making online prices cheaper (something Labour want to stop). I don't use TVMs wherever possible - they are hopeless. The ticket offices should close, but the staff should be kept to man barriers throughout the day, which should be built at as many stations as possible. This would keep stations "staffed" even without a ticket office.
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lordgoata
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« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2012, 03:30:48 pm »

I hardly ever use the ticket office now. I feel guilty, as I know the staff at my local station are excellent, and find good deals and use tricks that many staff have never heard of (e.g. the VT Off Peak tickets with railcard valid anytime).

Why? - due to the way that fares are, I have to buy in advance for me to be able to afford tickets. Even if it is a short walk on Off Peak day return, I'll check online lest there is a sale on. Even if there is no sale, I'll buy on EC and get points. Whenever possible, I use smartcards.

TOCs themselves have condemned the ticket offices to die a death by making online prices cheaper (something Labour want to stop). I don't use TVMs wherever possible - they are hopeless. The ticket offices should close, but the staff should be kept to man barriers throughout the day, which should be built at as many stations as possible. This would keep stations "staffed" even without a ticket office.

I, on the other hand, use the ticket office every month (or week), along with a whole load of other people. I have been stung too many times with tickets not arriving on time due to Royal Mail being utterly useless (why should I wait a week for a ticket to arrive, when I can get it immediately from the ticket office anyway?).

Season tickets cost the same online as they do from the ticket office, and the ticket machine seems to be out of action when ever I do need it out of hours (and can you even get season tickets from the machines ?!).

Goring, I believe, was one of the stations earmarked for closure, and I will be ROYALLY p*ssed if it does close Angry
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paul7755
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« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2012, 03:54:41 pm »

What the heck does he mean by the McNulty Review having to 'pass through parliament'?

Paul
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ChrisB
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« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2012, 04:25:54 pm »

The Givernment has to officially state what of his recommendations they are accepting - the response on new Franchising will cover it...
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ChrisB
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« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2012, 04:29:14 pm »

However, I could support BTLine's suggestion, only providing that every station got a TVM and that they sold every ticket available from a ticket office.

Railcards could be outsourced to newsagents, a la Oyster outlets
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inspector_blakey
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« Reply #8 on: January 13, 2012, 04:55:59 pm »

Anyone else get the feeling that Bob Crow seems to be sliding ever further down a slope towards self-parody...? Roll Eyes
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Btline
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« Reply #9 on: January 13, 2012, 05:54:00 pm »

However, I could support BTLine's suggestion, only providing that every station got a TVM and that they sold every ticket available from a ticket office.

Railcards could be outsourced to newsagents, a la Oyster outlets

Yes, and the staff on barriers would also be "customer service assistants" - i.e. would help bewildered commuters chose the right fare from the TVMs.

There should also be one website (National Rail?) that sells rail tickets using the ATOS system - with TOC websites just having a link. The  Trainline should be axed.
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ChrisB
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« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2012, 05:08:42 pm »

Can't do that - it's a commercial enterprise...
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eightf48544
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« Reply #11 on: February 16, 2012, 06:33:06 am »

Can't do that - it's a commercial enterprise...

And  that's the problem. When travel agents sold rail tickets, in the bad old non commercial days they got a discount from BR and sold at station prices.

But then again even I could understand the fare system in those days. It was 5/6 return East Croydon to London. A flip on the ticket machine, 10 bob note, ticket and plus 2 bob bit and half a crown change. You could do several a passengers minute.
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