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Author Topic: A review of 2014 at the First Great Western Coffee Shop Passenger Forum  (Read 3549 times)
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« on: January 01, 2015, 11:23:37 »

Many thanks to everyone who contributed to this forum in 2014, and a "thank you" too to everyone who's read what we have here, and to those who've told others about us. As a forum that's run on spare space on a server, without any income (free to join, no paid adverts), it's our members and guests who are also our ambassadors, spreading the word about who we are / what we do / the service we provide.   And clearly, based on traffic levels, there's a demand for that service.

In 2014, there were 1,998,663 page views in 370,598 sessions by 135,937 users - that's according to Google Analytics which does a pretty good job of counting "real person" accesses rather than search engines visiting the page and other traffic such as automata probing for security holes. Our own forum logs have counted 22,868 new posts (up from 22,285 in 2013 and from 18,632 in 2012) and 1,705 new subjects started.   That indicates there's a lot to talk about, and a lot of people wanting to talk as there are an average of 12 replies to each new subject. Here's a traffic graph (Google Analytics, sessions by day):

and I note with interest that sharp traffic rise in February, when the main line to the South West was breached at Dawlish and the Bristol to Taunton line was out of service for a considerable period, also due to the after effects of the weather.   As a site that has both campaigning and service information elements, I would expect to see such a rise in traffic when services aren't running correctly, and indeed in the world of a perfect and stable rail system I would expect to see a much quieter forum.

Top accesses for 2014 were from London, Bristol, Oxford, Bath, Cardiff, Plymouth, Maidenhead, Trowbridge, Reading and Exeter, with those 10 locations accounting for around 50% of "real person" traffic. For the record, my home town on Melksham, only about 25% smaller that Trowbridge in population, came in 32nd with 22% of the number of accesses from Trowbridge - yet another indirect hint / indication that thsi town, with its new service just a year old, still has a very long growth curve ahead of it.   94.61% of accesses were from within the UK (United Kingdom) (and to give you something to compare against, just under 15% of accesses to our training site which includes significant worldwide resources is from within the UK).

The biggest THANK YOU, though, goes to the seven active global moderators and two active administrators who help so much - making a huge contribution with their own free time, and doing a job which is usually greatly rewarding and fun, but sometimes can involve stepping in and taking difficult decsions that won't please everyone.   Lady and gentlemen, I salute and thank you!

The hottest topics from 2014 (number is post count, all thread with over 50 posts in last 365 days shown) ...

899 - link to to Re: Weather disruption across the FGW (First Great Western) network, February and March 2014
638 - link to to Re: FGW 1st Class - ongoing discussion of the benefits and their apparent reduction
589 - link to to Re: Thames Valley signalling problems causing delays - ongoing, since October 2014
452 - link to to Re: Reading Station improvements
390 - link to to Re: First Great Western on-board catering, HST (High Speed Train) buffets, Travelling Chefs and Pullmans
334 - link to to Re: Dawlish Avoiding Line - ongoing discussion, merged topic
270 - link to to Re: Thames Valley signalling problems - big delays - July 2014
175 - link to to Re: Great Western Main Line electrification gets go-ahead
166 - link to to Re: Intercity Express Programme (IEP (Intercity Express Program / Project.)) - ongoing discussion
163 - link to to Re: Electrification - what are the real benefits?
156 - link to to Re: Crossrail - ongoing discussion, merged topic
154 - link to to Re: Extending Crossrail to Reading - ongoing discussion, merged topic
144 - link to to Re: Loadings, cancellations and other issues
136 - link to to Re: Boxing Day Trains
128 - link to to Re: Swindon to Kemble re-doubling - ongoing discussion and updates
119 - link to to Re: Daytime Traffic on the TransWilts
103 - link to to Re: DMU (Diesel Multiple Unit) cascade
100 - link to to Re: Annoying / amusing use of completely irrelevant stock photos to illustrate news articles
100 - link to to Re: Okehampton-Tavistock. Discussion on reopening and potential use as a diversionary route
96 - link to to Re: Warning - Pedant alert
86 - link to to Re: Squirrels - red or grey, on the railways or otherwise: merged topic
86 - link to to Re: POLL: Scottish Independence?
80 - link to to Re: Hedge fund manager 'in ^42,550 train fare dodge'
79 - link to to Re: Whiteball Tunnel blockade - January / February 2014
77 - link to to Re: Bristol Temple Meads Station redevelopment
75 - link to to Re: Picture Quiz - March 2014
75 - link to to Re: Portishead Line reopening for passengers - ongoing discussion
74 - link to to Re: 15.51 Paddington to Worcester Shrub Hill
74 - link to to Re: Worcester Parkway project
70 - link to to Re: Short formations/failed trains
70 - link to to Re: Failed freight train,  Reading West - 20 August 2014
70 - link to to Re: Bus discrimination case
70 - link to to Re: Caption competition.
69 - link to to Re: Picture Quiz - Bumper selection. October 2014
67 - link to to Re: Hot trains
65 - link to to Re: Odd one out?
63 - link to to Re: Trainspotters "banned" following vandalism at Cheltenham Spa railway station
62 - link to to Re: HS2 (The next High Speed line(s)) - Government proposals, alternative routes and general discussion
61 - link to to Re: RMT (National Union of Rail, Maritime & Transport Workers) to ballot for industrial action.
60 - link to to Re: Train hits fallen signal between Reading and Newbury - 17 November 2014
54 - link to to Re: Flooding Disruption January 2014
52 - link to to Re: Bristol-Oxford Direct Service
52 - link to to Re: Imperial and/or metric units. Discussion on the use and teaching of
51 - link to to Re: Perils of ignoring Pick Up only at Reading
50 - link to to Re: Mobile friendly site
50 - link to to Re: Weekend Traffic
50 - link to to Re: Saturday HST to Weymouth
50 - link to to Re: Future of the Railways in Global Climate Change Conditions

Note - a handful of these post links may lead you to member-only areas.  We have
* - a "Frequent Poster Club" where members who have made more than a threshold of posts can discuss things with other regulars
* - a "TransWilts CRP (Community Rail Partnership) board" for supporters of the TransWilts Community Rail Partnership where we place messages back and forth between ourselves - please ask if you want to be added to that area; we keep it separate as we're aware that some members don't wish to be flooded with information about a relatively small (at the moment) service, and we don't want to worry newcomers / guests with talk about issues that need resolving / improving, but in reality are pretty obtuse or specialist matters that effect only a small number of people.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2015, 11:38:02 by grahame » Logged

Coffee Shop Admin, Acting Chair of Melksham Rail User Group, Option 24/7 Melksham Rep
Do you have something you would like to add to this thread, or would you like to raise a new question at the Coffee Shop? Please [register] (it is free) if you have not done so before, or login (at the top of this page) if you already have an account - we would love to read what you have to say!

You can find out more about how this forum works [here] - that will link you to a copy of the forum agreement that you can read before you join, and tell you very much more about how we operate. We are an independent forum, provided and run by customers of Great Western Railway, for customers of Great Western Railway and we welcome railway professionals as members too, in either a personal or official capacity. Views expressed in posts are not necessarily the views of the operators of the forum.

As well as posting messages onto existing threads, and starting new subjects, members can communicate with each other through personal messages if they wish. And once members have made a certain number of posts, they will automatically be admitted to the "frequent posters club", where subjects not-for-public-domain are discussed; anything from the occasional rant to meetups we may be having ...

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