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December 18, 2017, 04:36:15 PM *
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Author Topic: Service meltdown - advice is to use other means to travel  (Read 6043 times)
grahame
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« Reply #135 on: October 08, 2017, 10:38:35 AM »

Think of the effect cancelking say, two trips to Portsmouth/Southampton or Weymouth would cause

It is indeed no surprise when the TransWilts gets cancelled. Experience shows us that.

Whether it's best to cancel the TransWilts or (say) a Westbury to Bristol, with the following Cardiff - Portsmouth picking up some of the calls instead, is a decision which has to be made.  There are going to be certain services which are key ones and I agree with you, Chris, that they should be priorised.  To compare them to the TransWilts - which is not what I did - is a fallacious argument.
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TransWilts Rail - Linking North to West and South 9 times a day. [see here]
WelshBluebird
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« Reply #136 on: October 08, 2017, 11:47:00 PM »

Certainly didn't give a good impression today. Just one 153 on the 12.23 Oldfield Park to Bristol Temple Meads (ex Castle Cary). Just about managed to squeeze on, but at least a couple of people left on the platform at Oldfield Park (including a lady with a bike). Guard only just managed to squeeze back on and into the cab! Then at Keynsham a couple of people just about managed to squeeze off but the guard pretty much told everyone on the platform don't even bother trying to get on. Some very rightfully unhappy people there, including a group who were supposed to be going for a meal in Bristol (next time I doubt they will bother with the train and will get the bus instead!).

To the lay person it must feel like GWR simply don't want their custom (which tbh, if the situation with short formed services and cancelations continues much longer, that may well be the case!).
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grahame
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« Reply #137 on: October 09, 2017, 06:14:19 AM »

To the lay person it must feel like GWR simply don't want their custom (which tbh, if the situation with short formed services and cancelations continues much longer, that may well be the case!).

Custom is already being lost - not a question of "if it continues much longer", I'm afraid.   

And the traffic that's being lost won't spring back as if there had never been a problem as and when the issues are fixed. Each train that's so short formed that people can't comfortably get on, and each train cancelled on the day it's supposed to run and is in people's plans, looses goodwill and custom not only in that train but for their future train journeys too. 

First (Great Western Railway) do want the farebox income from passengers - they do want the custom - during the current franchise, where it is profitable.  You could argue that where a service cannot run, cannot take everyone, or fails to make an advertised connection, the accountants would prefer people not to travel by train or rather by that train replacement, as it typically costs more to provide than the income generated; having them travel at another time / another day would be better for the balance sheet, should they travel at all.

Building business for the time beyond the current franchise is much muddier water.   If the state of the system and passenger base is significantly lower at the time of bidding for the next seven or so years, then bids will most likely be lower and the long term financial effects from that will be born not by the next operator, but by the public.  That may be in the form of general taxation (via the less positive franchise payment effecting the UK economy), it may be in the form of fare and other ancillary payments such as car parking charges, and it may be in the form of offering a cheaper to run lesser service in the franchise.

At times, we tend to look at (and make decisions) based on direction and rate of change, rather than on current performance. So rate of change from a very low base back to(wards) where it should be will, I expect, be a major element - and a positive one - as the current incumbents bid for the next franchise.   The cynic would suggest than a poor autumn in 2017 followed by an excellent recovery from that though 2018 could be "just what the doctor ordered", especially with so much of the blame for current problems being directly and indirectly attributable to the slippage of electrification, and with it slippage of new stock and cascades.  Of course, that does rely on an excellent recovery, or at least signs of one, in the not too distant future now ...


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TransWilts Rail - Linking North to West and South 9 times a day. [see here]
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