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TOPIC: More frequent trains from May, but the complete new service will be delayed until December 2019

More frequent trains from May, but the complete new service will be delayed until December 2019 16 May 2018 18:41 #3833

It's just be drawn to my attention that assuming I've read it correctly from 28 Oct to 2 December PG will be on the Sunday bus replacement "service" between Stevenage and Ally Pally and vice-versa. I don't recall an explanation for this. Inset days for driver training? Leaves on the line? Trees being felled?

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More frequent trains from May, but the complete new service will be delayed until December 2019 20 May 2018 08:58 #3848

Friday evening returning from town, “train cancelled due to lack of drivers”; Saturday evening returning from town, “train cancelled due to lack of drivers”; and looking at the situation today in planning a town trip it’s a complete nightmare – “reduced service due to a shortage of train crew”. Here, on the threshold of the new timetable with apparently even more trains, the present shambles continues. Who will be driving them all?

As with so many iterations of the East Coast main line, it seems you bid unrealistically high to win the franchise and then rip costs out, to passenger detriment, in a vain attempt to square the position. I can’t help but think that a train (transport) service focused on viable travelling for all, rather than one focused on profit for a few is what is needed. TfL can't take over this line fast enough for me.

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More frequent trains from May, but the complete new service will be delayed until December 2019 21 May 2018 09:21 #3849

Shambles today, first commute day of the new timetable and, despite telling customers to prep for this for months, GNR werre clearly totally unprepared. First train 33 minutes delayed, next 2 cancelled.

Thankfully I noticed before leaving home so went the long way round via the tube.

Not drivers is always the worst excuse. Grossly overpaid and on extremely cushty hours - no excuses for not having a packed rosta.

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RailPlan2020: How's it going so far? 30 May 2018 19:28 #3888

Basil Clarke Basil Clarke's Avatar Topic Author Online
Before writing this comment, I thought I'd better check how the trains are doing today. Well, would you know it? Disruption between Finsbury Park and Moorgate, trains being diverted into Kings Cross, all trains through PG running late.

We're now a week and a half into RailPlan2020. I haven't been checking often enough to see how our trains are affected and I have taken advantage of the extra evening trains, so I can't complain personally. But where things have gone seriously awry are the new Thameslink services that should be running via St Pancras International, from Peterborough or Cambridge in the north to Brighton or Horsham in the south, with a stop at Finsbury Park which should in theory provide convenient cross-platform interchange for passengers to or from Palmers Green. Well, almost all of those services have been cancelled.

As always, the most comprehensive source of information about what's happening (or not happening) is London Reconnections. Check out these recent articles:

The Cicadas Take Flight: Explaining The May Timetable Changes

The Politics of Thameslink’s Troubles

Thameslink The Musical Act 4, Scene 3: The Grayling Letter

Finally, some possible good news. According to railstaff.uk, the transport secretary recently said in parliament that some Great Northern services might be transferred to Transport for London/London Overground. If that's true, he must have been referring to the Moorgate services. And if it happens, we're likely to have our stations improved beyond recognition (they might even do some cleaning on the Great Northern side of the stations that it shares with the Victoria Line - or am I being ridiculously optimistic?)

See Some Great Northern services could be transferred to London Overground

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RailPlan2020: How's it going so far? 01 Jun 2018 17:34 #3895

Before Platform 4 at Highbury &Islington station (Northbound to Palmers Green etc) is wholly engulfed in black dirt, our friendly rail service provider has removed the route plans (themselves barely legible under the grime) in recent weeks. It looks as if in all respects Great Northern is going nowhere. When I asked GN about cleaning the place up (making the point that if the black dirt had attached itself to the route plans and posters, it must also spread itself over potential passengers waiting for a train to turn up) initially the reply was that keeping the platform clean was TfL’s responsibility. TfL in turn made clear that Platform 4 was managed/mismanaged by GN. Of course, the grime is created by GN services, when running. Trivial though this may be within the larger picture of Govia’s woeful conduct of its franchise, it seems emblematic of its failures.

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More frequent trains from May, but the complete new service will be delayed until December 2019 02 Jun 2018 12:30 #3898

Stuck outside Finsbury Park for over 10 minutes, “waiting for a platform”, that coming later in my day after a previous train, apparently on its way, instead hit the local Bermuda Triangle for GN rolling stock. The argument for rail privatisation, as I recall it, was never that we should move towards 57 million separate UK ticket prices (who can believe that’s where we’ve reached) but that competition would shake things about to passenger benefit. I don’t see a lot of competition on our line and, given the constraints of Moorgate station, very much doubt that will ever happen. With 18 years to plan, more than spent rearming and prosecuting the Second World War, the new timetable is clearly a total disaster. Just look at the wider UK picture before this latest shambles: fares up by 45% in real terms since privatisation; punctuality reaching a ten year low; while overcrowding up by a third since 2011. With things clearly going further downhill, fast, means something – someone – has to give; surely time for the Secretary of State to walk, a single control for national rail to be run for passengers and not profit and the Hertford line to move into the arms of the integrated TfL London transport network.

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