No trains for charity cyclists

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Chris Brady, Jun 21, 2004.

  1. Chris Brady

    Chris Brady Guest

    Despite the introduction of new rolling stock - Southern / South
    Central / ex-Connex STILL have a number of the older slam door trains.
    So why they couldn't they have used these is a moot point. I nearly
    went on the L2B run on Sunday on the spur of the moment but am now
    glad that I didn't. Indeed without rail transport back to London I
    will NEVER go on it again. It seesm to me that once again a Railco has
    decided on an anti-cyclist stance. Travelling by train in the UK is a
    nightmare anyway - period - but with a bicycle its a total nightmare.

    Intersting that Southern is so profitable that it can turn away custom
    to the tune of £20 x 5,000 = £100,000

    CJB.

    ===============================================================

    No trains for charity cyclists

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/3399873.stm

    The event started in 1976 when 30 friends rode from Hyde Park
    Cyclists taking part in the annual London to Brighton bike ride will
    not be able to get the train home this year.

    A lack of room on new high-tech rolling stock means this year, for the
    first time, participants will not be able to return to London by
    train.

    About 27,000 people take part in the charity ride each year, with many
    of them traditionally returning to the capital by train.

    Last year South Central Trains ran 30 special services, with seats
    removed from old carriages, but it has said it cannot do the same this
    year.

    They have known for some time that this would eventually happen -
    there is no ill feeling

    The event, due to take place on 20 June, runs over a 56-mile route
    from Clapham Common to Madeira Drive on Brighton seafront.

    Since 1980 it has been organised by the British Heart Foundation (BHF)
    and last year's event raised almost £2.5m.

    In 2003 about 5,000 cyclists took advantage of the special trains run
    by South Central.

    But the train firm is in the process of introducing £856m worth of new
    rolling stock and is scrapping its old trains.

    A spokesman said the new trains have room for only two or three bikes
    per carriage and cannot have the seats removed to make room for more.

    He said South Central had informed the BHF of the situation in 2002,
    to give it enough time to make alternative arrangements.


    The new trains have no guards' carriage where bikes can be stored

    The spokesman said: "In the past we were able to work with the British
    Heart Foundation to provide services, but unfortunately we are no
    longer in a position to do it.

    "They have known for some time that this would eventually happen -
    there is no ill feeling."

    Julie Sorrell, head of events for the BHF, said: "We were provided
    with plenty of advance notice from South Central Trains and have made
    alternative travel arrangements - which will include a coach and lorry
    service."

    But the CTC, the UK's national cyclists' organisation, has been more
    critical of the situation, claiming the change reflects the railway
    industry's attitude towards cyclists.

    Director Kevin Mayne said rail operators were tailoring their services
    to the needs of commuters when trains were also used by many other
    groups of people.

    He said the reduction in space which meant less room for bikes also
    affected wheelchair users and parents with children in pushchairs.
     
    Tags:


  2. In news:[email protected],
    Chris Brady <[email protected]> typed:
    > Travelling by train in the UK is a
    > nightmare anyway - period - but with a bicycle its a total nightmare.


    ITYM travelling by train in the UK can be inconvenient, and with a bike it
    may often be inconvenient.

    A
     
  3. dwb

    dwb Guest

    NewsReader wrote:
    >> Intersting that Southern is so profitable that it can turn away
    >> custom to the tune of £20 x 5,000 = £100,000

    >
    > Of course, the question could also be asked (I really *am* agnostic
    > on this topic) as to what the economic fare that should be for
    > cyclists on trains, since simple logic suggests the footprint
    > required for a passenger and accompanying bicycle is inevitably much
    > greater than that of of a normal passenger ....


    I would like to think most cyclists wouldn't mind paying a premium to be
    able to take
    their bike with them (that premium to be decided)

    The issue here was that the rolling stock in place cannot cope with these
    passengers,
    even if you were to charge them £10 000 each.

    This is different to previous years, where it could.
     
  4. Bryan

    Bryan Guest

    Dwb wrote:
    > NewsReader wrote:
    > >> Intersting that Southern is so profitable that it can turn away
    > >> custom to the tune of £20 x 5,000 = £100,000

    > >
    > > Of course, the question could also be asked (I really *am* agnostic on
    > > this topic) as to what the economic fare that should be for cyclists
    > > on trains, since simple logic suggests the footprint required for a
    > > passenger and accompanying bicycle is inevitably much greater than
    > > that of of a normal passenger ....

    > I would like to think most cyclists wouldn't mind paying a premium to be
    > able to take their bike with them (that premium to be decided)
    > The issue here was that the rolling stock in place cannot cope with
    > these passengers, even if you were to charge them £10 000 each.
    > This is different to previous years, where it could.




    The problem seems to be that new rolling stock is not being designed
    with anyone in mind but commuters. Anyone travelled ona Virgin Voyager
    over christmas? Poor shop bloke on my train was ordered to close the
    shop and take the trolley up and down the carriages, and managed to get
    2 rows in when he was confronted by bags in the aisle. The reason, there
    are no luggage spaces at the end of these carraiges and the above head
    space is 9 inches high! Seems we not only have no integrated transport
    prolicy, we have no policy in place to accommodate passengers!

    Bryan



    --
     
  5. Simon Brooke

    Simon Brooke Guest

    in message <[email protected]>, dwb
    ('[email protected]') wrote:

    > NewsReader wrote:
    >>> Intersting that Southern is so profitable that it can turn away
    >>> custom to the tune of £20 x 5,000 = £100,000

    >>
    >> Of course, the question could also be asked (I really *am* agnostic
    >> on this topic) as to what the economic fare that should be for
    >> cyclists on trains, since simple logic suggests the footprint
    >> required for a passenger and accompanying bicycle is inevitably much
    >> greater than that of of a normal passenger ....

    >
    > I would like to think most cyclists wouldn't mind paying a premium to
    > be able to take
    > their bike with them (that premium to be decided)
    >
    > The issue here was that the rolling stock in place cannot cope with
    > these passengers,
    > even if you were to charge them £10 000 each.


    The issue is that to get an old flatbed freight wagon, bolt bike racks
    on it and couple it to the end of the train would cost all of, ooooooh,
    maybe a couple of thousand nicker. But that would be an innovative
    response to customer demand, and we can't have that.

    --
    [email protected] (Simon Brooke) http://www.jasmine.org.uk/~simon/

    ;; An enamorata is for life, not just for weekends.
     
  6. Peter Masson

    Peter Masson Guest

    "dwb" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    >
    > The issue here was that the rolling stock in place cannot cope with these
    > passengers,
    > even if you were to charge them £10 000 each.
    >
    > This is different to previous years, where it could.
    >

    There's a whole fleet of trains lying idle which would appear to be very
    suitable for conveying a large number of bikes from Brighton to London. I
    refer to the Class 325 postals. Unfortunately AIUI they can't couple to
    Southern Class 375/377 or to Southern/Thameslink Class 319, so the bikes
    would have had to go in separate trains. But it does seem ridiculous that so
    much potential revenue was rejected for lack of what should have been a very
    straightforward solution.
    Peter
     
  7. Peter Clinch

    Peter Clinch Guest

    Simon Brooke wrote:

    > The issue is that to get an old flatbed freight wagon, bolt bike racks
    > on it and couple it to the end of the train would cost all of, ooooooh,
    > maybe a couple of thousand nicker. But that would be an innovative
    > response to customer demand, and we can't have that.


    "In Business" on R4 last week was all about the change in business
    language, including how it's all changing from daring to do innovative
    things to making sure you never do anything much at all. The change
    from "passengers" to "customers" was singled out as removing the basic
    imperative of getting people where they want to go from the operating
    vernacular of transport companies. It was interesting, but all rather
    sad...

    Pete.
    --
    Peter Clinch Medical Physics IT Officer
    Tel 44 1382 660111 ext. 33637 Univ. of Dundee, Ninewells Hospital
    Fax 44 1382 640177 Dundee DD1 9SY Scotland UK
    net [email protected] http://www.dundee.ac.uk/~pjclinch/
     
  8. Simon Brooke

    Simon Brooke Guest

    in message <[email protected]>, Ambrose Nankivell
    ('[email protected]') wrote:

    > In news:[email protected],
    > Chris Brady <[email protected]> typed:
    >> Travelling by train in the UK is a
    >> nightmare anyway - period - but with a bicycle its a total nightmare.

    >
    > ITYM travelling by train in the UK can be inconvenient, and with a
    > bike it may often be inconvenient.


    Nightmare. Such A Bloody Experience Never Again, to quote the
    now-defunct Belgian airline's mission statement. The last three times I
    had a business meeting in London I booked full price first class
    returns on the West Coast Main Line. The sum of lateness of those three
    return journeys was well over fifteen of your English hours (i.e. over
    50% of the total advertised journey time), and the total time spent
    standing (when I had a booked, paid for seat) was eight hours[1] or
    getting on for a third of the total advertised journey time.

    What did I receive in compensation for this appalling performance? Why,
    vouchers redeemable against rail travel! Thanks and all that, but no
    thanks. It's no way to run a railroad.

    [1] On one journey, they'd hugely oversold second class tickets. So they
    had seated second class passengers in first class, and the guard would
    not ask these people to move or stand - so I stood all the way from
    Carlisle to London. On another, the train broke down completely at
    Milton Keynes and we were transferred to an already over-crowded
    commuter train. On this occasion we were also five hours late - on a
    five hour journey. On a third journey, on the return leg they'd
    overbooked first class, so another gentleman had a reservation ticket
    for the same seat as mine. Fortunately he was only travelling to Crewe.

    --
    [email protected] (Simon Brooke) http://www.jasmine.org.uk/~simon/
    ;; This email may contain confidential or otherwise privileged
    ;; information, though, quite frankly, if you're not the intended
    ;; recipient and you've got nothing better to do than read other
    ;; folks' emails then I'm glad to have brightened up your sad little
    ;; life a tiny bit.
     
  9. Ian G Batten

    Ian G Batten Guest

    In article <[email protected]>,
    Simon Brooke <[email protected]> wrote:
    > The issue is that to get an old flatbed freight wagon, bolt bike racks
    > on it and couple it to the end of the train would cost all of, ooooooh,
    > maybe a couple of thousand nicker. But that would be an innovative


    And might, just might, be cleared for 60mph running, thus causing the
    train to occupy additional paths. Seen the cost of those? And that's
    before we point out ``couple? with that?'' given that multiple units
    aren't equipped with any couplers that freight stock uses. And then
    there's the matter of brakes, as if it's fitted stock you'd need to be
    able to ensure the brakes worked correctly, and for unfitted stock you'd
    need a safety case.

    ian
     
  10. dwb

    dwb Guest

    Ian G Batten wrote:
    > In article <[email protected]>,
    > Simon Brooke <[email protected]> wrote:
    >> The issue is that to get an old flatbed freight wagon, bolt bike
    >> racks on it and couple it to the end of the train would cost all of,
    >> ooooooh, maybe a couple of thousand nicker. But that would be an
    >> innovative

    >
    > And might, just might, be cleared for 60mph running, thus causing the
    > train to occupy additional paths. Seen the cost of those? And that's
    > before we point out ``couple? with that?'' given that multiple units
    > aren't equipped with any couplers that freight stock uses. And then
    > there's the matter of brakes, as if it's fitted stock you'd need to be
    > able to ensure the brakes worked correctly, and for unfitted stock
    > you'd need a safety case.


    Put them on the roof ;-)

    (the bicycles, not the people)
     
  11. Mark South

    Mark South Guest

    "Ambrose Nankivell" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > In news:[email protected],
    > Chris Brady <[email protected]> typed:
    > > Travelling by train in the UK is a
    > > nightmare anyway - period - but with a bicycle its a total nightmare.

    >
    > ITYM travelling by train in the UK can be inconvenient, and with a bike it
    > may often be inconvenient.


    ITYM "Travelling by train in the UK is almost always inconvenient, and with a
    bike it is a dead certainty that it will be inconvenient."
    --
    "I'm constantly shocked at how low ARKites opinions are
    of me. Probably shouldn't be, but I am." - Stacia in ARK
     
  12. "Simon Brooke" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:e06jq1-
    > The issue is that to get an old flatbed freight wagon, bolt bike racks
    > on it and couple it to the end of the train would cost all of, ooooooh,
    > maybe a couple of thousand nicker. But that would be an innovative
    > response to customer demand, and we can't have that.


    But the Health and Sanity Executive would need to approve the bicycle
    bolting system. It would probably take them a year or two.
    --
    Bruce Fletcher
    Stronsay, Orkney
    http://uk.geocities.com/[email protected]/
     
  13. Jack Taylor

    Jack Taylor Guest

    "Peter Masson" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    >
    > There's a whole fleet of trains lying idle which would appear to be very
    > suitable for conveying a large number of bikes from Brighton to London. I
    > refer to the Class 325 postals. Unfortunately AIUI they can't couple to
    > Southern Class 375/377 or to Southern/Thameslink Class 319, so the bikes
    > would have had to go in separate trains. But it does seem ridiculous that

    so
    > much potential revenue was rejected for lack of what should have been a

    very
    > straightforward solution.


    Although the 325s are privately-owned (by Royal Mail) and are, currently,
    not serviceable. Nevertheless, if GBRf do come to be operating these units
    later in the year, on behalf of Royal Mail, it might be the kind of
    innovative business opportunity that they are keen on exploiting!
     
  14. Mark South wrote:

    > ITYM "Travelling by train in the UK is almost always inconvenient,
    > and with a bike it is a dead certainty that it will be inconvenient."


    For values of "always" not including any train journey I've made in the last
    year.

    --
    Guy
    --
    May contain traces of irony. Contents liable to settle after posting.
    http://www.chapmancentral.co.uk
     
  15. Peter Clinch

    Peter Clinch Guest

    Mark South wrote:

    > ITYM "Travelling by train in the UK is almost always inconvenient, and with a
    > bike it is a dead certainty that it will be inconvenient."


    Where "bike" != "folding bike, especially Brompton".

    Pete.
    --
    Peter Clinch Medical Physics IT Officer
    Tel 44 1382 660111 ext. 33637 Univ. of Dundee, Ninewells Hospital
    Fax 44 1382 640177 Dundee DD1 9SY Scotland UK
    net [email protected] http://www.dundee.ac.uk/~pjclinch/
     
  16. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On Mon, 21 Jun 2004 13:30:26 GMT someone who may be Bryan
    <[email protected]> wrote this:-

    >The problem seems to be that new rolling stock is not being designed
    >with anyone in mind but commuters.


    Largely correct. However, that is the way government wants it and
    that is the way government has specified new trains via their agents
    the Department of Roads, Franchise Director and (shadow) "Strategic"
    Rail Authority (in chronological order).

    >there are no luggage spaces at the end of these carraiges


    Not quite. There are some luggage spaces at the ends and there are
    some in the middle. These will take large luggage and recently some
    of the end ones were expanded by removing two seats to give a space
    for very large items of luggage. There is also, unlike earlier
    trains, space designed under the seats for smaller bags, but few
    passengers realise this and Virgin are not good at pointing it out.

    >and the above head space is 9 inches high!


    It takes my rucksack and my various bags.


    --
    David Hansen, Edinburgh | PGP email preferred-key number F566DA0E
    I will always explain revoked keys, unless the UK government
    prevents me using the RIP Act 2000.
     
  17. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On Mon, 21 Jun 2004 17:20:31 +0200 someone who may be "Mark South"
    <[email protected]> wrote this:-

    >ITYM "Travelling by train in the UK is almost always inconvenient, and with a
    >bike it is a dead certainty that it will be inconvenient."


    That's funny. I see people with bikes on many of the train journeys
    that I make. They seldom seem to be inconvenienced.


    --
    David Hansen, Edinburgh | PGP email preferred-key number F566DA0E
    I will always explain revoked keys, unless the UK government
    prevents me using the RIP Act 2000.
     
  18. In news:[email protected],
    Just zis Guy, you know? <[email protected]> typed:
    > Mark South wrote:
    >
    >> ITYM "Travelling by train in the UK is almost always inconvenient,
    >> and with a bike it is a dead certainty that it will be inconvenient."

    >
    > For values of "always" not including any train journey I've made in
    > the last year.


    Or me, unless you count the time everyone started getting on the train when
    I was trying to wheel my bike off round a narrow corner, so I had to carry
    it along the carriage to get it to the door without a logjam in it. It was
    mainly a failure of my assertiveness, but it was decidedly humiliating.

    I've also misread a timetable to very annoying effect in the last year, with
    the assumption it would be the same as 5 years ago, which it wasn't.

    But apart from that, no major hassles.

    A
     
  19. Gonzalez

    Gonzalez Guest

    On 21 Jun 2004 05:16:58 -0700, [email protected] (Chris
    Brady) wrote:

    >Despite the introduction of new rolling stock - Southern / South
    >Central / ex-Connex STILL have a number of the older slam door trains.
    >So why they couldn't they have used these is a moot point. I nearly
    >went on the L2B run on Sunday on the spur of the moment but am now
    >glad that I didn't. Indeed without rail transport back to London I
    >will NEVER go on it again. It seesm to me that once again a Railco has
    >decided on an anti-cyclist stance. Travelling by train in the UK is a
    >nightmare anyway - period - but with a bicycle its a total nightmare.


    A lightweight bike bag is a simple low tech solution. It involves
    removing wheels, pedals and turning the handlebars 90 degrees. A bit
    of a hassle, admittedly, but it works well enough on the French train
    network.
     
  20. Gonzalez

    Gonzalez Guest

    On Mon, 21 Jun 2004 17:20:31 +0200, "Mark South"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >"Ambrose Nankivell" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    >news:[email protected]
    >> In news:[email protected],
    >> Chris Brady <[email protected]> typed:
    >> > Travelling by train in the UK is a
    >> > nightmare anyway - period - but with a bicycle its a total nightmare.

    >>
    >> ITYM travelling by train in the UK can be inconvenient, and with a bike it
    >> may often be inconvenient.

    >
    >ITYM "Travelling by train in the UK is almost always inconvenient, and with a
    >bike it is a dead certainty that it will be inconvenient."


    I've had nothing but good experiences in the UK. Certainly better
    than in France where a bike bag is a near necessity if you want to use
    the TGV.

    Recent journeys with a bike have included, Paddington to Totnes,
    Paddington to Swansea, Paddington to Taunton, Lee to Waterloo East,
    Lee to London Bridge, Lee to Charing Cross, Paddington to Penzance,
    Waterloo to Witley, Waterloo to Havant return, London Bridge to
    Headcorn, Waterloo to Paris Gare du Nord return, Lockerbie to Euston.
    Never any hassle.
     
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