Monday, August 10, 2009

What a way to run a railway...

Chaos on the East Coast Main Line this morning.

Some sort of breakdown north of Peterborough blocked the line, meaning no London-bound National Express trains after the 8.04.

As the platforms backed up with people, First Capital Connect added to the misery with further delays.

The station announcer seemed to have an endless resource in excuses as first a train was cancelled due to "earlier signalling problems", then another was delayed due to "awaiting a crew" and a third late due to "lack of availability of carriages".

Was I naive to think there was a simple solution to FCC's apparent dilemma of a train crew without a train as well as a train without a crew...surely it didn't need the brains of an Arch Bishop to get at least something moving?

When it looked like the earliest train to get to London would be the 9.15 FCC service which "only" stops at Huntingdon, St Neots, Biggleswade and Stevenage before Kings Cross, everyone gravitated to Platform 3A to patiently wait...

(One commuter on Platform 2 lost his rag, which provided a few minutes entertainment as he remonstrated with a gaggle of rather self-important station staff, one of whom arrogantly warned him: "Don't push it!"

Which of course, would be rather sensible advice, for railway staff to have followed in the circumstances...)

Needless to say, the 9.15 was also seriously late. And with no indication of when it might actually turn up, passengers started moving back to Platform 2 where the even slower 9.23 was waiting with the prospect of SEVEN station stops before KX...

What a way to run a railway...


Anonymous said...

Phil, I am glad to see you back and commenting again.

Now this is a post from a forum I would not expect you to normally read (or admit to reading !)

But if possible can you put your green anorak on and point chummy in an appropriate direction.

Regards GW

Anonymous said...

Ooops !