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Author Topic: Rail fares  (Read 20456 times)

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Victor M

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #55 on: August 31, 2014, 12:13:52 PM »
Quote
I have now had a response from TfGM and I have copied it below, it appears that a disabled person needs to contact Northern Rail 24hrs. in advance and they will organise someone to be there! Any volunteers to put this to the test?

I have responded to TfGM rep here is a copy of my email#
Thanks for your response, unfortunately I think it is would be better if you contacted Northern Rail and see what they would do in these circumstances. If their answer is that they would arrange someone to be in attendance then you would be in a position to then publicise this in any future literature.
Please let me know what they say.


I await their response

corium

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #54 on: August 27, 2014, 12:56:24 PM »
Well let's hope there is some improved service. The ticket machine was broken Sat - Tuesday at least, so not able to collect prepaid tickets & of course the booking office was having a break when my wife went to ask how she was supposed to travel.

Dave

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #53 on: August 27, 2014, 12:47:36 PM »
That's interesting - as Victor says, it would be even more interesting to find out whether the system actually works.

Victor M

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #52 on: August 27, 2014, 08:24:57 AM »
I have now had a response from TfGM and I have copied it below, it appears that a disabled person needs to contact Northern Rail 24hrs. in advance and they will organise someone to be there! Any volunteers to put this to the test?

Here is a copy of the email I received yesterday

This is a matter for the train operator to deal with and I suggest you contact Northern Rail direct.

However, before doing so, check the website;

http://www.nationalrail.co.uk/stations_destinations/disabled_passengers.aspx

The site states;

‘Information for disabled passengers

Travel Assistance
Accessible stations and Stations Made Easy
Mobility ScootersDiscounts
Train Facilities

Further Information This page is a summary of information available on the National Rail Enquiries website to help make your journey go as smoothly as possible. Clicking on underlined words will take you to a page containing more detailed information on each topic.

Travel assistance
 
Rail services are now far more accessible than they were in the past and many disabled people are able to use the rail network without assistance.

We will always do our best to help disabled passengers that need assistance, but if you need help when travelling by rail, it is best to book assistance in advance so that we can ensure that any help you may need is provided.

In particular, we would recommend that you book assistance if you:
•    Have a mobility or other disability that means you find getting on and off trains difficult;
•    Are a wheelchair user (on most services you will need to use a boarding ramp and, on some services reserve a wheelchair space on the train service you wish to use);
•    Are a mobility scooter user (there are restrictions on different train operators which need to be checked, a boarding ramp will be required and possibly a reservation for the space onboard).
•    Have a sight impairment and need guiding around a station or help boarding and alighting from your train;
•    Have difficulty walking long distances – at some stations we can provide a station wheelchair or, at some larger stations, access to an electric buggy.


We recommend that you book help 24 hours before you travel. This enables us to: give you as much information as possible before your travel; make alternative arrangements for you if the station is not step free or not staffed at the time you wish to travel; and ensure that there are enough staff for all the assistance requests at a station. Overall, this allows us to provide you with the best possible assistance on the day’.

Also, please see attached (the Northern Rail Disabled Persons Guide ‘Making Rail Accessible’) which outlines the matter in detail.

The issue is one for Northern Rail to deal with, and they can be contacted on textphone 08456 045 608 or by email to- 

assistance@northernrail.org

I hope this helps.



Dave

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #51 on: August 27, 2014, 07:42:20 AM »
The lifts were paid for by Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM), they obtained the money in the form of a grant from the EU. As the lifts are on property controlled by Northern Rail they decide what they operating procedure. TfGM will blame NR for not allowing the lifts to run when the station is unmanned, NR will blame TfGM for not giving them enough funding to allow them to man the station on a Sunday.

Thanks to Victor for that - it sounds all too plausible.  However, it should not be necessary for the station to be manned in order for the lifts to be in use - as Duke rightly says, a 24-hour emergency call-out service, as widely used elsewhere, would be sufficient. 

My point about privatisation was simply that the first duty of a private company is to its shareholders, and that is as it should be, of course.  Sometimes the interests of shareholders and the public can coincide - for example, the removal of off-peak fares during the evening peak period should both increase revenue and ease overcrowding by encouraging those who can travel at other times to do so.  Although like others on this thread, I can see no justification for charging peak fares for those who travel in to Manchester in the late afternoons and evenings - that will just drive people back on to our already overcrowded roads. 

But this looks like a classic case where the interests of shareholders have triumphed over the best interests of the public, and taxpayers' money (in the form of EU funding for the lifts)  is being partially wasted because a private company won't stump up the cash to make the lifts fully available. 

Duke Fame

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #50 on: August 26, 2014, 03:13:46 PM »
This introduction of Evening Peak restrictions is just shocking; not only the changes but the speed at which they're coming in and the lack of voice the public has. A vastly better option in my opinion would have been to just increase ALL off-peak tickets - they are really quite well-priced and the huge leap up to a Peak fare has always been hard to swallow.

Another smart idea to increase revenue (since the problem is Northern now getting less subsidy from DfT) might have been to put a ticket machine at EVERY station and make it mandatory have a ticket before boarding.

But no, what we have is a full-scale crippling of off-peak travel on our railways. It is also important that even though the peak restriction is advertised as 4.01pm-6.30pm, the actual trains you'd be able to travel on with an off-peak ticket are much further apart.

For Marple, not so bad: last return train before the peak is 15:49, but then you'd have to wait until 18:49.

At Rose Hill, last afternoon off-peak return is as early as 15:34, then the frankly absurd situation of only TWO return trains after the peak, at 18:35 and 20:35.

Strines has the worst early return time of 15:14, a full 46 mins before the restrictions actually take effect! Taking the mickey is a return train at 16:02, departing a crucial one minute after the cut-off. Decide to stay later and the FIRST off-peak return which stops here is 19:49 - 1hr 19mins after the peak actually ends! Peak return is £7.70 versus £4.20 off peak.

I really hope the Friends of Strines Station can question Northern Rail about this. Since trains pass through to New Mills as often as every 30mins anyway, it shouldn't take much to change those which stop, or add more stopping, to soften this disaster.

I tend to think it's just one of the trade-offs of living out in the sticks.

rsh

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #49 on: August 26, 2014, 01:23:11 PM »
This introduction of Evening Peak restrictions is just shocking; not only the changes but the speed at which they're coming in and the lack of voice the public has. A vastly better option in my opinion would have been to just increase ALL off-peak tickets - they are really quite well-priced and the huge leap up to a Peak fare has always been hard to swallow.

Another smart idea to increase revenue (since the problem is Northern now getting less subsidy from DfT) might have been to put a ticket machine at EVERY station and make it mandatory have a ticket before boarding.

But no, what we have is a full-scale crippling of off-peak travel on our railways. It is also important that even though the peak restriction is advertised as 4.01pm-6.30pm, the actual trains you'd be able to travel on with an off-peak ticket are much further apart.

For Marple, not so bad: last return train before the peak is 15:49, but then you'd have to wait until 18:49.

At Rose Hill, last afternoon off-peak return is as early as 15:34, then the frankly absurd situation of only TWO return trains after the peak, at 18:35 and 20:35.

Strines has the worst early return time of 15:14, a full 46 mins before the restrictions actually take effect! Taking the mickey is a return train at 16:02, departing a crucial one minute after the cut-off. Decide to stay later and the FIRST off-peak return which stops here is 19:49 - 1hr 19mins after the peak actually ends! Peak return is £7.70 versus £4.20 off peak.

I really hope the Friends of Strines Station can question Northern Rail about this. Since trains pass through to New Mills as often as every 30mins anyway, it shouldn't take much to change those which stop, or add more stopping, to soften this disaster.

Duke Fame

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #48 on: August 26, 2014, 12:39:57 PM »
Still waiting for BG or DF (or anyone else) to come up with an alternative explanation as to why Northern Rail should install very expensive lifts and then allow them to be unavailable on Sundays and at other times when the station is not staffed.  Any ideas?

I'd guess it's fallen between two stools in terms of funding. I'll not claim there is no-doubt about this, it's just a guess.

I'd have thought that the stations do not really need to be manned and an emergency buttong on all stations would be useful and cheaper than paying station staff at Marple, Rose Hill or anywhere else for that matter.

Victor M

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #47 on: August 26, 2014, 08:38:54 AM »
The lifts were paid for by Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM), they obtained the money in the form of a grant from the EU. As the lifts are on property controlled by Northern Rail they decide what they operating procedure. TfGM will blame NR for not allowing the lifts to run when the station is unmanned, NR will blame TfGM for not giving them enough funding to allow them to man the station on a Sunday. I have now sent a question to TfGM to try and get a definitive statement on this.

By the way I have now had it confirmed that the concessionary pass is unaffected by the new Off Peak changes introduced by NR.

Dave

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #46 on: August 25, 2014, 11:08:33 PM »
Still waiting for BG or DF (or anyone else) to come up with an alternative explanation as to why Northern Rail should install very expensive lifts and then allow them to be unavailable on Sundays and at other times when the station is not staffed.  Any ideas?

Duke Fame

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #45 on: August 25, 2014, 07:40:05 PM »
I was speculating (hence the word ''presumably'), but I'm open minded, as ever  ;).  If BG or anyone else can suggest an alternative explanation then it would be good to hear it. 

You finish with the most stupid "The result of privatisation again, no doubt." you can't hide behind ''presumably" and finish with a "no doubt"

Dave

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #44 on: August 25, 2014, 06:08:49 PM »
I was speculating (hence the word ''presumably'), but I'm open minded, as ever  ;).  If BG or anyone else can suggest an alternative explanation then it would be good to hear it. 

Bowden Guy

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #43 on: August 25, 2014, 09:32:18 AM »
Dave, do you gave any evidence for the statements you made in your final paragraph? You're usually quite hot on the importance of "evidence".

Dave

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #42 on: August 25, 2014, 07:58:19 AM »
It's probably an 'elf 'n safety issue.

If that's the reason (and I can't think of any other) then it's a cop-out.  Marpleexile blames GMPTE, but I believe Northern Rail operates the local stations in this area?

Lifts invariably have an emergency  button so that if they get stuck, passengers can speak to someone via a two-way radio.  In unattended buildings (e.g.blocks of flats which often don't have 24-hour staffing), the link is to some kind of central 24-hour emergency service.  I would imagine that any company owning premises with a lift can subscribe to such a service.

Presumably Northern Rail was given a nice fat grant to provide disabled access, but is too greedy to pay a small charge for an emergency service which would enable the lifts can be used at all times they might be needed.  The result of privatisation again, no doubt.   ::)

My login is Henrietta

  • Guest
Re: Rail fares
« Reply #41 on: August 25, 2014, 12:49:00 AM »

That has always struck me as odd, as well as being most unhelpful - it must have cost many £1,000's to install those lifts, so it's a pity to see that money being wasted when they are out of use.  Does anyone understand why the lifts only work when the ticket office is open?
It's probably an 'elf 'n safety issue.