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Old 23rd April 2017, 21:38   #12511
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Originally Posted by Chrisgr31 View Post
I don't object to the idea of checking tickets at stations nor issuing penalty fares, except that is not how the role was sold to passengers. I am not sure that issuing penalty fares features as an aspect of customer service passengers want, especially when on some lines there is a belief you can buy tickets on the train. Well its not a belief, most of the time its a fact!

There does appear to be a need to do more ticket checking as that has in my experience reduced since the dispute started.
It is no secret that many Southern stations were (fairly) recently added to the PF scheme, and in reaction to a theoretical enhancement in said scheme, all stations gained a TVM at the very least, to allow passengers to prove intent to buy the right ticket before boarding; though stations such as those previously without any ticketing facilities are often those where it is still possible to buy onboard without hindrance anyway, and also those where TVM faults are resolved less frequently.

This has led to an unclear situation for passengers from a "payment culture" point of view, added to the fact that even the trained ex-revenue grade OBSs generally haven't issued PFs since early winter, and the fact that no change in policy on how to treat those buying on board seems to have been distributed to those retained as conductors.

Passenger Hosts, ie. rebadged revenue staff employed on the GTR routes under the TL & GN branding, occasionally make an appearance on roving patrols which take them around the Southern network, and definitely do still issue Penalty Fares, undertake MG11s, etc. This is a bit of a culture shock to passengers, though not unwarranted in some situations.

From a customer service point of view, it's my view that an enhanced policy is most certainly needed for revenue protection, and this may also pay back a return of reduced levels of antisocial behaviour, which improves the environment for customers as much as anything! I believe I once mentioned my observations on here that the difference in a regular and irregular staff presence was best seen by comparing late night and overnight services run by either Southern or Thameslink (formerly FCC, of course) on the BML corridor, and the improved environment and security visibly provided by a dedicated member of onboard staff such as a conductor was a great advertisement for them. This sort of reason is one of the pointers towards (at the very least) rostered onboard staff of some description.

Issuing penalty fares at stations could theoretically allow greater familiarity of OBSs with dealing with ticketless passengers, with whom some may well have felt uncomfortable until now, particularly new entrants - or ex-revenue staff not used to sticking to a dedicated train, or lone working! This could then be extended to their diagrams on trains, with guidelines on "when to stop" if they'd be otherwise unable to work the train safely. I'm not convinced it would be easy to devise such a solution, particularly given how closely-packed the station calls and passenger requirements are on some of the trains OBSs do work on.

There are signs that the revenue culture on the Southern network may change to include greater deterrents. There are mutterings about conductors being able to issue PFs on Envoy at some undefined future point, with OBSs presumably being able to do them electronically before then, and of course GTR's sister company Southeastern has recently switched to a policy of only selling full-price Anytime fares on the train, which is very slightly impacting Redhill to Tonbridge Line services.

All this being said - and I wish to use my words carefully - I can see that it would require great talent to reintroduce robust deterrents to passengers boarding trains without tickets, and sadly I suppose it may be seen that the GTR franchise may not readily attract that sort of skill! I think passengers should be ready for more severe penalties for not actively buying a ticket at the first opportunity, though. Ticketless travel from these people may become more common as trains get longer and busier, so those who thought they could buy on board don't end up doing so, and therefore work out that they'll probably get away without paying anyway. There's also every chance that a lack of enforcement could attract a general culture of lawlessness, which is most unwelcome!
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Old 23rd April 2017, 21:48   #12512
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Originally Posted by DarloRich View Post


The strike at magnet in darlo lasted for years
Oh right cheers, so basically its down to both sides to agree however long it takes,

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Old 23rd April 2017, 22:45   #12513
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...but I am all for staff sitting around on Cover or Spare turns to be used for station revenue duties. There's still a reasonable amount of that at Southern, which can be very beneficial for prompt action on uncovered duties, but could still perhaps be improved on at times.
Anything that helps encourage high '(un)natural wastage' to get former Guards off the payroll will satisfy the raison d'etre for the OBS grade. Turning spare turns from being one the best things about the job you've done into what many might consider to be the worst aspect's is ideal!
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Old 23rd April 2017, 23:57   #12514
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Anything that helps encourage high '(un)natural wastage' to get former Guards off the payroll will satisfy the raison d'etre for the OBS grade. Turning spare turns from being one the best things about the job you've done into what many might consider to be the worst aspect's is ideal!
For a long time, many people really haven't considered it to be the best thing at Southern. One or two days here and there at a good TOC and/or decent messroom are really nice, but a combination of going through several imposed reduced timetables where everyone was sitting around, poor morale and chronic messroom moaning do not a happy cover turn make!

There are plenty of people I've heard say "I wish they'd just give me an Avantix and let me go and queue-bust", and I suspect the attitude to standing around on a gateline waiting for the odd ticketless passenger (obviously of the sort who doesn't just vault the barriers anyway) would be much the same.
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Old Yesterday, 05:27   #12515
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It is no secret that many Southern stations were (fairly) recently added to the PF scheme, and in reaction to a theoretical enhancement in said scheme, all stations gained a TVM at the very least, to allow passengers to prove intent to buy the right ticket before boarding; though stations such as those previously without any ticketing facilities are often those where it is still possible to buy onboard without hindrance anyway, and also those where TVM faults are resolved less frequently.

This has led to an unclear situation for passengers from a "payment culture" point of view, added to the fact that even the trained ex-revenue grade OBSs generally haven't issued PFs since early winter, and the fact that no change in policy on how to treat those buying on board seems to have been distributed to those retained as conductors.

Passenger Hosts, ie. rebadged revenue staff employed on the GTR routes under the TL & GN branding, occasionally make an appearance on roving patrols which take them around the Southern network, and definitely do still issue Penalty Fares, undertake MG11s, etc. This is a bit of a culture shock to passengers, though not unwarranted in some situations.

From a customer service point of view, it's my view that an enhanced policy is most certainly needed for revenue protection, and this may also pay back a return of reduced levels of antisocial behaviour, which improves the environment for customers as much as anything! I believe I once mentioned my observations on here that the difference in a regular and irregular staff presence was best seen by comparing late night and overnight services run by either Southern or Thameslink (formerly FCC, of course) on the BML corridor, and the improved environment and security visibly provided by a dedicated member of onboard staff such as a conductor was a great advertisement for them. This sort of reason is one of the pointers towards (at the very least) rostered onboard staff of some description.

Issuing penalty fares at stations could theoretically allow greater familiarity of OBSs with dealing with ticketless passengers, with whom some may well have felt uncomfortable until now, particularly new entrants - or ex-revenue staff not used to sticking to a dedicated train, or lone working! This could then be extended to their diagrams on trains, with guidelines on "when to stop" if they'd be otherwise unable to work the train safely. I'm not convinced it would be easy to devise such a solution, particularly given how closely-packed the station calls and passenger requirements are on some of the trains OBSs do work on.

There are signs that the revenue culture on the Southern network may change to include greater deterrents. There are mutterings about conductors being able to issue PFs on Envoy at some undefined future point, with OBSs presumably being able to do them electronically before then, and of course GTR's sister company Southeastern has recently switched to a policy of only selling full-price Anytime fares on the train, which is very slightly impacting Redhill to Tonbridge Line services.

All this being said - and I wish to use my words carefully - I can see that it would require great talent to reintroduce robust deterrents to passengers boarding trains without tickets, and sadly I suppose it may be seen that the GTR franchise may not readily attract that sort of skill! I think passengers should be ready for more severe penalties for not actively buying a ticket at the first opportunity, though. Ticketless travel from these people may become more common as trains get longer and busier, so those who thought they could buy on board don't end up doing so, and therefore work out that they'll probably get away without paying anyway. There's also every chance that a lack of enforcement could attract a general culture of lawlessness, which is most unwelcome!

Yet again, I find myself applauding the clarity of your explanations. Many thanks. You wouldn't care to take on the role of spokesman for the RMT I suppose.........
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Old Yesterday, 06:42   #12516
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My apologies regarding signwriters (it appears i jumped the gun and for that i apologise). I misinterpreted the discussion to mean contracting out in regards of cleaners etc and not this specific item. For that i am sorry i have had a look at a couple of signwriting companies and yes they do pay more then minimum wage starting at around £18,000 and upwards of around £35,000 so for that statement i made i was wrong.

With regards of trying to shut down debate/discussion i have been warned to only speak on topic and not to speak off topic as i have been banned for going off topic, so i try to stick rigidly to what the forum thread is directly about and to stay within the rules of forum.
No problem. Thanks for the clarification.
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Old Yesterday, 12:27   #12517
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But of course it's cheaper as it means the staff employed by these outside contractors are entitled to nothing that is provided by the toc to its own employees and the majority of these staff are on at best minimum wage at worse on zero hours. However I apologise as I have taken this thread off course from its original context.
Not the case for signwriters but true in some other. areas of work e.g. , people I know working on the busses tell me First have recently outsourced most of their cleaning operations so what are already probably the lowest payed staff will no doubt soon loose additional travel benefits etc too
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Old Yesterday, 12:40   #12518
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[QUOTE=tsr;2967834]It is no secret that many Southern stations were (fairly) recently added to the PF scheme, and in reaction to a theoretical enhancement in said scheme, all stations gained a TVM at the very least, to allow passengers to prove intent to buy the right ticket before boarding; though stations such as those previously without any ticketing facilities are often those where it is still possible to buy onboard without hindrance anyway, and also those where TVM faults are resolved less frequently.

This has led to an unclear situation for passengers from a "payment culture" point of view, added to the fact that even the trained ex-revenue grade OBSs generally haven't issued PFs since early winter, and the fact that no change in policy on how to treat those buying on board seems to have been distributed to those retained as conductors.

Passenger Hosts, ie. rebadged revenue staff employed on the GTR routes under the TL & GN branding, occasionally make an appearance on roving patrols which take them around the Southern network, and definitely do still issue Penalty Fares, undertake MG11s, etc. This is a bit of a culture shock to passengers, though not unwarranted in some situations.

From a customer service point of view, it's my view that an enhanced policy is most certainly needed for revenue protection, and this may also pay back a return of reduced levels of antisocial behaviour, which improves the environment for customers as much as anything! I believe I once mentioned my observations on here that the difference in a regular and irregular staff presence was best seen by comparing late night and overnight services run by either Southern or Thameslink (formerly FCC, of course) on the BML corridor, and the improved environment and security visibly provided by a dedicated member of onboard staff such as a conductor was a great advertisement for them. This sort of reason is one of the pointers towards (at the very least) rostered onboard staff of some description.

Issuing penalty fares at stations could theoretically allow greater familiarity of OBSs with dealing with ticketless passengers, with whom some may well have felt uncomfortable until now, particularly new entrants - or ex-revenue staff not used to sticking to a dedicated train, or lone working! This could then be extended to their diagrams on trains, with guidelines on "when to stop" if they'd be otherwise unable to work the train safely. I'm not convinced it would be easy to devise such a solution, particularly given how closely-packed the station calls and passenger requirements are on some of the trains OBSs do work on.

There are signs that the revenue culture on the Southern network may change to include greater deterrents. There are mutterings about conductors being able to issue PFs on Envoy at some undefined future point, with OBSs presumably being able to do them electronically before then, and of course GTR's sister company Southeastern has recently switched to a policy of only selling full-price Anytime fares on the train, which is very slightly impacting Redhill to Tonbridge Line services.

All this being said - and I wish to use my words carefully - I can see that it would require great talent to reintroduce robust deterrents to passengers boarding trains without tickets, and sadly I suppose it may be seen that the GTR franchise may not readily attract that sort of skill! I think passengers should be ready for more severe penalties for not actively buying a ticket at the first opportunity, though. Ticketless travel from these people may become more common as trains get longer and busier, so those who thought they could buy on board don't end up doing so, and therefore work out that they'll probably get away without paying anyway. There's also every chance that a lack of enforcement could attract a general culture of lawlessness, which is most unwelcome![/QUOTE]


It's already there - first class is seen as fair game for most, on the basis of the extreme likelihood of not being checked and even then only being asked to move.

However, I did witness a regular first class abuser the other day be caught out by the Southeastern guard on my Tonbridge train between East Croydon and Redhill. He was large and about 25 and she was diminutive and about 60. She charged him an additional sum for first class travel, initially from Clapham Junction to Redhill, but he objected with the feeble excuse that "there were no seats"! He started swearing about the situation (i.e. being caught) and generally being obnoxious and petulant but she stood her ground politely. She compromised on the additional fare only applying CJ to EC, as he moved to standard once she issued the fare after EC.

Good for her for standing firm. I was ready to step in if necessary, being much more his size than she was, but it proved unnecessary!
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Old Yesterday, 14:06   #12519
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Not the case for signwriters but true in some other. areas of work e.g. , people I know working on the busses tell me First have recently outsourced most of their cleaning operations so what are already probably the lowest payed staff will no doubt soon loose additional travel benefits etc too
Yes this where i got mixed up as i thought that the subject was general outsourcing and not the specialised job. My experience of cleaners working for the likes of ISS, Servest, John Laing and most of the others was they were treated like someone who has trod in some excrement on the road. Some wouldnt even pay minimum wage and would use this against people whose English was poor. Many of the cleaners i came into contact with was that many of them were totally over qualified but it was the only job they could get which is such a shame.
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Old Yesterday, 15:50   #12520
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...
However, I did witness a regular first class abuser the other day be caught out by the Southeastern guard on my Tonbridge train between East Croydon and Redhill. He was large and about 25 and she was diminutive and about 60. She charged him an additional sum for first class travel, initially from Clapham Junction to Redhill, but he objected with the feeble excuse that "there were no seats"! He started swearing about the situation (i.e. being caught) and generally being obnoxious and petulant but she stood her ground politely. She compromised on the additional fare only applying CJ to EC, as he moved to standard once she issued the fare after EC.

Good for her for standing firm. I was ready to step in if necessary, being much more his size than she was, but it proved unnecessary!
Perhaps worth sending a 'well done' to Southeastern about her doing a good job?

Southeastern contact form
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