Area of "Free Return Rail Journey" on a RSP 24916 ticket ?

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MKD

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My folks have been lucky enough to win a pair of "Free Return Rail Journey" tickets in a tourism competition - the tickets have the reference "RSP 24916" on them.

In essence it's like a regular ticket but requires you to "complete your name and journey details" - ie Start+Destination stations & outward+return travel dates.

PROBLEM I'M TRYING TO RESOLVE FOR THEM IS:
What area is actually covered as they plan/want to travel from Bedford via London down to Newquay in Cornwall, but it seems they MIGHT only be entitled to go as far as Exeter/Teignmouth on it ?

Salient details from RSP 24916 ticket:

On Front
"Free Return Rail Journey... this pass entitles the holder to one free return rail journey provided by the Train Companies below:....First Capital Connect... First Great Western... [etc etc] "
"See also T&Cs and accompanying letter"

Rear
"1. This free rail ticket is valid for one adult... for one return journey between any two stations of the participating Train Companies shown over.
"To ticket inspection staff: see Train Company publications and Newsrail Express"

The "accompanying letter" is an ATOC letter to Ticket Staff saying (inter alia):
"They [the tickets] must be accepted for travel as shown - for further information see FRPP "The Manual" https://frpp.tso.co.uk/tm_ticket_stock_images/1101.aspx."

As well as the tickets and its cross-referenced [ATOC] letter, there was also an A3 map enclosed (specifically labelled "Train Services you can use on your free return journey - RSP 24916") which is a map of most of the lower half of England - and definitely includes from Bedford to London (ie FCC)
but the FGW from Paddington section of map out to the South-West gets as far as Exeter St Davids and then only the FGW/SWT lines through Teignmouth to Paignton are shown, ie not any further mainline to the West, ie nothing on to Par and then off to Newquay.

Googling threw up another RSP 24916 map which DOES includes FGW/SWT lines with two arrows off after Teignmouth "to Plymouth and Penzance"

Can anyone shed any light on the "missing bit of the map" issue:
a) Is the ATOC Letter Manual website reference any help in clarifying the area ? [Not being an industry person can't access that URL, which launches an ATOC log-in screen]
b) The Map they sent is NOT referred to by the ticket or the letter [ie my folks wouldn't HAVE to carry a map that DOESN'T include the lines to Newquay] - ie is just confusing/worrying knowing that it apparently omits travel beyond Teignmouth towards Newquay = hence this posting!
c) As the ticket so explicitly says "any two stations of the participating Train Companies" could any Ticket Inspection staff quibble - after all Newquay is listed as "Managed by First Great Western"?

I did search here for any RSP 24916 information - but nothing found.

Thanks in advance for any light/wisdom.
 
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jopsuk

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Oddd- I've found a map relating to this from 2007. It seems to be a modified version of the Network Railcard map.

This oldish copy of an ATOC newsletter specifically says "within the area shown on
the accompanying map".

I'd assume that's still the case- in which case, the limit of the validity is the grey shaded area, and they cannot use FGW to get to Exeter (but can use their local services to Paignton).
 

34D

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c) As the ticket so explicitly says "any two stations of the participating Train Companies" could any Ticket Inspection staff quibble - after all Newquay is listed as "Managed by First Great Western"?
What I would recommend is that they pop down to Bedford station, and ask the clerk to make them reservations for Bedford-Pancras and Paddington-Penzance. I am sure the clerk would do these reservations without quibble.
 

jopsuk

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I'd like to see the full wording of the current document, as I suspect Newquay isn't covered- much as I'd suspect that travel is valid on London Midland, but you can't go to Liverpool with the ticket
 

barrykas

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There should be a letter with the tickets detailing any restrictions beyond those mentioned on the tickets.

Looking at The Manual suggests that it should only be valid in the Network Area, but I'd guess that the merging of Thames Trains (remember them?) with Great Western muddied the waters on that front.

There's a second version of the ticket (RSP 24916/NR) which gives a free Standard Class journey on any TOC.

Cheers,

Barry
 

MKD

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I'd like to see the full wording of the current document, as I suspect Newquay isn't covered- much as I'd suspect that travel is valid on London Midland, but you can't go to Liverpool with the ticket
London Midland is explicitly mentioned in the list of TOCs on the TICKET.
The map is clear it goes as far as Birmingham & Bedford with them. (Other "Northern limits" are Bedford, Peterborough, Kings Lynn & Sherringham) though that's all irrelevant to my Q.



What I would recommend is that they pop down to Bedford station, and ask the clerk to make them reservations for Bedford-Pancras and Paddington-Penzance. I am sure the clerk would do these reservations without quibble.
That's a really excellent idea - assuming they will - I guess the worst the clerk can do is say "no they won't/can't". The important reservation would be Paddington-Par (to change there to the Atlantic Coast Line to Newquay).


There should be a letter with the tickets detailing any restrictions beyond those mentioned on the tickets.
No geographic restriction, nor any "map" reference, added/mentioned in the letter, indeed it re-iterates "are available for travel on the following networks: [A-Z list including...] ...First Capital Connect, First Great Western..."

----

Visiting my folks for Sunday dinner tomorrow so will call by Bedford Station with their tickets to aim to get reservations made.

MKD
 
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Mojo

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These sound like the tickets I won, which I used in June 2010.

My ticket was valid anywhere shown on the Groupsave map, which can be found here:

http://www.groupsave.co.uk/

and is slightly more extensive than the Network Railcard area.
 

jopsuk

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that's much more extensive, and more extensive than the area shown in the 2007 ATOC newsletter I linked to above. Still doesn't appear to allow travel west of Teignmouth on the line to Plymouth. It also doesn't explain the shaded area at all. It appears to just be the previous "London Connections" map! The current "London and The South East" ATOC map doesn't go out to Exeter or Weymouth any more.

I'd like to see a good quality scan of the map that MKD has.
 

MKD

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Update:

I actually tried phoning FGW first to ask about making reservations - as their website suggeted that if not offered chance to make reservations with bookings could phone to get them made.

Sounded like an Indian Call Centre.

Didn't exhibit much (any?) understanding of what I was talking about.

However they were prepared to make reservations at £5/seat-journey (only revealed AFTER all the discussions).

BUT found that date for return journey isn't yet reservable (that after being told categorically that all the seats for two trains on that day had been reserved already, ie before forcing the operator to check if they WERE available, which they weren't - "after 4pm next Friday" [something I'd learned in the past when failing to make reservations on a Rail trip to Dublin - ie not to believe what you see - ie "all gone" = "none yet"].

So bottom line no progress there with "Plan A".

Plan B = have emailed FGW to ask if they will make reservations for us, including a copy of the ATOC Marketing guy's letter about "help in any way". Worst they can do is say "no".

Plan C = the face:face idea.

MKD
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
that's much more extensive, and more extensive than the area shown in the 2007 ATOC newsletter I linked to above. Still doesn't appear to allow travel west of Teignmouth on the line to Plymouth. It also doesn't explain the shaded area at all. It appears to just be the previous "London Connections" map! The current "London and The South East" ATOC map doesn't go out to Exeter or Weymouth any more.

I'd like to see a good quality scan of the map that MKD has.
The A3 map I have is VERY similar to this 2008 Googled one
http://www.london-travelcards.com/pdf/lse_diagram_prize.pdf
except as I said in my original posting mine omits the boxed arrow "to Plymouth & Penzance" at the bottom left.

AND please don't suggest the 'Arrowed boxes' mean those bits are outside the valid area - it is SURELY only the shape of the printout/map only allows for some stations to be shown - eg why should one be able to go up the Barnstaple line as far as Crediton but not to Barnstaple ?

MKD
 

jopsuk

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The arrowed bits almost certainly indicate that's the limit of validity; given the mangling of the country required on the map anyway if they wanted to show to Penzance/Cardiff/Swansea this really shouldn't have been a problem. As for the Barnstaple line? Who knows- not everything has to make sense! Good luck to you on this one, but I'd be very worried about travelling beyond what's shown on that map and being charged a full fare because of that!
 

MKD

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Just to be clear I'm not trying to wangle something I'm not entitled to - I'm just trying to be clear what I AM entitled to.

The tickets = the baseline/starting position and they say "any two stations of the participating Train Companies shown over" and cross-reference an accompanying letter, which also doesn't mention any limits/map.

It just happens that a map WAS included in the envelope - and that NOT having the lines out to Cornwall on it - but another 2008 version of it ONLINE having the 'arrowed box to Cornwall [mainline at least]' was confusing.

I was hoping that the letter's FRPP "The Manual" URL to a site that I as Jo Public can't access would shed some light on the topic - and that some 'empowered' soul here would be able to share anything relevant from it.

Meanwhile no reply yet from the email to FGW, but their ack' said allow upto 5 days and I imagine it was such a novel query/request that they've passed it up their food chain to someone who's heard of the tickets. Hopefully they'll just issue some FOC reservations and all will be well with our plans. Time will tell.

MKD
 

MKD

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Just an update: my folks happily used the RSP 24916 tickets for a visit to Exeter/Newquay earlier this month.

ie from Bedford via London to Exeter (on way out, ie stopping short) and all the way from Newquay->Par->London->Bedford (on return).

Managed to get FGW email support to make 1st Class reservations FOC on the Paddington-Par legs of their journeys [folks were totally underwhelmed by the onboard first-class food/drink].

Interestingly they had the tickets (with stations/dates filled in) in one of the railway ticket plastic wallets and NOT ONE gate or train person asked for the ticket out of the wallet - ie didn't check stations/dates/small-print on rear, let alone the accompanying letter - though several remarked "never seen one of those before" as they were waved on their way. Whether that's because they are dear old "80yo+" types or not I don't know.

Anyway - my initial concerns were ill-founded - the printing on the ticket re validity worked just fine.

MKD
 
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