Assorted London Rail Network Questions (NR/LUL)

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ChristopherJ

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I have some questions that I feel require an explaination. I've combinded both my NR and LUL questions together to avoid having two seperate threads.

1) Since when has it became acceptable for station staff to use personal electronic toys when on duty? At Richmond tonight the South West Trains station staff were standing at the gateline, in full uniform, in front of *open* ticket barriers and playing a Nintendo DS in the middle of the public concourse. Talk about justifying your job...

2) Not related to the Railway per se but to the operators of Terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport - the tube maps at the terminal expired years ago, they still show the East London Line Extension as under construction. It opened in 2010! Not a very good or helpful example to newbie passengers whom have just arrived in the country and are not associated with the network.

3) In regards to the Heathrow Express, I have noticed that the Heathrow Central - Heathrow Terminal 4 shuttle, with a journey duration of just 3 minutes, is crewed by two drivers - one in each cab, along with a dedicated cleaner who just shuttles back and forth all day cleaning the train that in 3 minutes has no possibility of ever getting dirty. Talk about over utilisation! What's wrong with one driver just changing ends at each terminal?

Now some LUL enquires:

4) Why do the internal saloon maps on C69/77 stock only show the WimbleWare branch of the District Line? It's not very user friendly and must be very confusing for a newbie passenger (yes - a passenger, not a customer, take note LUL...) who can become baffled that station maps that display the District line as a route between Upminster/Eailing Broadway/Richmond but the internal train maps only show the District Line as a shuttle service between Wimbledon - Edgware Road.

5) Why do the dot matrix destination displays at West Brompton (and I assume the rest of the Wimbledon branch stations, I haven't checked) show District Line services towards the east as "City via Victoria"? What's wrong with "Upminster via Victoria"? or "Barking via Victoria"? Again, more confusion for unassociated users, any newbie to the network would probably assume that "City" is a station somewhere along the route.

6) The Circle Line T-Cup service is a joke and whoever designed such an absurd timetable should be locked up and the key thrown away, any passengers with luggage traveling clockwise from Paddington (Circle) have to travel one stop to Edgware Road and haul their luggage up and across the staircase to the adjacent platforms for a connecting service towards the east, there are also no lifts at the station. Under the previous and genuine Circle Line service there was no need to change. I would imagine that LUL's intention is to have all airport passengers use the H&C platforms which are miles away from the mainline concourse that Heathrow Express service arrive. If it ain't broke, don't fix it...?

7) Since the modernization of the Victoria Line the new service has been nothing but awful. Last night I had to wait 8 minutes for a service to Walthamstow and even at midnight at almost every station my train was waiting for 2-3 mins to "regulate the service". Regulating the service past midnight? What a load of absolute Bow Locks. My understanding for the installation of ATO is to increase the service capacity and reliability but it seems to have the opposite effect on the Victoria Line because services are required to wait at stations because of being constantly early and ahead of schedule. Why can't a more intense service be operated so that journey times are shorted and the service is constantly moving and not waiting for time at every station? Apart from the new rolling stock the service itself has been sabotaged - it never operated like this prior to modernization.

8) Finally, I had to chuckle because also on the Victoria Line there are advertisements for Virgin Media phone and internet deals that state you to give them a call as soon as you're out of the tunnel - except that on the Victoria Line the trains are constantly in tunnel except for at the depot at Northumberland Park - where there are no passengers...

I feel genuinely sorry for users of the London Underground who are required to negotiate through these complications, and it's only going to get worse when thousands of overseas visitors begin using the network for the 2012 Olympics.
 
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Clip

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Ill answer what I can(roughly too) - well with my thoughts on them anyway.

1) Since when has it became acceptable for station staff to use personal electronic toys when on duty? At Richmond tonight the South West Trains station staff were standing at the gateline, in full uniform, in front of *open* ticket barriers and playing a Nintendo DS in the middle of the public concourse. Talk about justifying your job...
It hasnt and thats shocking to hear

2) Not related to the Railway per se but to the operators of Terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport - the tube maps at the terminal expired years ago, they still show the East London Line Extension as under construction. It opened in 2010! Not a very good or helpful example to newbie passengers whom have just arrived in the country and are not associated with the network.
Thats just laziness on their behalf

3) In regards to the Heathrow Express, I have noticed that the Heathrow Central - Heathrow Terminal 4 shuttle, with a journey duration of just 3 minutes, is crewed by two drivers - one in each cab, along with a dedicated cleaner who just shuttles back and forth all day cleaning the train that in 3 minutes has no possibility of ever getting dirty. Talk about over utilisation! What's wrong with one driver just changing ends at each terminal?
Keep up a regular speedy service without the need for turnaround times - seems sensible to me - especially if its busy. As for the cleaner - this also seems sensible - keeps the train clean at all times and can be on the spot to pick up discarded litter/newspapers/coffee cups and any other mess like vomit. Doesnt look good to your passengers if you have dirty vehicles running round the place. And yes it may only be 6 mins return trip but I like the sound of their dedication at keeping the units clean at all times - professionalism

4) Why do the internal saloon maps on C69/77 stock only show the WimbleWare branch of the District Line? It's not very user friendly and must be very confusing for a newbie passenger (yes - a passenger, not a customer, take note LUL...) who can become baffled that station maps that display the District line as a route between Upminster/Eailing Broadway/Richmond but the internal train maps only show the District Line as a shuttle service between Wimbledon - Edgware Road.
Dont these just shuttle between these stations all day long and not go off route to anywhere else? If not then it seems sill to show a route map if a train isnt going anywhere near there doesnt it?

5) Why do the dot matrix destination displays at West Brompton (and I assume the rest of the Wimbledon branch stations, I haven't checked) show District Line services towards the east as "City via Victoria"? What's wrong with "Upminster via Victoria"? or "Barking via Victoria"? Again, more confusion for unassociated users, any newbie to the network would probably assume that "City" is a station somewhere along the route.
Are these not the services that terminate at Tower Gateway - hence 'City'. Just a hunch on that one.

8) Finally, I had to chuckle because also on the Victoria Line there are advertisements for Virgin Media phone and internet deals that state you to give them a call as soon as you're out of the tunnel - except that on the Victoria Line the trains are constantly in tunnel except for at the depot at Northumberland Park - where there are no passengers...
Probably just a blanket advertising for the whole tube system - would be costly to print up ones for each line. Also are you not out the 'tunnel' when you exit the station?
 

Eagle

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I am only able to offer insights on your even-numbered paragraphs :P

2) Not related to the Railway per se but to the operators of Terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport - the tube maps at the terminal expired years ago, they still show the East London Line Extension as under construction. It opened in 2010! Not a very good or helpful example to newbie passengers whom have just arrived in the country and are not associated with the network.
Considering there are route maps still about the system which have Aldwych on them, this isn't the worst infraction.

4) Why do the internal saloon maps on C69/77 stock only show the WimbleWare branch of the District Line? It's not very user friendly and must be very confusing for a newbie passenger (yes - a passenger, not a customer, take note LUL...) who can become baffled that station maps that display the District line as a route between Upminster/Eailing Broadway/Richmond but the internal train maps only show the District Line as a shuttle service between Wimbledon - Edgware Road.
Because that's the only part of route that C-stock operates (I agree it's confusing, and the Wimbleware should become a line in its own right IMO)


6) The Circle Line T-Cup service is a joke and whoever designed such an absurd timetable should be locked up and the key thrown away, any passengers with luggage traveling clockwise from Paddington (Circle) have to travel one stop to Edgware Road and haul their luggage up and across the staircase to the adjacent platforms for a connecting service towards the east, there are also no lifts at the station. Under the previous and genuine Circle Line service there was no need to change. I would imagine that LUL's intention is to have all airport passengers use the H&C platforms which are miles away from the mainline concourse that Heathrow Express service arrive. If it ain't broke, don't fix it...?
Except it was broke. Considering that it's essentially an infinitely long service, delays built up, and built up bigtime. Now if it didn't integrate with other lines (like the Glasgow Subway) this wouldn't be a problem as you wouldn't notice anything was wrong, but the delays on the Circle line knocked on to the other subsurface lines, and considering some of the frequencies of those go down to 6tph, 4tph or even 2tph on the outlying branches, delays become a lot more noticeable. The new route, with two definite termini timetabled with adequate turnaround padding, has increased reliability on the s/s lines quite a bit.

Passengers from Paddington wanting the c/w Circle line should use the H&C platforms which are P15 and P16 alongside the main shed, which are actually a lot easier to get to than the underground platforms at Praed Street. Signage directs them this way (i.e. I think the signs for the Praed Street half say something like "District to Wimbledon, Circle via Embankment, and Bakerloo" or whatever; and the ones for 15/16 say "H&C and Circle via King's Cross" or such).


8) Finally, I had to chuckle because also on the Victoria Line there are advertisements for Virgin Media phone and internet deals that state you to give them a call as soon as you're out of the tunnel - except that on the Victoria Line the trains are constantly in tunnel except for at the depot at Northumberland Park - where there are no passengers...
Hmm... bad choice of wording there :P Semi-ironically, today VM was announced as the operator of the new tube wi-fi system (if you're wondering what the point is, you're only going to be on the train for five minutes, remember that you can call or text any phone with Skype or another VoIP server).
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Are these not the services that terminate at Tower Gateway - hence 'City'. Just a hunch on that one.
Yes, as of the December 2011 timetable services from Wimbledon terminate at Tower Hill (why they choose to write that as City is beyond me)—formerly it was Ealing Broadway services that stopped short.
 
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ChristopherJ

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Dont these just shuttle between these stations all day long and not go off route to anywhere else? If not then it seems sill to show a route map if a train isnt going anywhere near there doesnt it?
How is Johnny Foreigner meant to know that C69/77 stock don't go to Upminster?

Probably just a blanket advertising for the whole tube system - would be costly to print up ones for each line. Also are you not out the 'tunnel' when you exit the station?
Probably just my personal way of viewing it. It's advertised on a train and that particular train doesn't ever come out of a tunnel with passengers onboard.

Are these not the services that terminate at Tower Gateway - hence 'City'. Just a hunch on that one.?
Would you expect to get onboard a train at Birmingham New Street going to "Capital" rather than to "London Euston"?
 
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Eagle

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How is Johnny Foreigner meant to know that C69/77 stock don't go to Upminster?
Because the screens on the train and the platform say "Edgware Road". Simple. Anyone who's incapable of determining whether the destination of their train matches the branch they want to be on is clearly not cut out for the world of rapid transport.

(Johnny likely as not won't even notice the difference between C and D stock anyway, so will be relying on the destination board and platform screens.)
 

bb21

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1) Since when has it became acceptable for station staff to use personal electronic toys when on duty? At Richmond tonight the South West Trains station staff were standing at the gateline, in full uniform, in front of *open* ticket barriers and playing a Nintendo DS in the middle of the public concourse. Talk about justifying your job...
It isn't, however why not be constructive and bring the matter to LU's attention?

2) Not related to the Railway per se but to the operators of Terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport - the tube maps at the terminal expired years ago, they still show the East London Line Extension as under construction. It opened in 2010! Not a very good or helpful example to newbie passengers whom have just arrived in the country and are not associated with the network.
As above. Why not bring this to BAA's attention?

3) In regards to the Heathrow Express, I have noticed that the Heathrow Central - Heathrow Terminal 4 shuttle, with a journey duration of just 3 minutes, is crewed by two drivers - one in each cab, along with a dedicated cleaner who just shuttles back and forth all day cleaning the train that in 3 minutes has no possibility of ever getting dirty. Talk about over utilisation! What's wrong with one driver just changing ends at each terminal?
There is a very short turnaround at Terminal 3. This way it saves the sole driver having to walk to the other end of the train so that there is a better chance of the train leaving on time.

4) Why do the internal saloon maps on C69/77 stock only show the WimbleWare branch of the District Line? It's not very user friendly and must be very confusing for a newbie passenger (yes - a passenger, not a customer, take note LUL...) who can become baffled that station maps that display the District line as a route between Upminster/Eailing Broadway/Richmond but the internal train maps only show the District Line as a shuttle service between Wimbledon - Edgware Road.
Because the route map only shows the routes the train might work on. C-stock only operates the Wimbleware branch of the District Line. In an ideal world, Circle, Hammersmith & City and Wimbleware will all have their own dedicated stock so that each train only shows one line, however we're not living in the ideal world and in the real world these three lines interwork, stock-wise.

Even better, like Eagle suggested above, Wimbleware could have its own separate identity (together with the Kenny O branch) from the rest of the District Line.

5) Why do the dot matrix destination displays at West Brompton (and I assume the rest of the Wimbledon branch stations, I haven't checked) show District Line services towards the east as "City via Victoria"? What's wrong with "Upminster via Victoria"? or "Barking via Victoria"? Again, more confusion for unassociated users, any newbie to the network would probably assume that "City" is a station somewhere along the route.
Yes, I agree with you on this point.

6) The Circle Line T-Cup service is a joke and whoever designed such an absurd timetable should be locked up and the key thrown away, any passengers with luggage traveling clockwise from Paddington (Circle) have to travel one stop to Edgware Road and haul their luggage up and across the staircase to the adjacent platforms for a connecting service towards the east, there are also no lifts at the station. Under the previous and genuine Circle Line service there was no need to change. I would imagine that LUL's intention is to have all airport passengers use the H&C platforms which are miles away from the mainline concourse that Heathrow Express service arrive. If it ain't broke, don't fix it...?
Apart from improving reliability, this also helped increase frequency on the Hammersmith branch.

A passenger with heavy luggage changing onto the Eastbound services at Edgware Road could always wait for a Wimbleware service, so that the change is cross-platform. There could probably be better information provision in this regard.

7) Since the modernization of the Victoria Line the new service has been nothing but awful. Last night I had to wait 8 minutes for a service to Walthamstow and even at midnight at almost every station my train was waiting for 2-3 mins to "regulate the service". Regulating the service past midnight? What a load of absolute Bow Locks. My understanding for the installation of ATO is to increase the service capacity and reliability but it seems to have the opposite effect on the Victoria Line because services are required to wait at stations because of being constantly early and ahead of schedule. Why can't a more intense service be operated so that journey times are shorted and the service is constantly moving and not waiting for time at every station? Apart from the new rolling stock the service itself has been sabotaged - it never operated like this prior to modernization.
I disagree. Why should the service be more frequent if there is not demand out there? If you waited 8 minutes for a train then I guess the one before turned around at Seven Sisters? You were just unlucky then in that case.

8) Finally, I had to chuckle because also on the Victoria Line there are advertisements for Virgin Media phone and internet deals that state you to give them a call as soon as you're out of the tunnel - except that on the Victoria Line the trains are constantly in tunnel except for at the depot at Northumberland Park - where there are no passengers...
I don't see the problem. You leave the tunnel as you leave the station.
 

Eagle

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Even better, like Eagle suggested above, Wimbleware could have its own separate identity (together with the Kenny O branch) from the rest of the District Line.
I made, a while back, a tube map in which all the lines were represented by just their initial letter, and with the following changes (representing current or proposed service patterns): Northern line split into line N (black) running from High Barnet to Kennington/Battersea and line S (violet) running from Edgware to Morden; the Wimbleware inc. Olympia split off as line K (lime green); the Metropolitan (line M) taken away from Aldgate and extended to Barking; and the redundant Circle and H&C lines merged to form new line H (yellow), with services alternating Hammersmith–Edgware Road (via Tower Hill) and Hammersmith–Aldgate.


[I also considered splitting line C into Ruislip–Epping and Ealing–Woodford (via Hainault) as all Central line services fit onto one or the other, but decided against it due to the long shared section. I also labelled the five DLR services as services A (Bank–Lewisham), E (Stratford–Canary Wharf/Lewisham), I (Tower Gateway–Beckton), O (Stratford–Beckton) and U (Bank–Woolwich) with peak-time only service Y (Stratford Intl–Woolwich).]
 
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Clip

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How is Johnny Foreigner meant to know that C69/77 stock don't go to Upminster? As has been said - it will show on the blind and destination board at the station. And it's 'Doesn't'

Probably just my personal way of viewing it. It's advertised on a train and that particular train doesn't ever come out of a tunnel with passengers onboard.probably - but virgin dont dictate where the ads go - they tell the marketers that they want ads on the tube and ISS will just change them all

Would you expect to get onboard a train at Birmingham New Street going to "Capital" rather than to "London Euston"?No,I wouldnt because that could be any of 3 capitals that you can get to by train. But on the tube things are different and the majority of the people who use this service will know what it means. Why have a line called Hammersmith and city if it carries on to Barking?

Whilst some of your points are valid I do feel that the majority are a bit petty in the grand scheme of things.
 

transmanche

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How is Johnny Foreigner meant to know that C69/77 stock don't go to Upminster?
Because when he looks at the map, he'll notice that it only says it includes the Wimbledon-Edgware Road section of the District line. And he'll also see clearly marked on the diagram the stations where he can change for 'Other District line destinations'.

Would you expect to get onboard a train at Birmingham New Street going to "Capital" rather than to "London Euston"?
(Well I have seen just 'Euston' at some stations in the past, with no indication that the terminus is actually in London.)

To be honest, it's no different from the T&W Metro where they show 'Newcastle via x' or 'The Coast via x' rather than their ultimate destination, until they get closer to it. Or elsewhere on the tube, such as the Piccadilly line at Heathrow, where they show 'Central London'.
 

tsr

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Because when he looks at the map, he'll notice that it only says it includes the Wimbledon-Edgware Road section of the District line. And he'll also see clearly marked on the diagram the stations where he can change for 'Other District line destinations'.

...

To be honest, it's no different from the T&W Metro where they show 'Newcastle via x' or 'The Coast via x' rather than their ultimate destination, until they get closer to it. Or elsewhere on the tube, such as the Piccadilly line at Heathrow, where they show 'Central London'.
To answer your first paragraph... I wonder how many confused non-English speakers would understand exactly what that meant. I'm just wondering what sort of statistic a researcher would get. It would be interesting to see.

And for the second paragraph I have quoted... I still think the displays on trains and stations should show the final destination. Perhaps trains heading into Central London (to use the OP situation) should say "[Destination] via Central London stations" or, where the train goes through a major interchange, perhaps "[Destination] via [Interchange] and other Central London stations". I don't think this is too much information, too hard to understand - even for non-English speakers - or too hard to fit onto a display which may be showing a lot of scrolling text anyway.
 

swt_passenger

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The problem with the District line PIS displays is mainly because it is still using ancient kit, with limited scope for different destinations, and also because the automatic transfer of train descriptions from the NR signalled section to the LU system is not capable of accurately desribing the final destinations. Services leave Wimbledon under the control of NR, under NR style alpha numeric train identifiers.

All will be fixed with the SSR signalling replacement due by 2018. There are similar issues on the H&C/Circle west of Paddington passing along information, which is why when you are waiting at Paddington the train infromation is useless...
 

Chris125

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I've come across exactly the same post on quite a few different forums now, according to someone on railchat its by a journalist whose done this kind of thing before.

Chris
 

ChristopherJ

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I've come across exactly the same post on quite a few different forums now, according to someone on railchat its by a journalist whose done this kind of thing before.

Chris
LMFAO, that's made my day. If I'm ever a journalist - I'll only be acting as one. :D

I'm sure the police will be around to arrest me and throw me in a pit with the News Corp gang in due course. ;)
 

telstarbox

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I made, a while back, a tube map in which all the lines were represented by just their initial letter, and with the following changes (representing current or proposed service patterns): Northern line split into line N (black) running from High Barnet to Kennington/Battersea and line S (violet) running from Edgware to Morden; the Wimbleware inc. Olympia split off as line K (lime green); the Metropolitan (line M) taken away from Aldgate and extended to Barking; and the redundant Circle and H&C lines merged to form new line H (yellow), with services alternating Hammersmith–Edgware Road (via Tower Hill) and Hammersmith–Aldgate.


[I also considered splitting line C into Ruislip–Epping and Ealing–Woodford (via Hainault) as all Central line services fit onto one or the other, but decided against it due to the long shared section. I also labelled the five DLR services as services A (Bank–Lewisham), E (Stratford–Canary Wharf/Lewisham), I (Tower Gateway–Beckton), O (Stratford–Beckton) and U (Bank–Woolwich) with peak-time only service Y (Stratford Intl–Woolwich).]
Sounds good, can we see it?
 

whhistle

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Would you expect to get onboard a train at Birmingham New Street going to "Capital" rather than to "London Euston"?
No, but that's the difference between the Underground Rapid Transit System and a Mainline Railway.

The majority of your points are just having a moan, no real depth to the questions. You should contact LU about them.

And WOW - you had to wait 8 mins for a train?!
Dude, try living somewhere rural where you get one tiny minibus every 2 hours.
 

Urban Gateline

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1) Since when has it became acceptable for station staff to use personal electronic toys when on duty? At Richmond tonight the South West Trains station staff were standing at the gateline, in full uniform, in front of *open* ticket barriers and playing a Nintendo DS in the middle of the public concourse. Talk about justifying your job...
A DS would not be appropriate, however some SWT staff are provided with Blackberries (The Smart-Phone, not the fruit!) as a means of improving communication and information. I certainly agree that staff shouldn't be playing games or otherwise entertaining themselves in front of passengers, although it's hard to know if the staff you saw were on duty, many of us commute home in our uniforms and sometimes stop off to speak with colleagues at other stations!

The fact that the barriers were open really has no significance on staff doing their job properly, as it is Gateline staff who work at the barriers, you may have seen RO2 Train dispatch staff...! I'm not sure what time you witnessed this, but naturally late at night and early morning the barriers may be open anyway at Richmond as they are not staffed 24h! There is also a minimum staffing rule, which would apply at a busy station like Richmond, so if there was only 1 Gateline staff there then they may have had to leave the barriers open and just do "customer service"!

I myself use an iPhone to get hold of train information at the Gateline as it is often more reliable than the departure screens and we don't have a PC with "TRUST" on it there! Also I don't see much wrong with checking the phone every so often so long as you don't lose concentration and still focus on the passengers. (Gateline is not a Safety critical role, it would be worse for Platform staff to be distracting themselves with electronic devices!)
 

DavyCrocket

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The problem with the District line PIS displays is mainly because it is still using ancient kit, with limited scope for different destinations, and also because the automatic transfer of train descriptions from the NR signalled section to the LU system is not capable of accurately desribing the final destinations. Services leave Wimbledon under the control of NR, under NR style alpha numeric train identifiers.

Sort of. The platform displays are actually controlled by the Hammersmith LU signalman via a computer known as WARS.
It can only show eastbound destinations as City, Edgware Road, High Street Kensington, Earl's Court and Parsons Green.

It is generally reliable and picks up data from the westbound trip. It assumes all trains are in timetable order unless edited otherwise.

All NR staff do is signal the trains and that is only when the Train Operators at Wimbledon operate the TRTS equipment.
 

150222

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1) It hasn't. Bring the matter to SWT's attention?

2) Just poor communication between LU and BAA.

3) For a good company image.

4) Agreed it would be confusing. Especially on the very rare occasions that they are used on Richmond/Ealing Broadway services.

However I think that the H&C line should be renamed the 'Kings Cross line' (or similar) and services should run from Upminster/Dagenham/Barking to Hammersmith and Aldgate to Wimbledon/Earls Court/Kenny O via Kings Cross.

5) West Brompton is hardley a major tourist hub is it?

6) It was broken. Reliability was appauling on the SubSurface lines (Circle, Met, District, H&C).

7)Don't know. Not my area of expertise.

8) Outside station?
 

telstarbox

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No, but that's the difference between the Underground Rapid Transit System and a Mainline Railway.

The majority of your points are just having a moan, no real depth to the questions. You should contact LU about them.

And WOW - you had to wait 8 mins for a train?!
Dude, try living somewhere rural where you get one tiny minibus every 2 hours.
Or 4 trains a day on the Mallaig branch.
 

ChristopherJ

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5) West Brompton is hardley a major tourist hub is it?
:shock: :shock: :shock:

You've obviously not noticed that big white building with shiny red neon lettering called the Earl's Court exhibition centre, host to some of the most prestigious acts, exhibitions and performances in history *and* the venue for the 2012 Summer Olympic indoor volleyball games. :roll:

Guess you're right, not a place anyone would want to visit.
 

150222

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:shock: :shock: :shock:

You've obviously not noticed that big white building with shiny red neon lettering called the Earl's Court exhibition centre, host to some of the most prestigious acts, exhibitions and performances in history *and* the venue for the 2012 Summer Olympic indoor volleyball games. :roll:

Guess you're right, not a place anyone would want to visit.
Well alright. Wouldn't most change at Earl's Court? I don't think many tourists would want to go from there to The City.
 
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