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adamskiodp

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Hi folks,

just a thought:

If Boris gets his way and TFL takes control of all London suburban services, including C2C and Chiltern Line to Aylesbury, how will he be accountable to residents outside Greater London? Will those of us in Essex and Buckinghamshire be able to vote in the London Mayoral elections?

Adam
 
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Pugwash

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Hi folks,

just a thought:

If Boris gets his way and TFL takes control of all London suburban services, including C2C and Chiltern Line to Aylesbury, how will he be accountable to residents outside Greater London? Will those of us in Essex and Buckinghamshire be able to vote in the London Mayoral elections?

Adam
Some residents of Essex already do - out to Harold wood' ish area in Essex for the GEML, for the rest of us - Our current rail providers are not accountable at the moment, so no change really.
 

Mojo

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Some residents of Essex already do - out to Harold wood' ish area in Essex for the GEML, for the rest of us - Our current rail providers are not accountable at the moment, so no change really.
No residents of Essex vote in the London Mayoral Elections. Harold Wood not in Essex, it is in the London Borough of Havering, part of Greater London.

With regards to your second point, this is exactly what I was thinking about the current arrangement. Current rail services are specified by the DfT, and local authorities can also have some say if they are willing to put forward the cash. If the Mayor of London was given widescale coverage outside of Greater London, more-so than its current small sections of operation in Essex, Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire then I would imagine local politicians would still want the DfT to specify absolute minimums as they do with the Tocs.
 

Chris125

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Geoff Hobbs from TfL gave a very good answer to this issue to the London Assembly a few months back - the whole thing is worth a read IMO but this is the relevant section.

Richard Tracey (AM):
I wonder if I could ask you about the small uproar out in the regions. I have in front of me the text of a story that was in This is Sussex reporting that the Tunbridge Wells and District Rail Travellers Association and also people in Sevenoaks were very worried that if TfL and the Mayor were to get greater control over the rail services then the rail services that were serving them out in Tunbridge Wells coming into London would be heavily skewed towards people who were within the Greater London boundary so the journeys would be longer because trains would be stopping.

Also that they would not have a vote in the election for the Mayor of London so there is a democratic deficit I think they called it. What do you have to say to those arguments? TfL, first of all, Geoff. What do you think about that?

Geoff Hobbs (Head of Strategy, London Rail, TfL):
First, in terms of taking away paths, we could not. There is nothing in this proposal that changes the rules on how scarce track access is governed. We have no say over track paths now. We will have no say over track paths in the future. This is absolutely no change and there is nothing to worry about from the people of Sussex, Sevenoaks or anywhere else on this account.

Even if we wanted the full panoply of regulation, everything from the Utilisation Strategy, which is the process by which scarce paths are divvied up in an at least half sensible way - much more than half sensible in my view - through to the Office of Rail Regulation (ORR), which would have the last say on these sorts of things. We would have absolutely no say either on the stopping patterns of longer distance trains. We have no say now and we would have no say in the future; nothing to worry about whatsoever.

The other point about the democratic deficit. Again, I would point out that this is not a new phenomenon and that the Underground has been running out to Essex, Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire since 1933 in its current form. Life goes on. At a less facile level I would point out also that there are two Board Members on the TfL Board whose job it is to look after the interests of out of boundary users of TfL services - of which there are many; not just railways but also buses, many of which go out of boundary.

Furthermore, it is readily possible to construct any kind of governance with neighbouring transport authorities such that any change that affects their train service to the stations beyond the boundary is consulted upon fully and the residents of Hertfordshire, Kent, Sussex or anywhere else have every opportunity to make their views felt, not only via the good offices of the out boundary TfL Board Members but directly to the planners suggesting any such change.


Chris
 

Requeststop

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Hi folks,

just a thought:

If Boris gets his way and TFL takes control of all London suburban services, including C2C and Chiltern Line to Aylesbury, how will he be accountable to residents outside Greater London? Will those of us in Essex and Buckinghamshire be able to vote in the London Mayoral elections?

Adam
Would the citizens of Essex Bucks etc want to vote in a mayoral election? I seem to recall that in all the places that had a referendum recently, the voters declined the chance to have mayors rule them with the exception being the citizens of the City of Bristol!

Will the future Mayor of Brissle have any say in Transport development, say opening the Portishead branch and making the Bristol loop from Avonmouth to Filton?
 
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Mojo

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Will the future Mayor of Brissle have any say in Transport development, say opening the Portishead branch and making the Bristol loop from Avonmouth to Filton?

The answer of course is partly yes, and partly no. Partly no, in that Portishead, and much of the Henbury loop are not actually in the City of Bristol (where the Mayor will be elected), but actually in North Somerset and South Gloucestershire respectively.

Partly yes, in that the Mayor will have considerable say in amongst the West of England Partnership and any new transport authority which may (or may not) be created in the coming years thanks to the recent Local Transport Act which allows the creation of new Integrated Transport Authorities. In the words of local MP Charlotte Leslie ''The stars are all aligned; Bristol's agreeing our City Deal, Great Western Franchise being finalised AND all surrounding local authorities and region's MPs speaking with one voice (which hasn't always happened!) Can't miss this opportunity...'' Charlotte took Justine Greening on the Severn Beach Line last Friday to show off the potential, and things are looking very promising.

The role the Mayor *will* play however is a strong supporter for Bristol which is something that has been lacking for years, and hopefully will bin the South Bristol Link and ghastly Bus Rapid Transit.
 

jon0844

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When I've heard TfL speak, it's clear they want more and more people to travel into London and to keep expanding the transport systems.

As such, I doubt they'd do anything to worsen services into town. What's more TfL would be more likely to want to encourage more off-peak travel into London (and being able to stay in London for an evening out) so I'd even hope to see improved daytime/weekend/night services too.

Maybe I'm being naive, but I really do think TfL would be a good thing for people in the suburbs.
 

stut

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...except for those wanting to head to places other than London, who are already badly served as it is.
 

Lad Brookes

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When I've heard TfL speak, it's clear they want more and more people to travel into London and to keep expanding the transport systems.

As such, I doubt they'd do anything to worsen services into town. What's more TfL would be more likely to want to encourage more off-peak travel into London (and being able to stay in London for an evening out) so I'd even hope to see improved daytime/weekend/night services too.

Maybe I'm being naive, but I really do think TfL would be a good thing for people in the suburbs.
Those of us who live on the outer edges of the Met Line would be somewhat sceptical about that.
 

adamskiodp

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Thanks all - interesting points.

Personally I wouldn't object to London Overground or the Metropolitan line running to Aylesbury (as it used to). As long as there was a fast/semi fast service to reduce journey times.

The Chiltern line to Aylesbury via Amersham seems to have been forgotten when they upgraded the Chiltern Mainline. I know it's probably because of running on LUL tracks from Amersham, but it would be nice to have one of those refurbished Loco hauled Mk 3 trains from Aylesbury to Marylebone/Paddington, maybe via High Wycombe if not Amersham :)

Adam
 

Tiny Tim

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Neither Network Rail or any of the TOCs are democratically accountable in any real sense. If TfL in it's existing form took over London's railways it would be unusually democratic.

As for people outside London voting in London Mayoral elections, that's just nonsense. I go to London regularly though I live in Wiltshire. Do I get half a vote? You have to draw boundaries somewhere, I think London is big enough already.
 

jopsuk

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If the talk is of including Bedwyn (for Paddigton) and Shoeburyness then I suppose Letchworth (GN) and Bishops Stortford (WA) wouldn't be ridiculous- 313s run to Letchworth and there's the Sotrtford-Stratford stopping service. What about other boundaries? On SWT, I'd suggest anywhere the 455s run to. Southern's a bit complex, given the Thameslink mega-franchise, and there would have to be careful negotiations to change that. Southeastern already defines a "Metro" group of services.
There's nothing beyond Watford that it would be sensible to add on the WCML.
On the Great Eastern, if the LTS is in, should the Southend Victoria line be too?
Best leaving the MML alone to Thameslink though
 
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