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Discussion in 'Railway History & Nostalgia' started by infoman, 22 Dec 2016.
Question as in the header,thanks in advance.
I seem to recall BR running trains on Boxing Day up to around 1977 or 1978, but that's just off the top of my head.
Certainly, little or nothing ran on Boxing Day in the 1980's in England & Wales, though there were services in & around Glasgow (as the Bank Holiday is after New Year in Scotland).
BR withdrew Boxing Days trains in England and Wales in 1975.
Account of short Parliamentary debate at the time.
As Polarbear says, BR did try them out again once or twice after that but decided it wasn't worth the costs involved set against revenue earned.
Boxing Day services were back in 1977 when Boxing Day fell on a Monday. They disappeared again in 1980 when as in 1975 Boxing Day was on a Friday. They didn't reappear after that until 1988 (Monday again) - but only to a limited extent.
The removal in 1975 was strongly opposed by ASLEF.
Once they've gone, as they have, it's seems an impossible task to get them back to meet what seems to be popular demand for things such as shopping (now prevalent on Boxing Day) and sporting events.
Didn't the Harwich Boat Train still run Boxing Day into the early 1980s?
It would be more the TOC's stopping them coming back now, Network Rail wise it's almost a normal working day now, yes there are some boxes closed, but a majority are now open for Engineering Works / Engineering Trains / Security etc. Colchester PSB for example has not closed since about 1991, we used to up to that point.
Chiltern are running a half-hourly Marylebone to Oxford Parkway service on Boxing Day, and have been for the past few years. Obviously helps that Bicester Village is on the route, and Boxing Day happens to be when their sale starts
Nothing to stop TOCs bidding for boxing day services, whether they would get past a Sale of Access Rights (SOAR) panel is different. Xmas day and Boxing day are one of the few "free" days we get to do work without paying TOCs compensation.
A union opposing less work must be quite unusual!
Back in those days drivers were on very poor money. You never used to have problem covering Sunday work. In fact a list had to be kept to ensure they were fairly distributed.
Boxing day would have been enhanced rate of pay so drivers would have lost out.
Trains only ran to Bicester Village and Oxford Parkway for the first time last year - after the line opened for traffic after rebuilding.
On Boxing Day in 2013 and 2014, services ran Marylebone to Bicester North.
Yes, there are shoppers but what really helps the service to run is the fact that one signaller sat at Marylebone can oversee the entire service.
The piece I have seen from Ray Buckton indicated it might be good personally for his members, but a bad move for passengers who attended sporting occasions or visited relatives. No mention back then of shopping of course.
Very lightly loaded by all accounts - ex workmate worked a ticket office and took less than £2 ...
Attached is a photo from the '75/'76 timetable showing the various holidays during the validity of the timetable. No details but a rough guide.
Yet back in the 1960s, they even ran some relief trains on Boxing Day.
I think that one reason for the change is that workers started to get longer annual holiday allowances. At that time. some people only got 10 - 15 days holiday. Visit the family or friends over Christmas, but then they had to be back at work on 27 December, and that often required a rail journey on 26 December. I think that Boxing Day mornings had reduced services, but by late afternoon, some long distance trains could get very busy.
Very nasty accident on the 26th December 1963 involving 2 long distance trains at Coppenhall Junction , Crewe , - one being "The Midday Scot" with 18 killed - both trains very well loaded. Stop and proceed working which went very wrong.
There was no long break possible in those days as New Years' Day was not a holiday in England and Wales so back to work on the 27th.
1962 not 1963, but a very bad mistake by the driver of the Midday Scot. See:-