East Coast franchise discussion (Previously: Rumour VT/Stagecoach to win)

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by aformeruser, 5 Nov 2014.

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  1. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    It's interesting that the DB-style Bistrowagen concept was never tried. Serve basic but decent quality foodservice type (i.e. microwaved or toaster) stuff on proper plates etc. Might even bring more custom. Meanwhile incorporating a standing bar area a la ICE would have quite a number of people standing voluntarily and enjoying it, rather than annoyed crammed into the vestibule.

    The Travelling Chef is I suppose similar, and I guess fGW have said it wasn't successful, but it isn't *quite* the same. In particular there's no sit-down eating area - it's take away only.

    Neil
     
  2. Tetchytyke

    Tetchytyke Established Member

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    GNER/NXEC did at-seat dining in First Class. It was nice enough but it was pretty pricey too, you were looking at over a tenner for a burger and potato wedges. The burger and chips were alright I suppose, but at a tenner they needed to be.

    I suppose the problem with a sit-down cafe area is that people will stay there for the whole journey if they don't have a reservation. And a standing cafe area just takes up room that could be used for seats.
     
  3. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Anecdotal evidence from people who used to use the buffet areas on Southern EMUs is that in the latter case people will stand in a standing bar area at a far higher density than they will sit in a seating area - so this objection isn't really a valid one.

    Neil
     
  4. B&W

    B&W Member

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    from Horsham the standing areas of the BIGs were crammed in the morning and passing through was nigh on impossible, anybody trying to do so ran the gauntlet of caustic comment from regulars. These trains were very popular, even from Barnham/Arundel you sometimes did not get your Buttered Toast and Coffee till approaching Horsham as there were quite a few folks who walked through after Barnham. Still you passed the time of day with Patrick Moore, Colin Cowdrey etc.

    Again in the Evening the Buffet would be rammed from 10mins before departure till after after Dorking. I used wait to get my second G&T after Horsham when it calmed down and I would then walk through the 12 coach train to sit in appropriate part of the train for my stations exit.

    A long gone era when trains were comfortable and worth travelling by, not many times you were over 10mins late.

    Brian
     
  5. ChiefPlanner

    ChiefPlanner Established Member

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    The famous (or infamous) "W" club from Waterloo - a drink taken at Wimbledon , Weybridge, West Byfleet , Woking etc. towards Southampton.....

    Have I missed anywhere ...?
     
  6. 3141

    3141 Established Member

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    Winchfield, Worting Junction, Winchester.
     
  7. Iskra

    Iskra Established Member

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    Yes, but only slightly and the prices are still 'reasonable'- at M&S at least (I haven't come across many Waitrose's near stations up North- saw one tonight for the first time actually on the Tyne Valley line.)

    I used to work for M&S on a motorway and the prices were half the price of anywhere else on site, so I think they're quite generous with their pricing.
     
  8. Peter Mugridge

    Peter Mugridge Established Member

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    Walton...
     
  9. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    There are fewer Waitroses up north generally, particularly in Booths territory. This is no coincidence - Edwin Booth is said to get on with the John Lewis Partnership very well (they even share a lot of the supply chain), so there is unlikely to be head to head competition between the two.

    FWIW I think Booths is better than Waitrose anyway :)

    Neil
     
  10. Chrism20

    Chrism20 Established Member

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    Definitely! They do a mean roast beef barm at the hot food counter and they have one of the most interesting arrays of cakes I've seen on the high street in years.
     
  11. Iskra

    Iskra Established Member

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    Ah, I wondered why Booths hadn't spread further- I thought they were missing a trick and feared Waitrose would get into a lot of locations first.

    Booths is much better than Waitrose, it's one of the few things I miss about living in the North West.
     
  12. Suraggu

    Suraggu Member

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    Today was the pencilled date for the announcement of the winner of the ICEC franchise, and the announcement has not happened, as I broke a week or so ago.

    Apparently DfT still talking to all 3 bidders....
     
  13. westv

    westv Established Member

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    Maybe they'll decide to keep it as it is and EC will do quadruple points for 6 months in celebration. :D
     
  14. snail

    snail Established Member

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    And the best selection of beer of any supermarket chain. :D.

    Interestingly (and very off topic) I think the most northerly Waitrose in the NW is in Preston, home of Booths.
     
  15. Chrism20

    Chrism20 Established Member

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    Yup the next one North on the west coast will be the one at Gretna Services on the M74 I think which is of course SW Scotland.
     
    Last edited: 18 Nov 2014
  16. adrock1976

    adrock1976 Established Member

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    There is a Waitrose further north than Gretna. There is a Waitrose supermarket at the top end of Byres Road in Glasgow, just across from the former Botanic Gardens station on the Glasgow Central Railway.

    In peace

    Adam
     
  17. aformeruser

    aformeruser Veteran Member

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    Many of Booths' suppliers are North West based, so in the North West they have a selling point over Waitrose (higher proportion of local produce) but to expand further they need to find new suppliers to retain that selling point.
     
  18. ainsworth74

    ainsworth74 Forum Staff Staff Member Global Moderator

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    Am I the only one sat her wondering what Waitrose and Booths has to do with the East Coast franchise...
     
  19. aformeruser

    aformeruser Veteran Member

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    Waitrose have expanded in the Booths territory over recent years by a combination of:
    * Acquiring sites that were not previously supermarkets
    * Buying some ex-Safeway stores off Morrisons
    * Buying some ex-KwikSave (Somerfield) stores off Co-op
    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    Waitrose do complimentary take away coffees which can be taken on an East Coast service, Booths do complimentary coffees but they need to be consumed in their cafes ;)
     
    Last edited: 19 Nov 2014
  20. Ground Frame

    Ground Frame Member

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    Nope!
     
  21. GNER 373

    GNER 373 Member

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    Definitely not. Unless Boots or Waitrose are the new EC franchise bidders :D
     
  22. ainsworth74

    ainsworth74 Forum Staff Staff Member Global Moderator

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    In that case, as much as I appreciate jcollins robust defence of this diversion ;))), can I suggest we get back on topic and leave Waitrose and Booths to another thread?

    Many thanks :)
     
  23. aformeruser

    aformeruser Veteran Member

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    Now you've brought another retailer in to the thread!

    Not sure if it's been mentioned that Labour have confirmed the East Coast franchise will not be returned to state ownership if it win's the next election but will allow public sector companies to bid to run rail franchises when they come up for renewal, with Tim O'Toole from First Group being unhappy: http://www.theguardian.com/business/2014/nov/07/firstgroup-labour-urge-to-control-transport
     
  24. Suraggu

    Suraggu Member

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    Still no indication of an announcement, but the date of 17/11/14 has firmly gone out of the window.
     
  25. Geezertronic

    Geezertronic Established Member

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    What would cause a delay though? Or was the 17th a tentative date anyway?
     
  26. PG

    PG Member

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    DaFT getting their sums wrong?... again <D
     
  27. aylesbury

    aylesbury On Moderation

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    A thought on the livery for the new EC franchise why not paint the class 800,s in LNER apple green this would reflect the history of the route.Also the stations could use the colour on seats etc providing a welcome to passengers .I would not expect staff to wear green uniforms maybe shirts and ties but black jackets and trousers would look smart.But probably this wont happen and we will have another bland livery foist upon us any views on the idea?
     
  28. LNW-GW Joint

    LNW-GW Joint Veteran Member

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    Plenty of reasons.
    Contracts have to be agreed and signed by the winner, before DfT makes an announcement.
    There will be several billion at stake, and undoubtedly the Treasury will be involved.
    They can't afford to mess this one up.
     
  29. Robertj21a

    Robertj21a Established Member

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    Well if they *do* mess this one up (and it doesn't go to Stagecoach/Virgin) you can be pretty certain that Messrs Souter/Branson will be quick to, again, highlight where the error lies !!
     
  30. aformeruser

    aformeruser Veteran Member

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    But what if they get it wrong by awarding it to Stagecoach/Virgin?
     
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