I couldn't agree more with you. I am passionately for having a guard on every train, however too many guards really do not help themselves. It is these guards who are poor, lazy who also tend to be the most militant ie finding any reason not to work a train. The thing is if the company tried to clamp down on the poor standards, the RMT would cry foul. I imagine in the run up to the franchise there were 'secret' passengers from first/mtr assessing the onboard service, and wondering if the company/passengers get value for money out of the guards. How hard is it for example, to make a good announcement that everyone can understand?!?I'm Traincrew, I agree with every single thing in this post. I have worked with some fantastic Guards who do their job properly, are compassionate and caring towards our passengers, are reliable and helpful to me as a Driver for operational assistance, it is a joy to work with these Guards.
On the other side of the coin there are some bad Guards out there who really let their decent colleagues down and to be quite frank, I wish these Guards were dealt with much more thoroughly by management. Complete disdain towards passengers, no effort to maintain their operational knowledge or assist the Driver in operational matters. These Guards are most commonly found sat in the back cab playing on their phone or in the mess room loudly stating their views that they are grossly underpaid. Those Guards, I wish they would leave the railway because they are of little/no help to me or the travelling public and to be honest, I think they have partly contributed to the mess we are in now.
Please do not take this post as me knocking the Guards grade, I actually think the bad minority do a disservice to proper, professional Guards and it's why they anger me so much.
A decent Guard is needed on all passenger trains, in an ideal world they would be replacing the crap ones.