LNR (WMT) ticket office at Euston to close

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James H

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The London Northwestern ticket office at Euston is close.

From London TravelWatch

Passengers will still be able to use the other ticket office at Euston operated by Avanti West Coast to buy tickets and make enquiries (except for between 2300 and 2325 on a Saturday evening), or to use ticket vending machines located around the station. The closing date for comments is 29 March 2021 and these should be sent by email to [email protected].
 
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Lewlew

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Presumably this is for the ramp widening project?
I was wondering what they would do with the ticket office as if it remained in place then it wouldn't really create more space as the gate line would be the same size, just with two ramps leading down to it either side of the tube entrance.
 

Hadders

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I purchased a ticket at Euston LNR ticket office on Saturday and noticed this. Quite sad as I always found this ticket office quite efficient and quick at serving customers.

I think this closure will just leave Glasgow Central, Edinburgh, St Pancras and Stevenage as the only stations on the network with two ticket offices operated by different TOCs
 

maniacmartin

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I think London Bridge still has a small second ticket office run by GTR near the terminating platforms, unless that has closed?

I used to use it to get season ticket re-encodes because only the original issuing TOC is prepared to do that, and my home station at the time often had queues a the office in the morning, and was closed contrary to its supposed opening hours many evenings.
 

Bletchleyite

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I purchased a ticket at Euston LNR ticket office on Saturday and noticed this. Quite sad as I always found this ticket office quite efficient and quick at serving customers.

Yes, I've certainly found it useful - but it is rather in the way of the expanded ramp (both it and the queue).
 

Hadders

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Yes, I've certainly found it useful - but it is rather in the way of the expanded ramp (both it and the queue).
Nothing to stop them relocating it elsewhere within the station though (not that they will).

Are they required to consult on the closure? If so I wonder if they have.....
 

Bletchleyite

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Nothing to stop them relocating it elsewhere within the station though (not that they will).

True, but the "selling point" of it was it being down by P8-11. I can't really think where else it would go to have that benefit over just using the main Avanti-operated one.

Are they required to consult on the closure? If so I wonder if they have.....

Er, isn't that linked to on the first post of the thread?
 

Starmill

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I've heard on the grapevine that this has caused some consternation as there would no longer be an excess fares point at the ticket gates, rendering them rather pointless for arriving passengers. It will be interesting to see what solution they go for.
 

Bletchleyite

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I've heard on the grapevine that this has caused some consternation as there would no longer be an excess fares point at the ticket gates, rendering them rather pointless for arriving passengers. It will be interesting to see what solution they go for.

Surely a member of gateline staff with a portable ticket machine would be able to handle that, as is the case in a good many other stations anyway?
 

Starmill

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Surely a member of gateline staff with a portable ticket machine would be able to handle that, as is the case in a good many other stations anyway?
Are any LNR gate staff trained to sell tickets? I've never seen them do it anywhere else.
 

Bletchleyite

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Are any LNR gate staff trained to sell tickets? I've never seen them do it anywhere else.

I'm fairly sure the actual RPIs/employed gateline staff are, though I might be wrong. The contract security guards are not trained in any revenue matter and are purely a deterrent. I can't see that it'd be that difficult to revenue-train the employed gateline staff, though, or indeed to redeploy the present booking office staff onto the gateline.
 

Starmill

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I'm fairly sure the actual RPIs/employed gateline staff are, though I might be wrong. The contract security guards are not trained in any revenue matter and are purely a deterrent. I can't see that it'd be that difficult to revenue-train the employed gateline staff, though, or indeed to redeploy the present booking office staff onto the gateline.
I would say that that's actually exactly the kind of thing that is indeed so difficult as to be enormously expensive or almost impossible in the railway industry. I imagine that, in fact, that's the reason it's actually been identified as an issue.
 

Hadders

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Er, isn't that linked to on the first post of the thread?
My bad, I should've read the first post properly.

Anyway, I'm sure the notice at the ticket office I saw said it was closing on 26th March, the consultation doesn't finish until 29th March. I also don't remember the notice at the ticket office saying there was a consultation into the closure, it said it was closing. Nothing quite like pre-empting the outcome of the consultation, there is a legal process to follow and WMT appear to be riding roughshod over it. If I am travelling through Euston later this week I will go and check out the exact position.

I've heard on the grapevine that this has caused some consternation as there would no longer be an excess fares point at the ticket gates, rendering them rather pointless for arriving passengers. It will be interesting to see what solution they go for.
The ticket office does double up as an excess fares window and it is quite possible that passengers will arrive on trains needing to purchase tickets. Not all tickets on the south WCML are manned and although I think they all have ticket machines we know these don't always sell the full range of tickets. If tickets can't be sold at the gate line then this could cause problems.
 

CyrusWuff

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I stand for correction, but the wording in the Ticketing and Settlement Agreement suggests that only the Lead Operator at a given station (in this case that would be Avanti) has to go through the consultation process to make major changes.

Though if a consultation does occur, it's essentially only an objection from another TOC, London Travelwatch or the DfT or ORR that can block it (or at least force a referral to Rail Settlement Plan).
 

Hadders

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I stand for correction, but the wording in the Ticketing and Settlement Agreement suggests that only the Lead Operator at a given station (in this case that would be Avanti) has to go through the consultation process to make major changes.

Though if a consultation does occur, it's essentially only an objection from another TOC, London Travelwatch or the DfT or ORR that can block it (or at least force a referral to Rail Settlement Plan).
I did wonder that but if that is the case why have London Travelwatch invited comments from the public on their website.
 

Bletchleyite

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I don’t think it’s anything to do with that, the company wants shot of it. It’s quite sad what they’re doing and how they’re going about it.

The above consultation mentions the reason as being HS2 preparatory work, which is what the ramp widening is for (it enables more frequent use of the suburban platforms without excess overcrowding).

I think the conspiracy theorism is a bit misplaced.
 

Watershed

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The above consultation mentions the reason as being HS2 preparatory work, which is what the ramp widening is for (it enables more frequent use of the suburban platforms without excess overcrowding).

I think the conspiracy theorism is a bit misplaced.
It sounds like a convenient excuse for closing an unremunerative ticket office.
 

Hadders

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The above consultation mentions the reason as being HS2 preparatory work, which is what the ramp widening is for (it enables more frequent use of the suburban platforms without excess overcrowding).

I think the conspiracy theorism is a bit misplaced.
They could relocate it elsewhere within the station.

It sounds like a convenient excuse for closing an unremunerative ticket office.
I agree and personally I don't have a major objection to it closing (it's always seemed a bit of an anomaly). However a procedure exists for closing a regulated ticket office and it would seem that this may not be being followed.
 

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However a procedure exists for closing a regulated ticket office and it would seem that this may not be being followed.
Presumably the ORR could object to the closure because the correct procedure has not been followed? Or more likely decide, at some future point post closure, that a ticking off is in order together with a paltry fine...
 

Hadders

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What's the point? There's already the huge Avanti ticket office.
As I said upthread, I don’t personally object to it closing but what isn’t right is announcing the closure before the consultation has even concluded. I don’t even think details of the consultation have been posted at the ticket office, just a poster saying it’s closing.

Presumably the ORR could object to the closure because the correct procedure has not been followed? Or more likely decide, at some future point post closure, that a ticking off is in order together with a paltry fine...
The procedure exists for a reason and it should be followed. Recently TfL consulted on closing ticket offices at Overground stations and they were required to back track following the consultation.

I’m not suggesting that would happen in this case but the consultation process exists for a reason.
 

Bletchleyite

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They could relocate it elsewhere within the station.

Where would it be useful? The benefit of it is being by the platforms most LNR services go from, and on the way from the Tube to those platforms via the shortcut tunnel. It can't be there if the ramp is to be widened as it's in the way, so what's the point having it a few steps from the main Avanti one?
 

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The above consultation mentions the reason as being HS2 preparatory work, which is what the ramp widening is for (it enables more frequent use of the suburban platforms without excess overcrowding).

I think the conspiracy theorism is a bit misplaced.

It’s not a conspiracy theory - it will be a permanent closure.

If the company wanted it retained then a replacement would be sorted. Permanent closure has been on the cards for years now.
 

Bletchleyite

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It’s not a conspiracy theory - it will be a permanent closure.

The conspiracy theory is that it doesn't need to be closed but is being because it's a nuisance to the TOC and a convenient excuse to get rid.

The fact is that it is physically in the way of the ramp widening work (which IS very much needed) and thus at least needs to be moved, but if it was moved off the ramp would serve no useful purpose as a separate booking office because you'd just go to the Avanti one instead. It only serves its own useful purpose because it is located between the Tube "cut-through" and the suburban platforms. Anywhere else it wouldn't, but there's no room for it there, so it has no purpose.

Therefore closing it is the correct course of action. All that should be worried about (which is the Union's job) is to ensure the staff are properly redeployed rather than just laid off.

(FWIW I'm actually surprised the Tube "cut-through" isn't getting removed too - perhaps the main entrance can't cope)
 

Andrew1395

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The reinstatement of the ramp (or at least part of it) to 10 and 11 after 30 years is good news. It was NSE North who decided they needed their own Booking Office. It is useful for people coming out of the underground subway and excess fares. But with the general decline in the issuing of paper based tickets, (and that will accelerate), a few machines and staff with mobile retailing machines should more than suffice.
 

RJ

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The conspiracy theory is that it doesn't need to be closed but is being because it's a nuisance to the TOC and a convenient excuse to get rid.

Permanent closure has been talked about for years. The booking office staff were asked if they'd take redundancy in an exercise a few years ago.
 
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