London not Underground

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by MartinD, 2 Jun 2015.

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  1. MartinD

    MartinD New Member

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    I have a fare problem that is very similar to a three-year old thread from 2012: I live between Catford, Catford Bridge, Crofton Park and Honor Oak Park stations, and commute to London Terminals - i.e. Catford to Blackfriars, or Catford Bridge to Cannon Street, or Honor Oak Park (HPA) to Cannon Street changing at London Bridge.

    In the old thread, somebody advised that a "Bellingham London - Crystal Palace route London Not Underground" ticket would work for all of these routes (Crystal Palace being a more flexible replacement for HOP or Forest Hill for the same price).

    So I got myself a similar "Catford Stations - Crystal Palace London Not Underground" season ticket - at £1000 it is a lot cheaper than the full £1500 London Zone 1-3 travelcard I had before. It works at all southern London Terminals I've tried so far - London Bridge, Cannon Street, Blackfriars, Charing Cross - but it did not work at HPA. I could fast-talk the Revenue Protection squad guys there into letting me out, but the Overground lady at the counter told me that my ticket is not even valid going into the London Terminals, and especially not to HPA (this sounds wrong to me given that it clearly does work at London Terminals).

    How come the ticket combo doesn't work anymore? Routing change? Would it work if I had the station staff change my season ticket to "Catford Stations - HPA London Not Underground"?
     
    Last edited: 2 Jun 2015
  2. yorkie

    yorkie Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    It's rare to find someone who is knowledgeable about ticketing at London Overground, so I'd take what they say with a pinch of salt. Their lack of knowledge is legendary and will only spread as they take over more lines.

    See Intermediate stations and season tickets for an example of a forum member who had numerous run-ins with LO staff. I will alert him to this thread.

    I can bring up itineraries on booking sites, so the route is valid according to the booking engines.
    Ticket barriers do not interpret the routeing guide.
     
  3. maniacmartin

    maniacmartin Established Member Senior Fares Advisor

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    HOP is the code for Hope Derbyshire. I presume you actually mean Honor Oak Park [HPA]

    Catford Stations - Crystal Palace
    Route: London Not Underground

    Crystal Palace is a Routeing Point

    Catford has Routeing Points: Nunhead and Shortlands
    of which Nunhead is the Appropriate Routeing Point.
    Nunhead to Crystal Palace has maps FT (page 1387)

    Catford Bridge has Routeing Points: Beckenham Junction and Lewisham
    of which Lewisham is the Appropriate Routeing Point.
    Lewisham to Crystal Palace has maps LONDON (page 1102).
    Lewisham to London Group has maps BR VL (page 1103)
    London Group to Crystal Palace has maps BR+EL FC FT (page 1154)

    LONDON TERMINALS:
    This is clearly valid at Victoria, Waterloo, Waterloo East, London Bridge by virtue of being mapped routes in the National Routeing Guide.

    I am going to take the conservative view that the route must not have a gap between London Terminals, as its a bit of a grey area. If your interpretation is different, then Charing Cross, Blackfriars, Cannon Street and City Thameslink would also be mapped, but using the ticket at these stations is asking for trouble should you meet an RPI, even if they do operate the gatelines.

    HONOR OAK PARK:
    Valid as per map BR+EL above. It would be ludicrous if London Group to Crystal Palace wasnt valid via Honor Oak Park anyway.

    Ticket barrier acceptance does not determine validity! We can only speculate as to which tickets would open gates at various stations.

    * * *

    I have had numerous incidents with London Overground making up rules as they go along, most of which I have not discussed on this forum. Forget about asking for training or staff briefings. This will be a waste of time resulting in false promises.

    I would advise writing to them demanding a letter on their letterheaded paper stating that your ticket is valid to start and finish short at HPA due to it being a mapped route for your ticket. I got one of these in the past and it was invaluable, except with the sole member of staff that refused to read it. If saves you having to get into disputes with staff as to whether the NRCoC applied and whatnot which is a waste of time, even if you are in the right
     
    Last edited: 2 Jun 2015
  4. MartinD

    MartinD New Member

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    Thanks to both of you! I'll edit HOP to HPA above, my mistake.

    Given the barriers don't interpret the routing guide correctly, I might have to ask to have my ticket changed to terminate at HPA - I'd rather pay for my occasional trips to Crystal Palace and Sydenham than to have twice-weekly arguments with station staff at HPA (even if I managed to get confirmation in writing from ATOS or SouthEastern or TfL) ...

    On exiting at Cannon Street/Blackfriars - manicmartin, just out of curiosity, if I take the less conservative interpretation that walking between Terminals is allowed, would a valid route be Crystal Palace to Cannon street via HPA, New Cross Gate and London Bridge, then walk to Blackfriars and take the Thameslink to Catford via Elephant&Castle? That would not include any doubling back.
     
    Last edited: 2 Jun 2015
  5. maniacmartin

    maniacmartin Established Member Senior Fares Advisor

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    Here is what the Routeing Guide says:

    I don't think the parts have to meet at the same London Terminal, especially as there are TRANSFERs between all the terminals in the Atoc station links data. That said, I stand by my advice to not rely on this, as the wording is not as concise as it could be
     
  6. swt_passenger

    swt_passenger Veteran Member

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    To be exact, barriers don't even attempt to interpret the routing guide at all. They just have a look up table of origins and destinations that are considered valid.
     
  7. yorkie

    yorkie Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    Correction: barriers don't interpret the Routeing Guide at all.;)
    On the contrary. Complain to LO. Refer the matter to Transport Focus.

    You should report breaches of your consumer rights to the ORR, and breaches of franchise obligations to accept tickets to the DfT.

    Because most people give in to London Overground, nothing is done, and they are able to continue to lie to people and get away with it.
    The route is via London but not including the Underground.

    My interpretation of that is all the permitted routes via London are valid, but you may not take London Underground.

    Some people disagree with me, and we will never get 100% consensus on this matter. If the matter went to court, I would not like to say what interpretation would be ruled as the correct one!
     
  8. furlong

    furlong Established Member

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    Indeed. The terminology "NOT UNDERGROUND" is deceptively simple, but when you try to analyse the contractual basis for it you struggle to find a coherent interpretation and realise that in some cases if travel was refused on the underground that might constitute a breach of contract...
     
  9. kieron

    kieron Established Member

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    You wouldn't need to pay extra for those journeys even if you changed your ticket, as the new ticket would be valid via Crystal Palace anyway. The top entry on this list gives one example* (at the time of writing). You may need to delete any nationalrail.co.uk cookies you have before it will load properly.

    This being a valid route doesn't just mean that you can go from Catford Bridge to Honor Oak Park using it, but also that you can go from Honor Oak Park to Crystal Palace that way with your ticket, and finish your journey there.

    If you have a copy of a journey itinerary to hand when you travel (for instance, if you select the details tab from the above link, show all of the calling points and print it out), it should help with sceptical barrier staff.

    * The route is Catford Bridge-Clock House, Kent House-Victoria, Victoria-Streatham Hill-Crystal Palace-Honor Oak Park. I don't know why it is a valid route, but I accept that it is.
     
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