Longest Railway Commute

Astro_Orbiter

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Hi all, most drivers I know live within about 45 mins to an hour of the depot (not in a big city), and either live along the line of route or drive in by car. There's a few people who live what seems like ages away, around 50 or 60 miles each way by car, but regularly drive in and don't seem bothered.
What are some of the longest commutes you've heard of for shift working railway staff?
Some of the central London TOC depots must have people coming in from some very far flung provinces I'd expect.
 
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LowLevel

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I know a chap who commutes every day from Boston in Lincolnshire to London to work on the Underground.
 

4F89

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Mine is an hour bang on the money. I know one driver who works in Crewe and lives in Llandudno.
 

Tube driver

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I know a chap who commutes every day from Boston in Lincolnshire to London to work on the Underground.
Knew of a bloke who lived on the Isle of Wight and commuted in. Quite a few live on the South coast and places towards to Midlands and make it in everyday.

it helps we have ‘mafias’ where we can get rid of the extreme end shifts and make it possible to live near enough where you want.

My own commute is just over an hour door to door.
 

djack123son

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Rumour has it there is a driver that flies in every week from Spain and bunks whilst he has a run of shifts..
 
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Rumour has it there is a driver that flies in every week from Spain and bunks whilst he has a run of shifts..
There’s been a number of signallers who live in France and do the same thing.
In terms of daily commute I did hear tell of some foolhardy soul going from Poole to Waterloo every shift but I think that’s in the past. I’ve also heard of people going to Cardiff every day from deep in West/Mid Wales
 
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steamybrian

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When I worked for BR in Croydon there was someone who lived in Bourne, Lincolnshire . He drove to Peterborough where he started his rail journey.
When in London Waterloo offices someone commuted from Bristol Parkway.
 

Lewlew

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Knew of a bloke who lived on the Isle of Wight and commuted in. Quite a few live on the South coast and places towards to Midlands and make it in everyday.

it helps we have ‘mafias’ where we can get rid of the extreme end shifts and make it possible to live near enough where you want.

My own commute is just over an hour door to door.
We have someone that lives in Manchester. The mafia gives him permanent 9-5s.

I live about 45 miles away which takes about an hour to drive in. It takes some drivers living in London longer than that to get in from some areas.

The train takes an average of 1h 20m.
 

LowLevel

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Knew of a bloke who lived on the Isle of Wight and commuted in. Quite a few live on the South coast and places towards to Midlands and make it in everyday.

it helps we have ‘mafias’ where we can get rid of the extreme end shifts and make it possible to live near enough where you want.

My own commute is just over an hour door to door.

This chap is a Pway supervisor so he does permanent nights - hell of a mission with a long train journey at either end of a shift! I believe he plans to retire at the back end of this year though. Nice fella, the train guards all know him on the ECML and Skeg line and to keep an eye out and wake him up if he nods off :lol:
 

387star

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Hi all, most drivers I know live within about 45 mins to an hour of the depot (not in a big city), and either live along the line of route or drive in by car. There's a few people who live what seems like ages away, around 50 or 60 miles each way by car, but regularly drive in and don't seem bothered.
What are some of the longest commutes you've heard of for shift working railway staff?
Some of the central London TOC depots must have people coming in from some very far flung provinces I'd expect.
I did Chichester to Three Bridges and later Horsham when driving for TL but got staff taxies
A few based that way live in Barnham or Bognor.
Living in Central London is a nightmare! I know many at the now closed Blackfriars commuted from north of Bedford and Ramsgate etc
 

T-Karmel

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My own commute is about an hour, it was for most of the time that I work in railway, occasionally dropping down to half an hour. Before that I commuted for 1,5h each way across entire London combining trains with LUL inbetween.

Currently I've got a colleague whose commute is about 1,5h each way with public transport and he has done it for last 31 years.

There's someone in Waterloo commuting from Portsmouth on the train. We'll, direct at least :lol:

Also heard of a guy working at Heathrow travelling from Peterborough - for an early shift he was coming on a last train day before. Never met him.

And I worked with a girl at Heathrow and she was living in... Luton. I find it quite ironic.
 

Gloster

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In the mid-1980s there was a guard at Paddington who lived in Milton Keynes. There was also supposed to be a member of Paddington Booking Office staff who lived in Taunton and often used to come in or go home on the sleepers.
 

TheEdge

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My commute is 7 minutes.

I know we used to have a conductor who commuted from Cambridge to Norwich.
 

Doctor Fegg

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Longest daily commute I've ever observed was a Cotswold Line commuter who did Worcester-London every day (2hr 15 each way). He would settle into the single seat at the back of HST carriage A (the quiet carriage) and gently snore all the way to Paddington.
 

iwasyoungonce

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Sorry I'm a little tired after my 11hr day shift followed by the 1 hour commute home, silly me.
 

185143

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I've been sat in First Class on the 21:49 Euston-Crewe in the vicinity of a person in London Overground uniform who alighted at Rugby on at least two occasions. That's about an hour by train.
 

OliverH68

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I'm fairly certain there was an LU member of staff who commuted in on the Chilterns. Think there were 2 people from Bicester or further north that were in uniform.
 

Horizon22

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I knew a few (not drivers) that were around a 90 min commute. Worked at Victoria but lived along the Kent Coast in Faversham or even further along in Whistable, although I think they moved soon after.
Does fatigue from long journies affect people's ability to work safely?

It can indeed. Especially 12 hour shifts (many signal boxes) with a significant commute either side makes it more like a 14 hour day and that is draining. As fatigue is becoming an increasing concern on the railway, this is the reason why most new roles have the hard 60-minute rule.
 
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My commute is about 2 hours each way, wish it was shorter!

There's a lot of staff on LU who do live quite far out and travel a surprisingly long way. I know some part timers who travel in from North Wales for the few shifts a week
What is this "mafia"?
It's an arrangement between the drivers at a depot where they swap shifts around in a certain way so everyone more or less ends up with the shifts that suit them
 

whoosh

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What is this "mafia"?

It's a shift swapping syndicate that tube drivers can belong to. Sometimes there's more than one syndicate at a depot.
The person or persons running the syndicate try and take all the shift requests that people want, so someone might get only really early mornings, someone else might get early afternoons, and someone else might get 9-5 kind of hours. Each of them will get the shifts they want as others in the syndicate don't want those hours.

Big depots, such as Arnos Grove on the Piccadilly line, have so many drivers and duties, that the work has been able to be put into different rotas containing dead early earlies, earlies, mid morning, early afternoons, lates, dead lates, and a mixed rota.
There may still be a mafia at depots like this though, for people to swap rest days or leave.
 
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joshuan542

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I was a 2.5 hr each way from the south coast to work for Thameslink on TL North, now I’m local with Southern and my commute is 3 minutes
 

_toommm_

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I’m about 2.5hr in the morning, and 3hr in the evening.

During the pandemic when I was redeployed to the ‘essential’ part of the business, I was 4hr each way.
 

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