Luggage in Cycle Rack Spaces

leytongabriel

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Coming back from the West Country yesterday on a busy train, there were some large suitcases in the bike rack space and two cyclists with booked cycle spaces got on at Exeter. They asked train staff if they could move the luggage and were told 'No, where will I put it?'. So we had bikes in the lobbies and the owners had to keep getting up for the trolley and station stops. Seems odd as they had reserved places, especially as there are only two per set. What does the panel think?
 
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A design flaw of the IET's

Firstly do away with the sign "Storage space for luggage and bikes"

Secondly, lock shut the bike area until someone with a bike gets on
 

LowLevel

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On the one hand, why should one large and unwieldy item of property with big wheels (a bike) take priority over another unwieldy item of luggage with small wheels (a suitcase)?

On the other hand if reservations are made they should be honoured and staff should be proactive about maintaining the space.

Poorly specified trains since the 80s with crappy luggage space is of course the real problem.
 

Bletchleyite

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On the one hand, why should one large and unwieldy item of property with big wheels (a bike) take priority over another unwieldy item of luggage with small wheels (a suitcase)?

Because there are other places the latter can safely go, but not the former?

Edit: if we are talking IET, the overheads are massive and will take even the largest trolley cases. Them ending up in the bike spaces is just people being lazy. I wouldn't want my bag there anyway, you can't see it from your seat.
 
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Merseysider

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If I’d reserved the bike space, I’d be using the bike space, even if that meant moving someone else’s luggage.

If the owners are nearby, I’d imagine a polite request would suffice, and if the owners aren’t nearby, their luggage is getting moved to in front of the bike.

If I hadn’t reserved it then I’d accept that it is how it is & make do.
 

Grumpy Git

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They asked train staff if they could move the luggage and were told 'No, where will I put it?'.

Sound like a case of "not my job Guvnor", (well who's bloody job is it then)? Someone had taken the trouble to reserve spaces (which is to the benfit of everyone using that portion of the train) and these were not available due to a railway employee (or employees) failing to address the situation, it's crap.

I once had someone who wouldn't move out of my reserved seat on a Virgin Pendo years ago (I got the backwards facing one they had reserved), by the time we reached Euston I felt like throwing them out of the window.
 

Bill57p9

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As a cyclist I would be rather disappointed if I had reserved a space and received that level of response.
In terms of ethics, how is this different from refusing to vacate someone's reserved seat because others are available but are not as convenient?

Anyway, the underlying issue is the reduction in large luggage storage capacity since the days of guards vans. ScotRail's "active travel" 153s are commendable, however at the other end of the scale, they refurbished the I7C HSTs with little such space and left the old power car space unused which is disappointing, especially on the Highland Main Line.
 

Doctor Fegg

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They asked train staff if they could move the luggage and were told 'No, where will I put it?'.
Only half the "bike and bulk rooms" on IETs are available for bikes anyway, so "in the other one of these" is the obvious answer.

(Although I'd be tempted to reply "in the unused kitchen"...)
 

LowLevel

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Because there are other places the latter can safely go, but not the former?

Edit: if we are talking IET, the overheads are massive and will take even the largest trolley cases. Them ending up in the bike spaces is just people being lazy. I wouldn't want my bag there anyway, you can't see it from your seat.

It rather depends on how full of luggage the train is. If it isn't full, then I agree with you. If it is, then I wouldn't prioritise bikes over anything else, it would be first come first served (I experience this regularly with our 158s with their total lack of luggage space). From the West Country in summer I wouldn't be surprised if it was full.
 

Bletchleyite

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It rather depends on how full of luggage the train is. If it isn't full, then I agree with you. If it is, then I wouldn't prioritise bikes over anything else, it would be first come first served (I experience this regularly with our 158s with their total lack of luggage space). From the West Country in summer I wouldn't be surprised if it was full.

If the bikes aren't reserved I can see your point. If they are, then a way needs to be found to get them on board, as denying travel could mean they are stranded.

Edit: appears you said that above, sorry :)

This to be fair is why bike space doesn't work as multipurpose space - it needs to be dedicated to bikes. I agree with those saying it should be locked off if bikes are reserved so luggage can't be placed there. If there are no bikes reserved at a given point but there is a real luggage problem, then there needs to be a system for blocking last-minute bike reservations from that service, at which point it could be opened for luggage.
 
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74A

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How many coaches ? There are several compartments that can be used for either luggage or cycles. Did they check the other ones ?
 

Ashley Hill

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If the owners are nearby, I’d imagine a polite request would suffice,
And that opens another great debate with the owners. By the time they've argued the toss (even though they're in the wrong) the trains now late.
there needs to be a system for blocking last-minute bike reservations from that servic
These last minute bikes are often the problem. By the time they join halfway through the journey the bike space is already full of luggage as no reservations were shown when the luggage loaded.
lock shut the bike area until someone with a bike gets on
I like this idea but someone would need to be there at the right time to open it. Ok for pre-booked to a degree but not for those reserved whilst en-route.
 

Merseysider

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And that opens another great debate with the owners. By the time they've argued the toss (even though they're in the wrong) the trains now late.
Eh? You take the bike onto the train. Train departs. Sort out storing the bike. In that order... in any case, bike storage really needs to be labelled specifically as such, and never as space for luggage overflow - the same way disabled spaces on Voyagers specifically note that no luggage may be left there.
 

py_megapixel

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Eh? You take the bike onto the train. Train departs. Sort out storing the bike. In that order... in any case, bike storage really needs to be labelled specifically as such, and never as space for luggage overflow - the same way disabled spaces on Voyagers specifically note that no luggage may be left there.
Fat lot of good those little signs do when a peak time Manc-Brum is 4-car and absolutely rammed from end to end...
 

tspaul26

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They asked train staff if they could move the luggage and were told 'No, where will I put it?'.
Similar issue on Chiltern yesterday afternoon, although luggage on seats rather than in cycle spaces.

There are three places where such luggage can go:
  1. In the luggage racks;
  2. On the floor; and
  3. On the platform.
1. normally suffices, generally without even having to make the threat of 3.
 

Ashley Hill

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Also many cyclists I've spoken to, including myself, would happily pay a supplement for the carriage of their bike
When Regional Railways/Wales&West charged a flat fee of £3 for each bike there were no end of arguments. "I'm only going one stop!" was the usual cry and most flatly refused especially if their fare was less. Trouble was once they were on you couldn't get the beggers off.
Eh? You take the bike onto the train. Train departs
In an ideal world yes.But,many cyclists just stand there half on/half off waiting for you to deal with it.
 

Qwerty133

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If the bikes aren't reserved I can see your point. If they are, then a way needs to be found to get them on board, as denying travel could mean they are stranded.

Edit: appears you said that above, sorry :)

This to be fair is why bike space doesn't work as multipurpose space - it needs to be dedicated to bikes. I agree with those saying it should be locked off if bikes are reserved so luggage can't be placed there. If there are no bikes reserved at a given point but there is a real luggage problem, then there needs to be a system for blocking last-minute bike reservations from that service, at which point it could be opened for luggage.

The area needs to be dedicated to bikes at times when bikes are allowed on board but there is certainly an argument that bikes simply shouldn't be permitted on board on services for which the demand for luggage space will be predictably high so that the space can be used for luggage on such services (with the appropriate signage to make it clear it is overflow storage and bike reservations blocked off as soon as reservations are released and advance tickets go on sale). It simply wouldn't make sense on many routes to remove seats that are regualarly required from trains in order to make space for luggage capacity that is only needed on a handful of services a week (typically on Sunday evenings) if there is a perfectly good bike storage area that could be used by inconvieniencing no more than a handful of people a week.
 

Tube driver

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On GA’s new Stadler ‘intercity’ trains, I’m waiting for the arguments to start as the dedicated bike area shares the same area as where there are flip down seats. On a busy service when someone asks them to move their bikes………
 

BurtonM

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On GA’s new Stadler ‘intercity’ trains, I’m waiting for the arguments to start as the dedicated bike area shares the same area as where there are flip down seats. On a busy service when someone asks them to move their bikes………
This has been a problem on TPE ever since the 185s were introduced. Luggage, people or unfolded prams on the folding seats that refuse to move, and guards that won't assist.
However if you try and put your bike in the tip-up seats in the disabled section at the other end of the train, they ask you to move to the cycle space. Even if there's nobody else there, and even though the disabled spaces are battered to the high heavens from the ramp being carted in and out several times a day so the drinks trolley can get off...
 

py_megapixel

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Even without the issue of people putting luggage in it, the bike spaces in IETs are an issue because a lot of bikes won't fit on the hooks. As such they can't be hung up, but the compartments aren't long enough for them to fully fit in with both wheels on the ground, so they end up sticking out and causing an obstruction

The way cycles and luggage are handled on IETs just needs a complete rethink in my opinion.
 

Bletchleyite

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This has been a problem on TPE ever since the 185s were introduced. Luggage, people or unfolded prams on the folding seats that refuse to move, and guards that won't assist.
However if you try and put your bike in the tip-up seats in the disabled section at the other end of the train, they ask you to move to the cycle space. Even if there's nobody else there, and even though the disabled spaces are battered to the high heavens from the ramp being carted in and out several times a day so the drinks trolley can get off...

Tip up seats in cycle areas are a stupid idea. If the train is that busy, it's more useful as standing space, and if it isn't then it's fine for bikes to go there and you can sit elsewhere. I suspect they only exist because of box-ticking over the number of seats provided.

Mind you the entire 185 layout is stupid, having that isolated bit of Standard the wrong side of First. It would have been better at the inner end, like it is on all other Desiros, and First being both sides of the door but only half of the centre saloon, as per the likes of 321s.
 

43096

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I'd say this is a case of the biter being bit. Lost count of how many bikes are randomly dumped in disabled spaces or generally left in doorways and vestibules because the owner can't be bothered to find the proper area.
 

Bletchleyite

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I'd say this is a case of the biter being bit. Lost count of how many bikes are randomly dumped in disabled spaces or generally left in doorways and vestibules because the owner can't be bothered to find the proper area.

Much of this is because the TOCs don't make it very obvious from outside a train where the bike space actually is, nor where to stand on the platform for it. Only at termini is wandering up and down looking for it an option.

Also on some trains it is a dual purpose wheelchair-bike area.
 

BurtonM

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the bike spaces in IETs are an issue because a lot of bikes won't fit on the hooks. As such they can't be hung up, but the compartments aren't long enough for them to fully fit in with both wheels on the ground, so they end up sticking out and causing an obstruction
Voyagers too.
 

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