Media picks up on transport disparity between London and "the North"

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by AndrewE, 8 Jun 2019.

  1. Glen M

    Glen M Member

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    TOC from hell? The south has GTR?
     
  2. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    GTR is nowhere near as bad as Northern.
     
  3. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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    Parents might want to see the university, afterall they're part funding their child's course.

    Anyway, Open days are much more useful than looking at a website, especially as some universities look good on paper, but not in real life and vice versa.
     
  4. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Then they need to find a way to cough up to get there!

    People have to make choices. Anyway, this was always the way - the grant (when that existed) was means tested. And mostly the kind of parents we're talking about (people who can't afford National Express fares for a family and a taxi to the coach station between them, assuming they don't drive) will be the ones of children who will receive a full loan (remembering that it's not *really* a loan, more of a grad tax) and thus won't be supporting them very much anyway!

    I'm sorry, but this particular thing (not able to afford to make a one-off journey once in a lifetime that you have about 18 years' warning of when your kid is born) is either...
    a. A whine
    b. People who have poor spending priorities e.g. drink/smoke/Sky TV it all away
    c. Something made up on here (as people on here like making up niche situations as reasons not to do things - situations that most of the time don't exist and never did)
     
  5. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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    The 'means testing' is a bit off, your parents need to be almost on the minimum wage, to get the full loan.
    I'm lucky my parents can afford it, but I know a few people that are less lucky
     
  6. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Surely it's only those who don't have a car and may have difficulty affording a few National Express fares to attend open days, and also can't afford a taxi to the coach station AND can't find anyone to give them a lift?

    This is really the silliest one I've heard as a reason to fund local bus/rail services in my life.

    And if any parent tells their son/daughter they can only go to local universities because they're the only ones where the whole family can have a weekend away to the open day, they are fools. That smacks of "t'family is poor, we need to stay poor, can't have too much of a wider horizon as nobody in t'family ever had that". It's rubbish. Chuck the kid on a Megabus, get them a £15ish YHA dorm bed (that's only a couple of packets of fags not purchased these days), and let them broaden their own horizons.
     
  7. yorksrob

    yorksrob Veteran Member

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    Access to education is a very good reason to fund public transport. It can help people get to open days, but also enable people to get home at the end of term time, or even commute to the local college if they don't want to, or can't afford to stay at home.
     
  8. Adsy125

    Adsy125 Member

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    This is an important post that seems to be quietly ignored. When you go to London for the day and travel on the tube off peak as a visitor, everything seems fine, the same as my experience of rail in the North. However the reality for people commuting day to day is different. And the maxed out train lengths make improvements much more expensive than they are in the North. Don’t get me wrong, transport in the North isn’t great, but longer trains and a few platform extensions would solve many problems quite cheaply, a solution that just doesn’t work in London and the south east.
     
  9. coppercapped

    coppercapped Established Member

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    Even more so in 1961...!
    I was travelling alone by train to see relatives from the age of 11 - which would put the date at 1955. For all sorts of real and imagined reasons children are not allowed to be so independent today. So Mummy and Daddy have to make sure that their little ones don't get into hot water
    Nobody /knows/ whether a particular university is what one needs or not until one gets there. You can work out whether you like the site or the buildings - but until lectures, seminars and tutorials start nobody has any idea whether the subject or the lecturers are what you expected.

    Anyway, back in 1962 it was seen as a privilege to be accepted to attend a university or College of Advanced Technology - not a right. One was happy to have been allocated a place. Also the choices of courses was more restricted - the current fad for smorgasbord mixtures of topics didn't exist - it was maths; physics (sometimes pure or applied); chemistry (sometimes inorganic and organic); mechanical engineering; electrical engineering; law; music; economics; etc. One knew what one was getting into.
     
  10. TUC

    TUC Established Member

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    I agree. Back in the 1980s I visited the places that I was considering studying at, not least because, like most students, I was interviewed by them before being given an offer. Goodness know how those saying they can’t manage to visit a potential university would have coped with having to travel and be interviewed to even have a chance of a place!
     
  11. TUC

    TUC Established Member

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    The south east may well have further needs. Fine, but they’ve had plenty met already. Get to the back of the queue and wait your turn.
     
  12. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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    But the thing you're forgetting, is that London has greater needs for capacity than the rest of the UK.
    The money is spent on schemes that have the most benefit.
     
  13. driver_m

    driver_m Established Member

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    These threads always get predictable reactions from the usual suspects where someone from the Home Counties usually comes on bleating about how a 313 trundling about somewhere in the SE somehow equates to the North not being that badly done to. So I’m not going to get all Zen and above it all, I shall wade in feet first and say that the SE is seriously unbalancing the whole of the rest of our country with its incessant demands to be funded because that where the investment is. Well it has to look beyond itself for once and actually take one for the rest of the UK.

    I’m sorry but I’ve done some trekking around parts of the South and I’m not convinced that the likes of Berkhamstead, Canterbury, Oxford, Milton Keynes or Slough are somehow hard done by. I don’t even have to mention the North to give examples of places that aren’t doing that well. Stoke on Trent. (Neither Midland not Northern). Holyhead, inland Cornwall, such as Redruth and Camborne. I can throw various de-industrialised towns like mine (St Helens) they have been just left to rot, and there’s plenty similar, Burnley, Heavy Woollen districts in West Yorkshire, Castleford, etc etc. A bit of knitting and the odd new hospital might do a bit of good, but to have more sustained balance, we need to invest in our talented kids up here, and keep them here. Not have them feel they have to go down London or abroad to get decent jobs. The North is finally starting to speak with one voice, but there are plenty of other areas needing the help and it would be more appropriate to say it’s London/Home Counties vs Rest of UK than North/South. Sorry to all on here from the SE but you are harming the fabric of our country, even if it isn’t directly your fault, and you really need to get out to the places I’ve mentioned if you don’t buy it, to see it with your own eyes. One of the DJ’s on Radio 5 said after moving to Manchester he was shocked at the absolute poverty up here compared to down south.
     
  14. radamfi

    radamfi Established Member

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    In fact, the only regions of the UK that are considered "less developed" when it comes to EU Regional Policy (and thus qualify for the most EU cash) are Cornwall, West Wales and the Valleys. Greater Manchester, Cheshire, West Yorkshire, North Yorkshire and Northumbria are considered "more developed". They have a GDP of over 90% of the EU average.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Regional_policy_of_the_European_Union
     
  15. Djgr

    Djgr Member

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    And the average includes countries such as Bulgaria, Romania and Croatia and so exceeding 90% is not necessarily a fantastic achievement. As I'm sure you realise.
     
  16. radamfi

    radamfi Established Member

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    Oh, of course. I was pointing out how poor Wales and Cornwall are, given that on the same scale, West Yorkshire is considered "more developed".
     
  17. 158756

    158756 Member

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    If we compare with other countries in Northern and Western Europe the state don't look good at all. On the 2016 numbers, the latest I can find, in addition to Cornwall and West Wales already mentioned, the North East, Lancashire, Merseyside, Humberside, South Yorkshire, Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire, Lincolnshire, Shropshire and Staffordshire, as well as Devon, Dorset and Somerset in the South West, and Northern Ireland, are all at least as poor as the worst bit of the former East Germany.
     
  18. option

    option Member

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    but it's not 'London' that is actually paying for all that


    The TfL fares income is built upon infrastructure that was built or extended whilst London Transport was part of central government. (1948-70)
    DLR was built by the LDDC, so central government money.

    London Overground, though they take on the revenues risk, they get to keep the revenues, so they also get to retain any profits.
    Again, much of those revenues are built upon central gov spending, eg. South London Line '£64 million from the DfT and £15 million from TfL'
    GOBLIN electrification, where has the funding come from?

    It's even seemingly small things like Victoria Coach station. In 1970 it was nationalised, then in 1988 it was transferred to London ownership. Pretty much everywhere else the coach stations ended up with National Express.
    It gives TfL a nice income; https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Victoria_Coach_Station#Financials_[12]
    (>£1m profit the past few years)
    Then there's the rent from units in Underground stations (& presumably Overground stations)
     
  19. mmh

    mmh Established Member

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    It's a valid news source, whether you agree with its editorial stances or not.

    Which have changed considerably under its current editorship. For example it is now pro-EU and pro-remain.
     
  20. mmh

    mmh Established Member

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    You rely on friends and family, or you just don't go anywhere.

    In large parts of the country you apply for your provisional licence when you're 16 so you can take your test as soon after becoming 17 as possible. Because you need to.
     
  21. yorksrob

    yorksrob Veteran Member

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    I was very lucky to grow up in a railway town.
     
  22. Wolfie

    Wolfie Established Member

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    Crossrail is mostly being paid for by London. I have no problem with your plan just as long as London is not expected to pay a single penny for it.
     
    Last edited: 10 Jun 2019
  23. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    I think this is an entirely fair point - and availability of work is the whole reason I live in the South East at all! I suspect this is also true for @DarloRich?

    (Of course changing ways of working in IT, i.e. more remote working, may well bring me back north again at some point!)

    However there was no need for that. Most people in the SE didn't specifically choose to live there, they were born there and live there. Most people do not relocate around the country.

    He obviously led a sheltered life down South. OK, MK is really quite middle class, but there are some very poor people in London itself, and they suffer all the more because of the outrageous house prices and rents. At least you can get an old terrace in Oldham or Toxteth or somewhere like that for next to nowt - it's not posh but it's somewhere to live.

    I'd say London easily has the biggest rich-poor disparity in the UK by a country mile.
     
  24. Bantamzen

    Bantamzen Established Member

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    I don't think anyone denies that there are not problems in the capital, what is under debate is the potential disparity in investment between the two areas. London has probably the most joined-up transport infrastructure of anywhere in the UK. Yes parts of it need more capacity, though in part this is due to ever increasing numbers of people moving there (or at least within the commuter belt) because of a consistent lack of investment elsewhere.

    Personally speaking, my little corner of the world is reasonably served by rail, albeit with a growing need for capacity as 4 car is the maximum most stations can currently handle. However the bus network has been decimated, and despite the best efforts of action groups in the area, becoming increasingly disjointed with rail. Something as simple as a like for like TfL would go some way to improving that.

    But that would require investment in the North, which leads us back to the disparity.
     
  25. DarloRich

    DarloRich Veteran Member

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    No they are not. Everything is focused on Manchester, a bit on Leeds, a tiny bit on Liverpool and sod the rest. The North East is barely mentioned when taking about investment.

    Even then the conversation is based on petty jealousy rather than focus on what would actually benefit communities.

    Cheers. How do you think an argument about damaging the social fabric of our country would have gone down with the judge looking at giving me a CCJ or dealing with the bailiffs at the door? That's right none. Nonsense about "social fabric" wont keep food on the table or a roof over your head. It wasn't by choice that i gave up my family and friends to move to an area where i knew no one and the beer was terrible. It was because i was desperate. You, frankly, have no idea what you are talking about.

    As for the last sentence. God. it is almost as if you think moving south deletes all memories or family connection with some of the really poor areas in the North East that I lived in and my family still live in. I know what goes on. Thanks.

    Correct.
     
  26. bramling

    bramling Established Member

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    I wonder if the NHS offers surgery to install additional shoulders to rest all those chips on?

    If the argument is about investing in the north and rebalancing the economy, then I agree to at least some extent. Notwithstanding the point that this doesn't resolve problems which are issues *now*, and will still be issues no matter how much economic rebalancing is able to be achieved, most of the moans here and elsewhere seem to relate to dislike of Pacers and the ("southern castoff") class 319s - and before the first Pacer has even been withdrawn it seems 150s are the new focus of northern victimism. None of this helps further any argument about deprivation, it merely sounds like sour grapes, and serves to diminish what might otherwise be a serious point.

    As for St Helens, both its stations have seen their respective routes electrified in recent years, as well as St Helens Central station being rebuilt virtually from top to bottom only a few years ago - that's hardly being left to rot, at least from a transport investment perspective.

    There's plenty of places in the SE with deprivation - parts of London for a start, not to mention places well out of sight like Clacton, East Kent, Hastings, Great Yarmouth or Gosport. There seems to be this notion that everyone in the SE lives in gold-plated luxury, which simply isn't the case at all.

    None of this will be taken seriously whilst we hear frankly pathetic arguments like how it's so unfair X got investment and Y didn't, or that there should be some kind of carousel process for allocating investment spending in turn rather than looking at where benefit is maximised, or how terrible it is that the north got the perfectly satisfactory class 319s, or even dafter that it’s somehow the fault of others for having the audacity to be born in or move to a home county.
     
    Last edited: 13 Jun 2019
  27. bramling

    bramling Established Member

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    Excellent post.
     
  28. GrimShady

    GrimShady Established Member

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    Scotland's quite lucky in all honesty. For all of us who give ScotRail a hard time just remember that nothing....nothing is as bad as Northern Rail. Nothing!

    @DarloRich, quite right the NE never gets anything invested. The last best thing they got was the Newcastle Metro. Since then sod and all.
     
    Last edited: 27 Jun 2019
  29. Ianno87

    Ianno87 Established Member

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    ECML electrification too.
    And upgrade of most of the A1 (to the south) as motorway.
     
  30. DarloRich

    DarloRich Veteran Member

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    The bit between Newcastle and berwick got missed out as does the a66 upgrade! You cluld even add the a69 to that!
     

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