On late night trains ...

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DiscoStu

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... why do the "guards" not inspect tickets?

A friends of mine said recently that he always travels into London to visit his family after 10pm because nobody ever checks tickets, and the barriers are always open in the London station.

Is there a reason for this? or is it just because the guard can't be bothered?
 
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anthony263

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I have always seen the gaurd check tickets when I have used the 23:15 Cardiff - Carmarthen & 01:50 Fishguard Hbr - Swansea services
 

156441

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As a guard myself it's generally done for our own safety. Most attacks/Assaults happen at night and although yes it will let the unhonest travel free, the train wouldn't be going anywhere if the guard/conductor got attacked!!
 

DiscoStu

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As a guard myself it's generally done for our own safety. Most attacks/Assaults happen at night and although yes it will let the unhonest travel free, the train wouldn't be going anywhere if the guard/conductor got attacked!!


I did wonder whether that could be the case .. thanks.
 

NathanPrior

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I had a ticket inspector on the last train at 23:28 from Exeter St David's to Digby & Sowton once. I was generally amazed at this due to it being a) a friday night and b) late
 

LE Greys

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Doubt FCC RPI even on duty after 2200 normally !

Not the RPIs, although the BTP put in an occasional appearance at Stevenage, and the platform staff stay until the last express has passed through (thankfully, I've been on it with heavy luggage many times and have had to use the lift) but nobody ever checks tickets. Stevenage station late on a Friday night can be scary, being on the main pedestrian route from the New Town to the leisure park.
 

34D

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Doubt FCC RPI even on duty after 2200 normally !

I assure you this most certainly is not correct.

May I remind all forum members that the obligation to buy a ticket applies at all times subject to suitable facilities, and if your station is in a Penalty Fare area you would do well to acquaint yourselves with its rules.
 

Searle

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Stevenage station late on a Friday night can be scary, being on the main pedestrian route from the New Town to the leisure park.

I think you can just say Stevenage is scary in general on a Friday night ;)

and I think in all the time I've traveled with FCC from HFN to London, I've probably seen a couple of guards checking tickets in a few years :p Saying that I am always traveling off peak.
 

Yew

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ON reasonably late services on the robin hood line tickets are often checked, however the two security guards may be part of the reason why :)
 

Greenback

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I have always seen the gaurd check tickets when I have used the 23:15 Cardiff - Carmarthen & 01:50 Fishguard Hbr - Swansea services

I agree. I use late night services from Swansea regularly, and it is very rare indeed that tickets aren;t checked.

As a guard myself it's generally done for our own safety. Most attacks/Assaults happen at night and although yes it will let the unhonest travel free, the train wouldn't be going anywhere if the guard/conductor got attacked!!

Indeed. I am sure that the TOC's concerned have weighed up the cost of revenue colelction at these times against the money raised and decided it is not worth the trouble.
 

175001

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As a guard myself it's generally done for our own safety. Most attacks/Assaults happen at night and although yes it will let the unhonest travel free, the train wouldn't be going anywhere if the guard/conductor got attacked!!

Bingo.

1st words of the rule book....."your safety is your main priority".

Guard attacked = no service. End of story.
 

WestCoast

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A few weeks ago, I did see a somewhat 'brave' guard head out on a late train full of pretty rowdy drunks and it appeared that they had no tickets (ticket offices all closed). It could have easily turned nasty had the guard not got the passengers on side by 'bartering' with child/railcard fares. Sure, against the rules and the guy would probably get into trouble if the TOC knew, but he brought in some revenue over none and I thought it demonstrated common sense in that specific situation.
 

185

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... why do the "guards" not inspect tickets?

A friends of mine said recently that he always travels into London to visit his family after 10pm because nobody ever checks tickets, and the barriers are always open in the London station.

Is there a reason for this? or is it just because the guard can't be bothered?

If its London, chances are there is no guard. Driver-only rubbish goes on down there.

Meanwhile in't north..... not true.

One door open at Piccadilly, ('local door only') ticket machine ready, queue them up, get shut of the dossers and deadlegs that don't want to pay, put the holidaymakers into First Class, and as soon as the platform staff give you the tip, ding ding, and you prevent the problems from boarding in the first place.
 

BestWestern

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If its London, chances are there is no guard. Driver-only rubbish goes on down there.

Meanwhile in't north..... not true.

One door open at Piccadilly, ('local door only') ticket machine ready, queue them up, get shut of the dossers and deadlegs that don't want to pay, put the holidaymakers into First Class, and as soon as the platform staff give you the tip, ding ding, and you prevent the problems from boarding in the first place.

A very effective method of rif-raf avoidance. Sadly, our TOC don't like it, for 'safety reasons'. Evidently not the Guard's safety! :|
 
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cuccir

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A very effective method of rif-raf avoidance. Sadly, out TOC don't like it, for 'safety reasons'. Evidently not the Guard's safety! :|

I think that it's quite common at origin stations on late night trains - the late Northern Rail service from Newcastle to Darlington via Durham (which use to run to Middlesbrough) often operates this way.

In the other direction, I've never seen ticket checks on the last couple of Durham-Newcastle trains, just after midnight, and the barriers are always open at both stations. Totally understandable though, and not worth it for the sake of collecting probably around 5 fares!
 

PR1Berske

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... why do the "guards" not inspect tickets?

A friends of mine said recently that he always travels into London to visit his family after 10pm because nobody ever checks tickets, and the barriers are always open in the London station.

Is there a reason for this? or is it just because the guard can't be bothered?

In my experience, the later/latest trains from Manchester back to Preston/Blackpool are not the kind of trains a guard should venture through!
 

jon0844

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Doubt FCC RPI even on duty after 2200 normally !

They are, but there are only so many of them. Tend to work in groups or do a sting at stations normally closed (open gates, closed ticket office etc). Nowhere near enough though.

You probably do get the worst fare evaders at night, but also a lot more people who are coming home from a day out that do have a ticket. So given the likelihood of those without tickets being a problem, I can see why they're not considered a priority a lot of the time. Sadly, these people can cause all sorts of problems for other passengers so I wish there were spare BTP officers that accompanied RPIs on trains at night more frequently.
 

PR1Berske

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A few weeks ago, I did see a somewhat 'brave' guard head out on a late train full of pretty rowdy drunks and it appeared that they had no tickets (ticket offices all closed). It could have easily turned nasty had the guard not got the passengers on side by 'bartering' with child/railcard fares. Sure, against the rules and the guy would probably get into trouble if the TOC knew, but he brought in some revenue over none and I thought it demonstrated common sense in that specific situation.

I like this attitude, though. If a guard went in with the rulebook, and got abused (physically or otherwise), there would be an outcry

If he was able to get something in the way of payment, then I'm all for that.
 

Scotrail84

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If its London, chances are there is no guard. Driver-only rubbish goes on down there.

Meanwhile in't north..... not true.

One door open at Piccadilly, ('local door only') ticket machine ready, queue them up, get shut of the dossers and deadlegs that don't want to pay, put the holidaymakers into First Class, and as soon as the platform staff give you the tip, ding ding, and you prevent the problems from boarding in the first place.

A manual barrier, I have done this myself on the last services. Works a treat.
 

cle

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I assure you this most certainly is not correct.

May I remind all forum members that the obligation to buy a ticket applies at all times subject to suitable facilities, and if your station is in a Penalty Fare area you would do well to acquaint yourselves with its rules.

Surely the obligation for guards to do their job also applies at all hours?

If they're scared of late shifts, get a 9-5.
 

Monty

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Surely the obligation for guards to do their job also applies at all hours?

If they're scared of late shifts, get a 9-5.

Their first obligation is their own safety, then the safety of the passengers. Not going through a train trying to get a fare out of drunkards, who ironically enough we have a duty of care too. By all means patrol your train, but going through with a machine flashing your float about late at night is asking for trouble.
 

Monty

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Actually I should correct myself, it's guards safety, colleagues safety and passenger safety and in that order. ;)
 

GadgetMan

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Surely the obligation for guards to do their job also applies at all hours?

If they're scared of late shifts, get a 9-5.

As soon as TOCs and BTP start providing the support required, we'll be more than happy to deal with the plebs in our society. Alternatively, supplying us with shotguns would be just as handy.
 

John55

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If its London, chances are there is no guard. Driver-only rubbish goes on down there.

As a mere passenger I would point out as a regular user of Southeastern since DOO I now have 6 trains per hour off-peak instead of 2 and it has been many, many years since the fabulous "train cancelled due to shortage of staff" announcement has lead to be late home.

DOO is not rubbish for this customer.
 
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