Petition to bring back the buffet on GWR

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irish_rail

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https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/great-western-railway-bring-back-the-buffet
Provide passengers on the GWR route with a proper catering service by reinstating the buffet car in all new Intercity Express Trains from which it has been removed.

To ensure the buffet service remains on the route, the Department for Transport should ensure that this is a requirement in the next franchise agreement for this route.

Why is this important?
Great Western Railway (GWR) has started the roll out of its new Intercity Express Trains servicing various routes including long distance ones such London to Penzance and London to South Wales. Despite GWR’s claims that the new trains provide passengers with ‘more space, more comfort’, its actions tell a different story.

With a total disregard for the passenger experience, GWR has removed the buffet car from its new trains. On-train buffets provide passengers (who often travelling long journeys) with a proper catering service that has the option of hot meals and can be accessed at their convenience...
Petition to bring back buffets on GWr long distance services. Only takes a minute and the more signatures the more likely something will be done . After all if LNER can have buffets why shouldn't GWR. Certainly should be feasible with the 802s .....
 
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Parallel

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To be fair, when I last looked on twitter about 50% of the complaints were about how poor the catering service is. What should have happened is the DfT and GWR should have listened to passengers in the first place before the trains were built. If there is any option to retrofit a buffet in the future, probably only worth doing to the 9 car units but I’ve signed it anyway.
 

hexagon789

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https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/great-western-railway-bring-back-the-buffet

Petition to bring back buffets on GWr long distance services. Only takes a minute and the more signatures the more likely something will be done . After all if LNER can have buffets why shouldn't GWR. Certainly should be feasible with the 802s .....
I don't think it's going to happen. LNER (them VTEC) specified this to start with and their routes are generally longer.

Much of GWR's main high-speed traffic is basically glorified outer suburban commuter from the likes of Bristol and Cardiff.

More importantly I can't see seats getting removed for a buffet - capacity is everything these days.
 

Deafdoggie

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Hmmm...difficult choice, seat or buffet? I’ll take seats please.
It’s all well and good starting these petitions, but when seats have been removed to install one and the company say to those who then complain of overcrowding “it’s what you asked for” the same people complain again!
As with all petitions though, if everyone who signs it had been making purchases from the buffet it wouldn’t have been removed in the first place.
 

cactustwirly

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I don't think it's going to happen. LNER (them VTEC) specified this to start with and their routes are generally longer.

Much of GWR's main high-speed traffic is basically glorified outer suburban commuter from the likes of Bristol and Cardiff.

More importantly I can't see seats getting removed for a buffet - capacity is everything these days.
Not really, Cardiff is 2 hours from London, same as Leeds on LNER.
Plymouth is about 3 hours from London, and Penzance 5, which is a longer journey than Edinburgh - London!
 

hwl

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Hmmm...difficult choice, seat or buffet? I’ll take seats please.
It’s all well and good starting these petitions, but when seats have been removed to install one and the company say to those who then complain of overcrowding “it’s what you asked for” the same people complain again!
Yep seats are going to win these days.
It will need about a year to see what settles down with the May and December TT changes, Crossrail changes and whether Oxford is going to get electrified at any point soon.
I suspect some of the new capacity will get used up fairly quickly.
 

dk1

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Not really, Cardiff is 2 hours from London, same as Leeds on LNER.
Plymouth is about 3 hours from London, and Penzance 5, which is a longer journey than Edinburgh - London!
Yet we are getting them on our new fleet to Norwich & our journey time will drop to as little as 90mins :p
 

Ianno87

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Not really, Cardiff is 2 hours from London, same as Leeds on LNER.
Plymouth is about 3 hours from London, and Penzance 5, which is a longer journey than Edinburgh - London!

...and what percentage of passengers do the full journey?

All very well quoting the extremes but not the average, median or upper quartiles...

West Ruislip to Epping on the Central Line is approaching 2 hours, so should that have a buffet car too?
 
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hexagon789

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Not really, Cardiff is 2 hours from London, same as Leeds on LNER.
Plymouth is about 3 hours from London, and Penzance 5, which is a longer journey than Edinburgh - London!
I was generalising and I deliberately didn't mention the West Country. :lol:

Anyway - I still think GWR has much more of a commuter base on their InterCity services than LNER simply because you have the concentration of towns such as Reading and Swindon along the main route into London.

Perhaps I should add - GWR didn't choose buffets and nothing is going to change that. It's done, it's happened and that's that I think.

They did to my surprise maintain the "Pullman" dining services so that's one thing.

(Trying to balance things out a bit ;))
 

hexagon789

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Yet we are getting them on our new fleet to Norwich & our journey time will drop to as little as 90mins :p
Not on all services though ;)

It's rather like ScotRail making out Edinburgh-Glasgow in 42 mins qualifies as progress.

Or GWR and is it Bath in 75?
 

Adsy125

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I was generalising and I deliberately didn't mention the West Country. :lol:

Anyway - I still think GWR has much more of a commuter base on their InterCity services than LNER simply because you have the concentration of towns such as Reading and Swindon along the main route into London.

Perhaps I should add - GWR didn't choose buffets and nothing is going to change that. It's done, it's happened and that's that I think.

They did to my surprise maintain the "Pullman" dining services so that's one thing.

(Trying to balance things out a bit ;))
GWR weren't allowed to choose buffets, the DFT decided they would get a trolley, and GWR are stuck with it, whether they approve or not.
 

tom73

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Must confess never seen the attraction in buffets myself. Sky high prices for mediocre food. Always bring my own snacks whether it is 2½ hours on the train or 4-5 hours on the coach. I can survive without a hot drink for a few hours. I refuse to pay £2 for a teabag swimming in boiling water in a disposable cup.
 

dk1

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Not on all services though ;)

It's rather like ScotRail making out Edinburgh-Glasgow in 42 mins qualifies as progress.

Or GWR and is it Bath in 75?
Two each way is a good start. They however will not neccessarily have catering & if they do it is likely to be a trolley as 755s are planned to work these initially.
 

dk1

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Must confess never seen the attraction in buffets myself. Sky high prices for mediocre food. Always bring my own snacks whether it is 2½ hours on the train or 4-5 hours on the coach. I can survive without a hot drink for a few hours. I refuse to pay £2 for a teabag swimming in boiling water in a disposable cup.
Each to their own I suppose. I am completely the opposite & use onboard catering often several times in a long journey. Virgin Trains always get my vote for choice & availability.
 

Bletchleyite

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yelling into an uncaring void there- how many seats do you propose removing from each set?
A minibuffet would only remove about 8 (two table bays). Switch a couple of tables to airline and squash them up a bit in that coach (the legroom is extremely generous) and I reckon you could probably do it without losing any, or maybe one row of 4 at most.
 

Mutant Lemming

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Not really, Cardiff is 2 hours from London, same as Leeds on LNER.
Plymouth is about 3 hours from London, and Penzance 5, which is a longer journey than Edinburgh - London!
So if the question was put as 'would you rather stand for 5 hours or have a buffet' am sure the response would be different.
 

Ianno87

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A minibuffet would only remove about 8 (two table bays). Switch a couple of tables to airline and squash them up a bit in that coach (the legroom is extremely generous) and I reckon you could probably do it without losing any, or maybe one row of 4 at most.
But then the selection is little better than a trolley...and people won't bother to walk down to it.
 

swt_passenger

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Do we really need another discussion about the pros and cons of GW buffets given there’s already one going on right now in the GW Class 800 thread in the rolling stock forum?
 

Bletchleyite

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But then the selection is little better than a trolley...and people won't bother to walk down to it.
I reckon you could design something very good to fit in a "minimalist" space like that. You could design it for docking of airline-style trolleys to ease loading and unloading, too.

FWIW, if you still went for a small counter but took two window bays, you could put some Eurostar style standing tables in and you'd actually gain seats, as people will choose to stand at a far higher density than they would be seated, because that's what you do in a pub. I went to a pub last night and spent the whole evening standing in a more crowded situation than a typical peak-time LNR out of Euston (though less crowded than a Saturday afternoon 4-car), but this didn't bother me or anyone else as it's just part of going to a busy pub, and in many ways gives that type of pub its atmosphere.
 

Darandio

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Do we really need another discussion about the pros and cons of GW buffets given there’s already one going on right now in the GW Class 800 thread in the rolling stock forum?
I think a dedicated thread is much better, much easier to read views on the subject rather than sporadic views hidden throughout a thread talking mainly about seats.
 

irish_rail

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...and what percentage of passengers do the full journey?

All very well quoting the extremes but not the average, median or upper quartiles...

West Ruislip to Epping on the Central Line is approaching 2 hours, so should that have a buffet car too?
Ok you clearly have no experience of the padd to Penzance route so I'll enlighten u.
A very good proportion of travellers are travelling from at least Plymouth to London ( that's 3 hours 15 mins - longer I think than London to newcastle) .
There is also a decent.percentage travelling from within Cornwall to London which is approximately 4 hours depending on where u join . So no, probably only about 2 percent of the train is doing Penzance to London but at least 50 percent are probably on there for a minimum of 3 hours....
 

irish_rail

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Regarding taking seats out, if common sense prevailed all the 9 car 802s would have buffets fitted and be used primarily on the padd to Penzance route. The loss of 16 or so seats on a 9 car would be far less damaging than fitting buffets to 5 car sets which I accept may be trickier and less advantageous.
 

irish_rail

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And with LNER , Anglia , TPE all introducing buffets for much shorter journeys it seems scandalous that GWR passengers are paying the price for dft incompetence.
 

hexagon789

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GWR weren't allowed to choose buffets, the DFT decided they would get a trolley, and GWR are stuck with it, whether they approve or not.
Forgot the DfT decided on the GWR IET spec.

Two each way is a good start. They however will not neccessarily have catering & if they do it is likely to be a trolley as 755s are planned to work these initially.
I'm not sure they'll increase that tbh, don't think they'll want to cut the intermediate calls somehow.

A minibuffet would only remove about 8 (two table bays). Switch a couple of tables to airline and squash them up a bit in that coach (the legroom is extremely generous) and I reckon you could probably do it without losing any, or maybe one row of 4 at most.
LNER's minibuffet costs 16 seats compared to a normal IET TS vehicle.
 

dk1

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Forgot the DfT decided on the GWR IET spec.



I'm not sure they'll increase that tbh, don't think they'll want to cut the intermediate calls somehow.



LNER's minibuffet costs 16 seats compared to a normal IET TS vehicle.
No need to cut local calls, that is controversial. Only Manningtree has lost out with these from May & to be fair it is very well served anyway. It has always been said that the two is just the start if successful.
 

fgwrich

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And with LNER , Anglia , TPE all introducing buffets for much shorter journeys it seems scandalous that GWR passengers are paying the price for dft incompetence.
Not forgetting the new Mini Buffet type effort ScotRail are installing in their HST sets too. The ridiculous thing about this scenario is that the removal of the buffet in part came from one of the most ambiguous survey's every presented to passengers. it apparently put it as - "Do you want a Buffet or a Personal at seat service on your new trains". Now, a personal at seat service sounds very nice, the idea of someone personally bringing me some quality food from the buffet car. That of course is the roux for a Trolley Service, which is what we are now stuck with.

I do agree that it probably wouldn't be sensible to install one on the 5 cars, but the 9 cars certainly should have been built with one. After all, we're now stuck in the rather ridiculous situation whereby every 80X on the GWR fleet has a large kitchen built into them, but will only ever see limited use per day on the handful of Pullman services they operate. It's also becoming more often to see the trolley "marooned" at the trolley storage area and effectively operating as a shop from there - why? Because it cant get through, or by the time they've made it through they then have to get back to the storage area to either replace the water or re-stock from the limited stock they carry on board.
 
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hexagon789

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No need to cut local calls, that is controversial. Only Manningtree has lost out with these from May & to be fair it is very well served anyway. It has always been said that the two is just the start if successful.
Unless the frequency is upped to 3tph, how can one have Norwich in 90 every hour and not cut intermediate calls though?
 
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