Proving to Southern that their own train exists!

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cookie365

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I've just had a delay repay claim rejected by Southern because 'our systems show that we did not have a train depart at the time you specified'.

It was the 12:03 Preston Park to Victoria on 17/4/16.

It definitely existed, at least until it got to East Croydon when it was cancelled for being so late. Maybe that's why they can't find it.

It's no longer on realtimetrains because it's more than a week ago - I can quite happily believe that Southern are so stupid they don't know when their own trains run, is there any way I can prove it to them?

Thanks
 
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yorkie

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I'd lodge a complaint with Passenger Focus, and a complaint to the DfT.

The train company (GTR) keep deleting trains instead of properly cancelling them, this then means that some of their staff think trains never existed. I'm told this isn't correct practice, so they should he hold to account for this by the DfT.

You need to word your complaint in a suitable way otherwise DfT will not do anything with it. Feel free to post a first draft here.

Don't let GTR get away with it (most people do, so GTR continue to misbehave)
 

strawbrick

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If the train is "deleted" then I am I correct in thinking that it cannot be "cancelled" and it cannot be "late" and that therefore it does not get counted in the performance figures?
 

LBSCR Times

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If the train is "deleted" then I am I correct in thinking that it cannot be "cancelled" and it cannot be "late" and that therefore it does not get counted in the performance figures?

It hasn't been deleted, it is still in the 'Trust' system.
Terminated East Croydon due to a Network Rail Incident (OC).
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
The train company (GTR) keep deleting trains instead of properly cancelling them, this then means that some of their staff think trains never existed. I'm told this isn't correct practice, so they should he hold to account for this by the DfT.

Usually done at the request of Network Rail, as if the alteration / cancellation is known at least the day before, then it saves NR from having to cancel it on the day, and also allows the various Journey Planners to show what actually exists. otherwise a passenger thinks the train is running because NR haven't cancelled it off on the day.
Of course, the down-side is that those of lesser knowledge in Customer Services etc don't realise what has happened (or understand!).
 

AndrewE

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How about emailing them a scanned copy of the published timetable with the train highlighted? (or emailing a link to a RTT schedule for a day when the train has run?)
A
 

cookie365

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That's the one, thank you bb21 :)

How did you access it? Judging by the URL you need to know the 'VAR schedule UID'.

And thanks for everyone's advice - I'm going to give them one more chance to get it right, with a screenshot from that page as proof

Not that I've got any goodwill towards them at the moment.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Ah, I see the UID seems to be consistent across different days, so I've found the train I caught at East Croydon to get to Victoria which I think was the first one to arrive (it was itself delayed)

http://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/W60213/2016/04/17/advanced

That arrived at Victoria 1350 (and a half!) so given the scheduled arrival of the original train was 1320 it looks like Southern are ripping off every single passenger to Victoria of their 30 minute delay repay (my claim is >60 minutes as I missed connections).
 

talldave

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Of course, the down-side is that those of lesser knowledge in Customer Services etc don't realise what has happened (or understand!).

It's their job to know ffs! Particularly if their job is dealing with compensation claims for journeys that didn't run to plan.
 

bb21

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That's the one, thank you bb21 :)

How did you access it? Judging by the URL you need to know the 'VAR schedule UID'.

And thanks for everyone's advice - I'm going to give them one more chance to get it right, with a screenshot from that page as proof

Not that I've got any goodwill towards them at the moment.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Ah, I see the UID seems to be consistent across different days, so I've found the train I caught at East Croydon to get to Victoria which I think was the first one to arrive (it was itself delayed)

Sometimes repeated scheduled exist the following week, so in this case using the schedule for 24th and then manually changing the dates worked.

Not always, but worth a try if you don't have access to internal sources.
 

yorkie

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I don't understand the fuss over Realtimetrains; OpenTrainTimes shows this train and Recent Train Times is also good.

In this case, as the train wasn't deleted, it should be straightforward and it's bizarre that the claim was rejected; there is no excuse. GTR are an awful company though so it's not too surprising.
 

crehld

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Have just has this email response from GTR regarding a journey of mine I claimed compensation for back in early February (yes it took them that long):

Decision: Declined
Having checked our records for the details of the delay you provided to us, our systems show that we did not have a train depart at the time you specified.

Clearly the OP's response is not an isolated incident. The delayed train I was on irrefutabley existed. And a check of the original claim I submitted shows it to be free from error on my part.

On what basis are GTR making repeated claims that trains don't exist despite the empirical reality that they do? The only two possible conclusions which can be drawn are either incompetence or malicious intent to withhold payment of compensation due (it's probably the former).
 
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talldave

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Have just has this email response from GTR regarding a journey of mine I claimed compensation for back in early February (yes it took them that long):



Clearly the OP's response is not an isolated incident. The delayed train I was on irrefutabley existed. And a check of the original claim I submitted shows it to be free from error on my part.

On what basis are GTR making repeated claims that trains don't exist despite the empirical reality that they do? The only two possible conclusions which can be drawn are either incompetence or malicious intent to withhold payment of compensation due (it's probably the former).

I agree, I doubt anyone in GTR management has sufficient IQ to formulate a malicious policy. After all, they're thick enough to think that their new ticket site was worth inflicting on customers, bugs and all.
 

cjmillsnun

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I agree, I doubt anyone in GTR management has sufficient IQ to formulate a malicious policy. After all, they're thick enough to think that their new ticket site was worth inflicting on customers, bugs and all.

Nothing to do with IQ. They honestly don't care. They treat frontline staff just as badly as passengers.
 

miami

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Have just has this email response from GTR regarding a journey of mine I claimed compensation for back in early February (yes it took them that long):

we did not have a train depart at the time you specified

Well they're accurate. I assume the lack of departure is the reason you're claiming!

(That's assuming you're claiming for a cancellation, rather than a delay. It could be their systems/training are set up to ignore cancellations)
 

crehld

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Well they're accurate. I assume the lack of departure is the reason you're claiming!

(That's assuming you're claiming for a cancellation, rather than a delay. It could be their systems/training are set up to ignore cancellations)

They are not accurate at all. My train departed on time, was delayed on route and caused me to miss my connection, further exacerbating the delay to my journey.

Their systems and training should not under any circumstances be set up to ignore cancellations.
 

mailbyrail

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why is it when a passenger makes a mistake it's simply 'pay up and put it down to experience' or we'll prosecute but when the rail company doesn't know what it's doing that's the passenger's fault as well?
I've had friends sold wrong tickets, ticket machines charging wrong fares and the companies get away with it every time, but woe betide it if the passenger steps out of line. When they don't even know what trains they run then there's no hope.
 

talldave

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why is it when a passenger makes a mistake it's simply 'pay up and put it down to experience' or we'll prosecute but when the rail company doesn't know what it's doing that's the passenger's fault as well?
I've had friends sold wrong tickets, ticket machines charging wrong fares and the companies get away with it every time, but woe betide it if the passenger steps out of line. When they don't even know what trains they run then there's no hope.

Because most TOCs are run by idiots who see passengers as fare evaders they haven't caught yet?
 

island

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why is it when a passenger makes a mistake it's simply 'pay up and put it down to experience' or we'll prosecute but when the rail company doesn't know what it's doing that's the passenger's fault as well?
I've had friends sold wrong tickets, ticket machines charging wrong fares and the companies get away with it every time, but woe betide it if the passenger steps out of line. When they don't even know what trains they run then there's no hope.

Because the law says it's a criminal offence to travel without a ticket [except in prescribed circumstances] and not a criminal offence to mis-sell a ticket or all those other things?
 

cookie365

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That's interesting.

realtime.nationalrail.co.uk redirects back to the main national rail site, so I guess you need to link directly to a particular page?

Still waiting for a reply from Southern to my complaint. Perhaps their managers are busy at the moment ;)
 

swt_passenger

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That's interesting.

realtime.nationalrail.co.uk redirects back to the main national rail site, so I guess you need to link directly to a particular page?

Looks as if it's an internal version of the information. Probably cannot be reached from the normal internet.
 

Sacro

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Looks as if it's an internal version of the information. Probably cannot be reached from the normal internet.

It's CC LDB, and yes it can be accessed from the normal internet, you just need a username / password.
 
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Mojo

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It's CC LDB, and yes it can be accessed from the normal internet, you just need a username / password.

It don't think it is. That only shows the current day's service and for a short while the service from the day before. It's also not green.
 

crehld

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I received another reply. It expresses regret that I am dissatisfied with the assessment that the train did not exist, despite the incontrovertible fact that it very much did exist.

I am requested to submit the details of my delay repay claim again so it can be looked at (for a third time now). This request is in direct reply to an email which provides this information, thereby demonstrating a wilful neglect to engage appropriately with my concerns and my complaint.

This has gone on for an unacceptable amount of time now. Another email has been sent, once again providing the details of my very simple claim along with supporting evidence. They have been given a deadline, and failure address it satisfactorily by that deadline will lead to escalation.
 

yorkie

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Looks as if it's an internal version of the information. Probably cannot be reached from the normal internet.
It is on the internet, it's just password protected (for no logical reason as there are many sites with the info such as OpenTrainTimes, which even includes live maps!)
 

Wolfie

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I received another reply. It expresses regret that I am dissatisfied with the assessment that the train did not exist, despite the incontrovertible fact that it very much did exist.

I am requested to submit the details of my delay repay claim again so it can be looked at (for a third time now). This request is in direct reply to an email which provides this information, thereby demonstrating a wilful neglect to engage appropriately with my concerns and my complaint.

This has gone on for an unacceptable amount of time now. Another email has been sent, once again providing the details of my very simple claim along with supporting evidence. They have been given a deadline, and failure address it satisfactorily by that deadline will lead to escalation.

Complain to DfT (copying your MP naturally) about their breach of franchise obligations - couldn't happen to a nicer company...<D
 
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