Stations to avoid and why

BrianW

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22 Mar 2017
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I saw on another thread a reference to a station as SGB, which meaning nothing to me I Googled on- well!!!
Smethwick Galton Bridge- described on websites as:
- Useless signage
- Steep stairs, once you find them
- Urine- soaked
- Cold benches
Is there a thread already for 'worst stations'?
Is there any way of knowing if anything gets done to improve matters?
Any 'update' on SGB conditions?


http://foursquare.com/v/smethwick-galton-bridge-railway-station-sgb/4b06e477f964a52059f222e3
Paul Wheeler said:
The signs around the station are really confusing but apart from that it's not a bad station
Helen Grounds said:
I've travelled to many stations but this place has won Worst Station Ever Award. Loads of stairs, lifts broken, benches suck, waiting rooms locked or smell of piss.
Jim Lawrence said:
Dingy and quite often smells of urine
Andy Beedon said:
The benches are weird and cold. Not advised for anyone with a bad back.
 
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AndrewE

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It's a very useful interchange, if a bit confusing sometimes (but no worse than Tamworth in that respect) and maybe the similarities are for the same underlying reasons.
I've probably used it a dozen times in the last few years and don't think many of the complaints are justified. I don't know of a single station with warm seats! And I have never noticed a urine smell there either.
I follow the signs carefully and have learnt to use the lifts (which I generally avoid, not being disabled, emburdened with push-chairs or excessive amounts of baggage or just plain lazy) as I do at Tamworth.
 

Jamesrob637

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I changed trains there once around two years ago and didn't find it much different from any other station!
 

61653 HTAFC

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Another planet...
Manchester Oxford Road due to crowding (probably less of an issue right now to be fair!)

Wembley Central for being so dark and unwelcoming.

Nottingham because nearly all services stop at the far end of the platforms from the entrance, or it seems that way at least.

Only used Smethwick GB a couple of times, but didn't think it was too bad. In fact it seemed fairly pleasant.
 

yorkie

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... I Googled on- well!!!
Smethwick Galton Bridge- described on websites as:
- Useless signage
- Steep stairs, once you find them
- Urine- soaked
- Cold benches
..
Do you have a source for this?

Edit: a source has now been provided. I would take many of those comments with a pinch of salt as I've not noticed any particular issues when I've changed trains there.
 
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sw1ller

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It's a very useful interchange, if a bit confusing sometimes (but no worse than Tamworth in that respect) and maybe the similarities are for the same underlying reasons.
I've probably used it a dozen times in the last few years and don't think many of the complaints are justified. I don't know of a single station with warm seats! And I have never noticed a urine smell there either.
I follow the signs carefully and have learnt to use the lifts (which I generally avoid, not being disabled, emburdened with push-chairs or excessive amounts of baggage or just plain lazy) as I do at Tamworth.
good luck using the lifts there at the moment. They’ve been out of action due to an upgrade. I park my cab right next to them on the way to New Street and the amount of people that ignore the signs and the huge blue boarded off walls is staggering. Had to stop a few people in wheelchairs getting off too as some of our guards weren’t aware.
 

Merle Haggard

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Northampton
Mention of Smethwick Galton Bridge reminds me of an example of London Midland's apparent inability to think things through.
At the entrance to the lift on the lower level (which is, for those unfamiliar, on the New Street to Wolverhampton line) there was a London Midland sign that stated that, in the event of a lift failure, passengers should travel to The Hawthorns or Langley Green and use the lifts there.
Unfortunately, trains serving those two stations leave from the upper level; to reach the platforms there one needs to.. err... use the lift.
When travelling to the Severn Valley I did use SGB rather than walk from New St. to Moor St., but London Midland's habit of running trains non-stop from Snow Hill to Stourbridge if a few minutes late put me off that idea, as did their practice of (locking) the waiting shelter.
 

RHolmes

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Manchester Victoria

- Roof over platforms 3-6 absolutely covered in diesel particulates (Can sometimes be difficult to breath in colder, smoggier weather)
- Frequent platform alterations
- Peak-hour overcrowding
- Crowding on main concourse during Manchester arena events
- Inaccessible ticket offices
- One way stair system not followed by most passengers
- Lack of facilities on platform, no toilets, no heated waiting areas, 1 vending machine on platform 4, Lack of seating platform-side
- Ticket barriers favour exiting passengers at all times rather than those trying to board trains
- Lack of access to Metrolink platforms from Northern side of station such as from the exterior car park or bridge unlike most metrolink stops
 

mrcheek

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Birmingham New Street.

Especially if youre making a tight connection. OK, so the new area above the platforms is nice and spacious. But it can be very difficult to work out where youre going
 

trubla

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15 Jul 2012
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Polesworth.

You are likely to have a long wait for a train as with the emergency timetable even the 1 train a day no longer stops .
 

thenorthern

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CrossCountry used to recommend avoiding Birmingham New Street and even used to put a guide in their timetables of how to avoid it.
 

lxfe_mxtterz

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Birmingham New Street.

Especially if youre making a tight connection. OK, so the new area above the platforms is nice and spacious. But it can be very difficult to work out where youre going
Seconded.

I once ended up missing two consecutive services (to where I was going) departing from different platforms, because I failed to navigate the station in time. It certainly doesn't help that platforms are segmented into "A" and "B" sections! :(
 

Train Maniac

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I have a certain dislike of London Victoria. Crowded, no litter bins, beggars, overpriced kiosks and Southeastern consistently messing up the late train back to Maidstone East. Several times i have almost been stranded in London because the train home has either been late or cancelled altogether. The Southern side is just depressingly dark under the concrete offices.
 

Old Yard Dog

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I agree completely about Birmingham New Street. Dangerously narrow platforms, frequent last minute platform changes and very easy to go up a set of stairs and find yourself in a place where you can't get to the platform you want without going down again, moving along the platform, then up again, then down again! (Bruxelles Central is similar - I once missed two Ghent trains in a row due to last minute platform changes)

My first experience of New Street was in the 1970's going to St Andrews to watch Birmingham City for the first time. It took me so long to even find my way out of the station that I had to take a taxi which I could ill afford.

I also agree about Smethwick GB - a depressing interchange station with no toilets or cafe. And I also agree about Manchester Victoria which has no toilets or catering inside the ticket barriers. Likewise Moorfields.

Shrewsbury is an awful station to change trains if you need to get to or from P3 in a hurry.

And the staff at Milton Keynes Central and Crewe have always struck me as over-officious jobsworths - some of them anyway.
 

Bald Rick

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London Euston - simply because you stand an even chance of being denied boarding with a valid ticket; some gateline staff refuse to accept that they might possibly not know all permitted routes!
An even chance? Does that mean that half of all passengers with valid tickets are denied boarding?
 

FQTV

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27 Apr 2012
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Ashton under lyne - Very scary station on a rowdy Saturday night.
In a similar vein, I have had the misfortune to alight at Newton For Hyde.

Rock Ferry bears a particularly strong resemblance to an Allied operations base deep behind enemy lines, too.
 

111-111-1

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Birmingham New Street.

Especially if youre making a tight connection. OK, so the new area above the platforms is nice and spacious. But it can be very difficult to work out where youre going
A station that had a wide bridge in more or less in the middle of the platforms with easy access to all platforms and a single barrier line altered to make changing platforms awkward unless they are in the same grouping of platforms.

Accepted that the bridge did not look great but it was practical and had WH Smith, food outlets and a (crap) bar to get supplies from.

The bridge at the B end is far more usable but can be a hike if changing trains that are at the far end of the A end of station.
 

Snow1964

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Kingston upon Thames
Upper Halliford must be in top 10
Opened in Second World War to serve a factory (British thermostat Company which was making bomb parts)
Second platform only added later
Both platforms narrow, just 2 concrete panels wide
Right next to M3 motorway so always noisy
Virtually no facilities
Negligible seating
Accessible by stairs from the road bridge over the motorway or a path
Virtually no protection from rain
No car park
Have got to go at least 7 stations before you can change trains for somewhere worth visiting

If you look on National Rail website, every single pictogram in the summary is greyed out as not available.
 

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