This is what gets the current rail system a bad name

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norbitonflyer

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I've had this happen to me way back in BR days so sadly it's nothing new.
The most egregious example I had was at Newark - an East Coast train shutting its doors in the faces of passengers piling off the connection from Lincoln, which had been standing room only. Of course, it's no skin of the onward connecting company's nose if the result is a hundred delay repay claims - that affects the operator of the incoming service, even though given the relative distances involved they probably only received 10% of the revenue from the tickets, but had to refund 50 or 100%.
 
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Having spent the last 7-hours on a Inverness to Kings Cross service with just under an hour left to run, these are mine.

• 5-minutes of announcements before the journeys even begun of what seemed like LNERs terms and conditions.

• Inconsistency between operators, i.e. LNER shop shut 50-minutes for crew change, Avanti usually only about 20 or less.

• Rubbish seat / window alignment. 7-hours next to a pillow is not good.

• Half-baked attempts at technology, such as an at seat ordering system which is hit and miss if it will work or not.

• No facilities to pick a specific seat when booking in most instances.

• Seats which are uncomfortable on journeys of 3-hours or more.

This is the last I want to see of a train for a while.
So, coach C is always unreserved, so plenty of choice for a seat of choice, certainly of starting from Inverness.

Book via LNER website, you can choose your own seat, wether booking via website or app.
Even if you book your tickets with another operator you can still make a seat reservation via the LNER app.

I’ve used let’s eat at your seat in every train of lners I use, out of about 50 trips, it’s not worked about 5-6 times, order delivered bewitching 2-5 minutes on average.

I just pulled into Seamer from Bridlington running around 5 mins late. The York train was in platform, and the guard of the York train closed the doors just as two passengers were trying to board from our train. Would it have hurt to delay for 30 seconds? Passengers now face a 1 hour wait on a platform with no facilities.

Edit having got some more time:

BTW for those that don't know it Seamer is a single narrow island platform with just a couple of shelters, and its less than 10 steps from carriage door to carriage door. Guard on the York train was aware of what was happening, I was watching him, and potential passengers were 10yds or less away from him and were obviously hoping to board, if he couldn't see them then he should be registered blind. He just totally ignored them and closed the doors. Seemed to me like he just didn't care. My mother always told me don't care will be made to care but in this case I don't hold out much hope.
To me, the TPE closing doors whilst customers are making there way towards its is an unsafe act, as the passenger train interface is compromised.
Purely from a safety point of view, he should of held his train and allowed the northern trains customers to board.
 

MotCO

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As I read a journey with 15 or more stops has an extra 1 min for stragglers who can't get out of bed/need that coffee/caught in traffic* equals 15 mins late at destination, and out come the masses claiming delay-repay, traincrew get a please explain, the whole world and his dog complain that this service is always late. and don't get me started on pathing/connections etc.
All because someone cannot haul their derriere to the station on time

*delete as appropriate

But if the train waited at one station for 1 minute, it would be late throughout by 1 minute which would give the stragglers time to catch the train. Otherwise, in your example, the stragglers could be 15 minutes late at the last station and still catch the train.
 

Grumpy Git

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Can't speak for their employer but at mine if I am over my time by 30 or more seconds I have to justify that, and holding for transferring passengers won't be accepted. My personal feelings aside I do what I'm told by the person signing my wages off!

"Computer says no................"
 

rg177

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I've had this at Castle Cary before, where a Weymouth service had a booked dwell on the opposite side of the island platform to await the ex-London service. We were about six minutes late.

Naturally, the guard watched the doors release on our train, then started the door closing procedure on his train immediately, leaving everyone behind. Even more infuriatingly, that service actually had a booked dwell of about eight minutes at Yeovil Pen Mill!

I get that trains can't wait for every late connection, but when the timetable seems to have been designed for that connection, with a fairly infrequent service, its very poor.
 

physics34

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I just pulled into Seamer from Bridlington running around 5 mins late. The York train was in platform, and the guard of the York train closed the doors just as two passengers were trying to board from our train. Would it have hurt to delay for 30 seconds? Passengers now face a 1 hour wait on a platform with no facilities.

Edit having got some more time:

BTW for those that don't know it Seamer is a single narrow island platform with just a couple of shelters, and its less than 10 steps from carriage door to carriage door. Guard on the York train was aware of what was happening, I was watching him, and potential passengers were 10yds or less away from him and were obviously hoping to board, if he couldn't see them then he should be registered blind. He just totally ignored them and closed the doors. Seemed to me like he just didn't care. My mother always told me don't care will be made to care but in this case I don't hold out much hope.
Customer service, (the customer is always right), is a general problem in the UK over many sectors. We just dont have the mentally for it. Would be a better society if we did.
 

yorkie

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...Book via LNER website, you can choose your own seat, wether booking via website or app...
Or book through Trainsplit and you can choose your seat on all reserveable trains (not just LNER) and it may save money too.

Customer service, (the customer is always right), is a general problem in the UK over many sectors. We just dont have the mentally for it. Would be a better society if we did.
This is true, but the rail industry is particularly bad. You notice it more when you go to somewhere like Switzerland.

I've had this at Castle Cary before, where a Weymouth service had a booked dwell on the opposite side of the island platform to await the ex-London service. We were about six minutes late.

Naturally, the guard watched the doors release on our train, then started the door closing procedure on his train immediately, leaving everyone behind. Even more infuriatingly, that service actually had a booked dwell of about eight minutes at Yeovil Pen Mill!

I get that trains can't wait for every late connection, but when the timetable seems to have been designed for that connection, with a fairly infrequent service, its very poor.
Yep, for many train companies the priority is very much to depart on time (or early) with no regard for customers and no consideration that slack/recovery/pathing time may be available further down the line.
 

physics34

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Or book through Trainsplit and you can choose your seat on all reserveable trains (not just LNER) and it may save money too.


This is true, but the rail industry is particularly bad. You notice it more when you go to somewhere like Switzerland.


Yep, for many train companies the priority is very much to depart on time (or early) with no regard for customers and no consideration that slack/recovery/pathing time may be available further down the line.
Employers have got to pay a little bit more and be much more selective in the recruitment process. You are right about Switzerland.
 

mmh

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But if the train waited at one station for 1 minute, it would be late throughout by 1 minute which would give the stragglers time to catch the train. Otherwise, in your example, the stragglers could be 15 minutes late at the last station and still catch the train.
People aren't asking for trains to wait for "stragglers" at every stop, they're asking them to wait briefly for people connecting.
 

Ken H

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...

Yep, for many train companies the priority is very much to depart on time (or early) with no regard for customers and no consideration that slack/recovery/pathing time may be available further down the line.
And so we have people avoiding using trains unless there is a through service. To me the point of a railway is its a web of interconnecting services. If its going to be a lottery as to whether you make connections then thats a massive disincentive to train travel.
Poor connection policy is also a reason why people want through trains from everywhere to everywhere, so we have situations like the through platforms at manchester piccadilly because Greater Puddlewick on Sea needs a through train to the airport, because a connection wont do.
 

Scott1

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People aren't asking for trains to wait for "stragglers" at every stop, they're asking them to wait briefly for people connecting.
Hmm, you have to be careful with that though. The people wanting the connection are asking for that, the people already on the train want to leave on time. Some people are happy to wait a few minutes for a late train, others are not.
 

MotCO

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People aren't asking for trains to wait for "stragglers" at every stop, they're asking them to wait briefly for people connecting.

I think we're on the same side. I was trying to argue against @berwicksfinest (obviously unsuccessfully :frown:) that a train waiting one minute for stragglers would not be 15 minutes late after 15 stations - it would only be one minute late at the end since the train would already have allowed stragglers to be one minute late at each station against the timetable because it was one minute late leaving the first station.
 

mmh

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Hmm, you have to be careful with that though. The people wanting the connection are asking for that, the people already on the train want to leave on time
The people already on the train think they want to leave on time, but in reality they want to arrive on time.

The railway lets countless people every day think they're being delayed by long stops at stations where they're timetabled, i.e. convenient for the railway. Far less thought is given to the convenience of the passenger.
 

mmh

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Covid proved that the railway runs much smoother when you have no passengers.
Indeed. And it seems to have had an effect on the users, or at least on here. The amount of apologism for rubbish service has gone through the roof. All that matters is "the railway." They can't possibly do it any other way, and if you suggest so, you're anti-railway.

"The railway" used to do, not universally, but many times, consideration for passengers an awful lot better than it does now.
 

Grumpy Git

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I've stood on the platform at Liverpool for what felt like a lifetime when Virgin locked the doors and wouldn't let me board around 2004/5. It really isn't fun.

I had arrived at Lime St to collect my ticket IIRC, and although I assumed I had plenty of time, the queue in what was the Virgin "cabin" on the platform at that time was enormous.

I got a cab home, drove to London and never used a long distance train again for more than 10 years.
 

KeithMcC

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A bit before COVID I had a really annoying example of the same thing. Journey Gatwick to Guildford. GWR service turned short at Redhill, so cancelled from Gatwick. All the passengers duly caught the next Southern train to Redhill, and as the doors opened the GWR train on the other side of the island (which is the service that should have started from Gatwick),closed his doors and departed. At least GWR would be on the hook for all the 1 hour delay repay claims as they cancelled the train.
At least there are some pubs near Redhill station!
 

Ken H

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I've stood on the platform at Liverpool for what felt like a lifetime when Virgin locked the doors and wouldn't let me board around 2004/5. It really isn't fun.

I had arrived at Lime St to collect my ticket IIRC, and although I assumed I had plenty of time, the queue in what was the Virgin "cabin" on the platform at that time was enormous.

I got a cab home, drove to London and never used a long distance train again for more than 10 years.
So how many or those passengers on the platform thought the same as you, and are lost to the railway????
 

waverley47

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Say you did delay that York train at Seamer.

Granted, a handful of people now make their connection. That train might arrive late into York.

What about all the people who then go on to kiss their connection onto XC for the west country. Say you delay that train as well, for the passengers of the now delayed TPE.

That XC now misses its path through Leeds, or the busy NE-SW corridor at Sheffield.

How many people miss their connections later along the journey.....

It's a timetable for a reason.

You can't just delay trains for every possible connection, because you end up in a scenario where you dispatch long distance trains from London once an hour, with a destination in mind, and they get there when they get there.

OP's point about this particular connection was that it inconvenienced the OP. Admittedly regrettable, but the solution is to tweak the timetable to allow more time for such connections, not to hold trains. If and when GBR spools up in England, that would be the focus. The flip side is that there are very few stations around the country where such connection times could be tweaked easily.

Most of the UK rail network is much, much busier in terms of trains per track per hour than on the continent, and decades of infrastructure underprovision mean that there isnt really the scope to rewrite timetables wholesale to accommodate better connections.
 

pompeyfan

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Although the OP’s example is different, lots are living in fantasy land if you expect traincrew to know every connection for every service. Station staff usually have better things to do if they’re not involved in the dispatch than hanging around platforms trying to maintain connections.
 

lachlan

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Say you did delay that York train at Seamer.

Granted, a handful of people now make their connection. That train might arrive late into York.

What about all the people who then go on to kiss their connection onto XC for the west country. Say you delay that train as well, for the passengers of the now delayed TPE.

That XC now misses its path through Leeds, or the busy NE-SW corridor at Sheffield.

How many people miss their connections later along the journey.....

It's a timetable for a reason.

You can't just delay trains for every possible connection, because you end up in a scenario where you dispatch long distance trains from London once an hour, with a destination in mind, and they get there when they get there.

OP's point about this particular connection was that it inconvenienced the OP. Admittedly regrettable, but the solution is to tweak the timetable to allow more time for such connections, not to hold trains. If and when GBR spools up in England, that would be the focus. The flip side is that there are very few stations around the country where such connection times could be tweaked easily.

Most of the UK rail network is much, much busier in terms of trains per track per hour than on the continent, and decades of infrastructure underprovision mean that there isnt really the scope to rewrite timetables wholesale to accommodate better connections.
Seamer to York is timetabled as a 44 minute journey, I'd be surprised if there wasn't 30 seconds of slack in there allowing the train to catch up. If there isn't, there probably should be. Nobody is asking for every train to be held in every case, but here, it seems reasonable to hold the train briefly to allow the connection to be made.
 

earthmover

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Looking at Seamer, the minimum connection time is 5 minutes, a connection for a journey will thus be generated if this is met, tickets printed out showing this as 'your connection'. Seamer is an easy cross platform connection, but once off the train, you have very limited facilities, a basic unheated waiting shelter, real time information, but no toilet, no shops near by, and no staff. I feel sorry for anyone stuck there for an hour.

Like any line that serves a seaside coast, it is used by many passengers unfamiliar with the local train services or facilities. These are often people with young children, the elderly, and often with luggage. Coastal towns need all the trade they can get, they are often the ones in most need of 'levelling up' Happy holiday makers are likely to come back, and support the local economy.

Unfortunately, travelling from the Hull line to connect with trains going towards York, the arrival/departure time is mostly 5 minutes, (though some, strangely, have no connection as the Northern Train is due to arrive with just 4 minutes to the next TPE service.)

The TPE service used to be a long distance Trans Pennine Service, most trains going to and from Liverpool, with all the network pinch points that entails, so fully understandable that a train cannot wait even 30 seconds longer. But for a couple of years now, most Scarborough trains only go to York.

While the new May 2022 timetable is not in the journey planner, real time trains data for June 2022 Monday to Saturday currently is not showing this changing.

One benefit of TPE only running a York-Scarborough shuttle could be a it gives those who are in charge, these days mostly the Department for Transport? the option to empower staff on both services with permission to wait and work together, if they can see that both trains are going to be in Seamer station at the same time. This would be good for everyone's health and well being.

For most passengers if they see the TPE train they will aim to cross the platform to board it. Make it, they are grateful, they will thank the staff. If it leaves, especially with young family or an elderly couple left facing a shut door, it causes distress for those on the platform and those of a caring nature on the train.

The problem at the moment is the random nature of Seamer regarding connections. I feel sorry for the staff of both companies, it is not easy to even do a PA announcement about if you should say on the train, or get off.

The case raised was the Northern train had arrived from Hull, it was timed for the minimum connection time, it was 4 minutes late as show on real time train. So the trains are both in the station, side by side with just a thin platform between them. Passengers got off, and within that 30 seconds, both trains would have left, and they would then have an hours wait.

What would make the connection more passenger friendly is for the long awaited York- Scarborough shuttle train to be introduced, to provide a service every 30 minutes. Now that would be a game changer.

In the interim, a clear policy for Seamer and onward connections, would help all concerned.
 

waverley47

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Seamer to York is timetabled as a 44 minute journey, I'd be surprised if there wasn't 30 seconds of slack in there allowing the train to catch up. If there isn't, there probably should be. Nobody is asking for every train to be held in every case, but here, it seems reasonable to hold the train briefly to allow the connection to be made.

The problem is, OP is using this particular example to suggest that all trains should be held to allow onward connections, if it falls into an arbitrary time limit.

Now, in this situation, the case is moot. The Scarborough shuttle should have slack. However, while in this situation the missed connection was regrettable, it's not in any way helpful to suggest that this situation is similar to any other connections.

Yes, this particular connection may well have been held after a rules change to avoid penalising train staff for using their discretion, however, that's a counterfactual, and impossible to prove. This sort of thing can only be decisively improved with a timetable change.
 

SCDR_WMR

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Could you also clarify the "5-minute on-time rule"? (Are you, perhaps, confusing the Public Performance Measure (PPM) with Delay Attribution?)

I thought that Malton only had a single platform, so is effectively a single track bottleneck, and there is also a short section of single line on the approach to York station.

There are also, presumably, many further 'connections' at York.
As far as I'm aware, this metric of PPM has been removed, certainly has for Abellio TOCs - which are now judged on 3 minute delays. Whereas before it was how late into terminating station, it is now how many minutes over 3 late at each station so adds up far quicker.

This has definitely lead to a more minute-busting attitude.
It's also very common for staff to not know what train is due when, and when the next one is. Especially for another TOC.
 

david1212

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Where is this officially stated?

It is not - I was simply implying that it ought to be.

Could you also clarify the "5-minute on-time rule"? (Are you, perhaps, confusing the Public Performance Measure (PPM) with Delay Attribution?)

I thought generally shorter distance trains were classed as on time if no more than 4 min 59 sec late and for longer distance trains 9 min 59 sec. While on-time is the objective IMO good customer service should be more important than ' box ticking '.

I thought that Malton only had a single platform, so is effectively a single track bottleneck, and there is also a short section of single line on the approach to York station.

There are also, presumably, many further 'connections' at York.

In this specific case departing Seamer just one minute later would have sufficed with the reasonable presumption that by the time the train is approaching York the time has been made up.


Taking a wider sweep I wonder the situation if a train departed Scarborough 5 minutes late for a reason totally caused by TPE.
If still a full 5 minutes late at Malton would this cause a delay to a Scarborough bound service ? If so that would be bad timetable planning.

Indeed there will be connections at York.
Generally the only way to run a reliable service is to have some slack. Of course there has to be a balance as to how much but specific to this route a 5 minute late departure from York or Seamer if not eliminated should at least be reduced approaching York. If the same train goes onwards to Manchester with slick platform work departure if not right time ought to be very close to this - close enough to run in the booked path.

When Chiltern speeded up the timetable punctuality plummeted and two years ago still had not been addressed. IMO being less ambitious so more trains either right time or less than 4min 59s late would be better for attracting customers.

Going forward rail will be far more dependant on discretionary passengers. I suspect the outcome of a survey would show service and connection reliability to be a much higher priority than a journey that is 5% even 10% faster when all the stars align but 50% of the trains run late compared to only 5% with 10% slower timings.
 
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D1537

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So the OP says the connecting passengers were a few seconds (not a few minutes) from boarding the train and the guard ignored them and shut the doors. A guard on that route would have been well aware that they were leaving passengers there for an hour. If I worked in HR for TPE, I would be suggesting to that guard that a customer-facing job was perhaps not for them.
 

Mcr Warrior

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Believe the Scarborough bound service from York will usually be departing the single-platformed Malton station at or around the time the York bound service is booked to depart Seamer. About 18 miles / 18 minutes between Seamer and Malton and (all?) double-tracked.
 

Starmill

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Connections, in general, are not held. If, as a consequence, you're delayed, you're delayed. This includes for the sake of less than one minute. There are exceptions, but they are rare.
 

mlambeuk

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I just pulled into Seamer from Bridlington running around 5 mins late. The York train was in platform, and the guard of the York train closed the doors just as two passengers were trying to board from our train. Would it have hurt to delay for 30 seconds? Passengers now face a 1 hour wait on a platform with no facilities.

Edit having got some more time:

BTW for those that don't know it Seamer is a single narrow island platform with just a couple of shelters, and its less than 10 steps from carriage door to carriage door. Guard on the York train was aware of what was happening, I was watching him, and potential passengers were 10yds or less away from him and were obviously hoping to board, if he couldn't see them then he should be registered blind. He just totally ignored them and closed the doors. Seemed to me like he just didn't care. My mother always told me don't care will be made to care but in this case I don't hold out much hope.
Sounds typical of First group, It happens all the time on local buses, see people running , wait until they're near the door then drive off.
 

trainophile

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Well I've got a trip to Bridlington at the end of the month, and having read this I'm not prepared to take the chance, especially on my return journey (does anyone know whether the reverse connection off TPE onto Northern is subject to the same idiosyncratic frustrations?).

So, having already got an Anytime Short Distance Return between Seamer and Bridlington, I've just purchased an Off Peak Day Return for Seamer to Scarborough. Means I have to leave my hotel an hour earlier than planned, but I'd rather kill a bit of time in Scarborough station and environs than be stuck at Seamer for an hour, should history repeat.
 
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