Background: I needed to get from London to Heathrow in order to catch a plane. This being the day of another tube strike, I decided I should go for Heathrow Connect. I booked my ticket online and opted to collect from the ticket machines at Paddington station. I was told I would have to go to the Heathrow Connect ticket machines. I arrived at Paddington. However, these Heathrow Connect ticket machines were nowhere around. I eventually went to the Heathrow Express ticket office. Explaining my situation, and showing the code that I had taken down earlier, the people there seemed bemused. After some conferring between members, my piece of paper with the code on was stamped along with a request to allow me to travel. This is my "ticket". I got to Heathrow fine, thankfully. Is this normal? Why are there separate ticket machines for each TOC? Is this another problem of our fragmented rail system?