Unexpected Station Call

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by RichmondCommu, 28 Aug 2015.

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  1. RichmondCommu

    RichmondCommu Established Member

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    G'day everyone,

    At the start of the summer my wife and I were traveling up to Derbyshire from St Pancras one Friday evening when the guard announced that the driver had agreed to stop at Luton to help a passenger. The guard said that it would only be a very brief stop and indeed within a few seconds we were accelerating hard out of Luton.

    Nobody seemed to mind as the Meridians accelerate away very quickly but I'm curious to know how often this happens and indeed what the process is for unexpected / unplanned stops. Given that the train crew appeared to be doing the passenger a good turn I'm assuming here that no one would have got into trouble but I thought it wise not to mention it at the time.

    Your thoughts / experiences would be most welcome.

    Kind regards,

    Richmond Commuter!
     
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  3. yorkie

    yorkie Forum Staff Staff Member Administrator

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    It can and does occasionally happen, but I'm not sure if that question can be answered any more accurately than that as there probably aren't statistics available for it.
     
  4. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    I have experienced an unexpected stop at Bletchley, which was quite useful as I was otherwise going to have to double back from MKC[1]. It was for staff purposes, but as the passenger doors were released I made use of it :)

    [1] Validly, as I held an MKC-Travelcard season precisely for the purpose of allowing that.
     
  5. Traveller54

    Traveller54 Member

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    The other side of the coin, I remember hearing some decades ago about a chap who lived in Cumbernauld and on his way home from the south. The train wasn't scheduled to stop at Cumbernauld and he intended alighting at Stirling and making his way home from there. But for some reason the train did stop at Cumbernauld so he decided to get off. A statio employee shouted "Hey, ye cannae get off, this train disnae stop here!"

    No central control of door locks then.
     
    Last edited: 28 Aug 2015
  6. DanTrainMan185

    DanTrainMan185 Established Member

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    Honestly some people are so bizarre!

    Yes I know it wasn't a scheduled stop but what would he have done, pushed him back on to the train?! An announcement should have been made on the train anyway.
     
  7. plastictaffy

    plastictaffy Member

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    Unfortunately, Maps has stopped.
    More often than not, it's either to get a driver home as he is very close to going over his day and has refused to work overtime, or it's a stop to allow a new driver, Guard or both to get on. I've known it happen there several times. Quite strange to release the doors while doing it though. Usually, the member(s) of traincrew either exit through the cab door or local door. It would usually be an unadvertised stop - I certainly wouldn't tell the punters. Stop, quietly swap, then carry on.
     
  8. LowLevel

    LowLevel Established Member

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    EMT do it frequently. A regular is stops on the Hope Valley for folk who have missed the two hourly connection due to some heavy delay or other elsewhere. I dropped an old boy off at Bamford once with his bike as he joined thinking we were the stopper on a peak Chinley train. Control were fine about it. Mainline services it's less common but does happen.
     
  9. dzug2

    dzug2 Member

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    'A couple of decades ago' I'm not sure that all trains had facilities for announcements - I'd hesitate to say when they became universal
     
  10. al.currie93

    al.currie93 Member

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    I did have a few similar experiences of this during my days commuting to London from Dorking - three or four times the 0731 from Dorking to Waterloo, which is not scheduled to call at Ewell West, Stoneleigh and Motspur Park, stopped at Ewell West and let passengers on. This may have been due to a signal condition though, as it never did this for the other two stations and also occasionally stopped at Ewell West but not unlock the doors - which resulted in some rather disappointed passengers!

    I also remember a Southern train (unusually) scheduled to run fast from Dorking to Sutton stopping at Leatherhead to let a guard off, which is another experience I've had of this.
     
  11. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    The Class 101 sets never had PA of any kind.
     
  12. Minilad

    Minilad Established Member

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    And amazingly enough people managed to get off at the station they wanted to. They went to the buffet to buy food. They took all their personal belongings with them. They kept their ticket to show at the barrier. Who would have believed all that possible
     
  13. CaptainHaddock

    CaptainHaddock Established Member

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    Isn't this what's known in railway circles as a SSO (Special Stop Order)? It generally happens when an earlier stopping service is cancelled and the next one isn't for an hour or two, but needs to be cleared with Control so as not to disrupt the timetable significantly.

    Like most topics, it's been discussed on here before;

    http://www.railforums.co.uk/showthread.php?t=109404
     
  14. Tetchytyke

    Tetchytyke Established Member

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    I've seen East Coast do it before at Newark, when someone accidentally got on the non-stop York train late at night rather than the stopper behind it, and there was no way the passenger could get back from York. I think it's good customer service really.
     
  15. causton

    causton Established Member

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    Saw one stop at Bletchley in the up direction, an ex-Crewe train, unadvertised, (I am guessing as two northbounds to MKC had been cancelled, the driver could not get there in time to pick up the train) but two people ran over and managed to get on as the doors were definitely released, no idea why! Would have ran over myself if I wasn't just going to Leighton Buzzard!
     
  16. Scotty

    Scotty Member

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    I've seen it happen, where the Norwich-Liverpool train has stopped at stations between Grantham and Nottingham, after the Skegness-Nottingham trained failed at Grantham.
     
  17. 455driver

    455driver Veteran Member

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    So delaying every other passenger on the train and possibly putting the connections of dozens of others in jeopardy is good customer service is it!
    Those passengers might disagree with you!
     
  18. Tetchytyke

    Tetchytyke Established Member

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    Well I was one of the delayed passengers as I was off to Newcastle. But it gave me another three minutes to drink my delicious red wine in first class, so I didn't really care ;)
     
  19. glbotu

    glbotu Member

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    I've benefitted from it a few times, when the (then) FCC service at Waterbeach went down (it was hourly), they'd always put SSOs on the XC Birmingham - Stansteds or the GA Norwich - Cambridges.
     
  20. BelleIsle

    BelleIsle Member

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    Virgin do it all the time for North West football teams despite the odd 'incident' en route.
     
  21. Polarbear

    Polarbear Established Member

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    A good few years back, I managed to get stuck at a station on the Spalding - Lincoln line as the last southbound train had been cancelled.

    An alternative route back to Peterborough was organised on my behalf by the local signalman (the box was adjacent to the station) & a stop order was placed on an East Coast train at Newark to allow me to travel via Lincoln.

    Apart from being invited to wait in the 'box (next to a warm fire as contrasted to the freezing conditions outside), I don't think this would happen today as it's more likely a taxi would be summoned!

    This was in the BR era (probably around 1990).
     
  22. londonbridge

    londonbridge Member

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    I had a similar incident one night on the way home from Victoria to Croydon, the train made an unadvertised stop at Selhurst, passenger got off, when challenged he threatened to report the train crew for making an unscheduled stop!
     
  23. greatkingrat

    greatkingrat Established Member

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    I was on a Welwyn GC service, first stop New Southgate that made an unscheduled stop at Harringay. Caused quite a bit of confusion as several people got on assuming it was the Hertford stopper which was following a couple of minutes behind us.
     
  24. thelongestroad

    thelongestroad Member

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    I've had my train stop at a station it wasn't supposed to (on the authority of control, of course) to let some people off who'd been given some duff information and were very very lost.

    Just told the driver it was all approved and let them out a local door. Job done and happy punters.
     
  25. jon0844

    jon0844 Veteran Member

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    Called BTP obviously, requesting urgent assistance to get a passenger back into the station and on to the train!
     
  26. 61653 HTAFC

    61653 HTAFC Established Member

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    Presumably (and no doubt you'll know better than me, being rail staff) if there's a request from a passenger for an additional stop there'll be times when the disruption caused by this would be significant compared to the inconvenience of those making the request, so the request will be refused (e.g. Stopping a Waterloo to Guildford additionally at Berrylands in the evening peak!) and other times when it will have little effect in terms of late running or delay to other services, for example a couple of months ago when the last Huddersfield to Leeds stopper was cancelled on a Sunday, so an Airport to York called additionally at Mirfield, Dewsbury and Batley to avoid Huddersfield becoming a camp-site! Deighton pax were taxied from HUD, other intermediate stops from DEW.
     
  27. 455driver

    455driver Veteran Member

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    Requests wont normally come from passengers, they will come from control especially during disruption.

    Occasionally in very exceptional circumstances a passenger might make a request to the guard who will then ring control if they think it might be viable. Stopping out of course on a mainline would be a no no but on a branch line or secondary route it might be possible.


    Aside-
    I once requested (through the Guard, cheers Chris) a special stop at Clapham jn on the down main when the service was up the wall and knowing that most services were running fast to Woking, Basingstoke etc.
    Just as I rolled in towards CLJ he buzzed me to say yes, so a sharp brake application got the speed down nicely, the platform was rammed, the platform staff had his hands together pleading for me to stop and when I gave him the thumbs up he threw his arms in the air in adulation (it is one of those moments that you had to be there and it will stay with me for ever :lol:), it took 6 minutes to load everyone onto our nearly empty 8 coach 450, there were that many people.

    Everyone was thankful that we had stopped and Chris passed on the passengers thanks when we got back to Guildford.
     
  28. 47271

    47271 Established Member

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    The pre central locking stories here remind me of something which I'm pretty certain I read in the Croydon Advertiser 20 or more years ago. I'm sure that I not making it up.

    A drunk was travelling from Victoria to Croydon one dark night. When the old slam door train got to East Croydon, except it hadn't quite, it was at a signal just north of the station and he was too plastered to tell the difference, he got out and fell on to the track. Amazingly unscathed, he somehow clambered back on board. Convinced that all that he'd done wrong was get out on the wrong side, he repeated the process...

    I can't remember if he reboarded a second time and reached the station as if nothing had happened, or had to be carried away. If it made the local paper he must've needed assistance!
     
  29. 61653 HTAFC

    61653 HTAFC Established Member

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    Apologies in advance for going off-topic, but that was one of the less-obvious risks of slammers. My uncle has recently been researching our family history and uncovered an incident at Penistone involving my (if I remember correctly) great, great, great uncle in the late 19th century. The viaduct at Penistone (from the Huddersfield direction) had recently been rebuilt in stone after the collapse of the original wooden structure. Trains from Huddersfield were often held at a signal on the viaduct awaiting a platform. Due to a heavy fog, my distant relative peered out of the window and mistook the viaduct parapet for the platform edge, so alighted and fell to his death.
     
  30. 47271

    47271 Established Member

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    Actually, having taken us off topic with a old story set in Croydon, I can bring us back on again with my own recent experience of politely forcing unscheduled stops on Scotrail.

    I use Dunkeld & Birnam, which gets more HML calls than say Blair Atholl or Newtonmore, but doesn't quite get the full set like Pitlochry or Kingussie.

    Until a few years ago, the only way to travel to Dunkeld from Glasgow in the early evening was to use the 1740ish from Queen Street to Aberdeen and change on to a similarly timed Edinburgh to Inverness train at Perth. If the Aberdeen train was delayed they would nearly always hold the connection, or at least plan something else.

    Then in (I think) the 2012 timetable they extended the 1811 Queen Street-Perth through to Inverness. Excellent, a direct evening service. The problem was that, presumably with a slip of the pen, they made it skip the Dunkeld stop but no others. In theory this made no difference to me because I could continue with the previous arrangement. However, very quickly I discovered that they no longer held the connection at Perth meaning that I'd either have to wait two hours (er, no), they'd put me in a taxi (first two times it happened, £25 each) or they'd make a special stop just for me (for the rest of the year and until the new timetable).

    Funnily enough the 1811 Glasgow-Inverness is scheduled to stop at Dunkeld now.
     
  31. Welshman

    Welshman Established Member

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    I'm sorry to read about your great[3] uncle, but if you would permit me to wander off the original topic even further - as a young enthusiast I frequently used the trains into Penistone, and knew the frustration of being held at the signal at the end of the viaduct.

    However, it was not awaiting a platform at Penistone, but because the starter at Penistone was right up against the junction of the GC line from Woodhead, that there wasn't sufficient clearance to allow a Huddersfield train into the platform if a GC train from Woodhead to Sheffield was signalled.

    I missed connections to Sheffield Victoria that way if the train from Huddersfield was late - very frustrating!
     
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