Monday, 1 February 2010

Voting with their Feet

This morning my first work meeting was very close to London’s Charing Cross station, so I took the old Southeastern trains service from Ramsgate rather than the wonderful new High Speed 1. I was stunned by how few people there were on the train, so I took this picture. I had an empty carriage to myself and did not need to use headphones to listen to podcasts as I worked. It is sad that instead of rejoicing that Thanet now has the fastest and best commuter service in the country; Thanet North MP Roger Gale carps and moans.
Local people are making up their own minds and ignoring him and voting with their feet. With a fast train leaving a quarter of an hour before the train I was on, why catch the slow train? When if you get up 15 minutes earlier you can be in London an hour earlier?


  1. I understand that when there were committee meetings at which the new train timetabling arrangements were discussed Roger Gale was noticeable by absence and didn't attend a single one. It's a bit rich his complaining now when he had his chance to voice concerns formally.

  2. potentially he and his wife were too concerned with his reputation and her job to worry about his constituents

  3. My main concern is for those people who actually need to go to Charing Cross or Waterloo East as this service will get withdrawn or cut down if not used

  4. Mark,

    I used the HST last week, 30 passenger, uncomfortable seats, and a dearth of toilets. Inter City 125's were better.

  5. I used one for the first time today (though not at high speed as I only went to Ashford), & I too was surprised at how few toilets there are.

  6. Anon 15.05 I think you are right, off peak the old service is very attractive with a railcard after 10am it is £13 return as opposed to £20 on the high speed. In peak time though and recognising the incomes of many commuters it is hard to see how the current service will be sustained.

    Ken were you off peak, on the rush hour trains at Ashford the trains are always 70-80% full from my experience.

    Peter there could be mor toilets and as I've mentioned before better provision for bicycles to be carried too.