Friday, 14 October 2011

Transport tantrum

I wasn't going to blog this morning, particularly not to complain. But as I find myself standing on yet another full train and without a seat, after already having let one train go, I was more than persuaded.

Why is it our transport service remains to be so bad and other countries - not all I appreciate - are able to create better options for their inhabitants? Constantly you hear people complaining about their journey, how the bus didn't turn up, the train had major delays or never has a seat. Yet at the same time each year you hear of increasing fees. How does that work? If you went to a restaurant that never had your table ready on time, or a bar that always served warm beer when it was Summer, what would happen? You'd stop going there and using their services right? Not so with public transport, we rely on it. On your commute to work you don't really have much option to get to your job in any other way. Clearly, I am speaking here as somebody who works in London, but I am sure most of us are in this position.

In particular, the bus route that served where I lived when at home had to get me to school, college, local jobs and then to the station to get to London. The majority of the time it was late or a bus was just cut out at random. I know people have complained and it is notorious for being a bad service, yet nothing changes. I know it is just as bad/worse as I stupidly bought a property on the same route! It is the 252, just to warn you if you come to Hornchurch at any point.

Similarly the District Line and Jubilee who terminate trains early on the route constantly during rush hour. What sense is there in that. Since starting my job I have been travelling on National Rail, the time the trains get into Liverpool Street has varied considerably since August. I expected it to be busier/slow down when the school holidays finished, but it has continued to take longer ever since. Why? My bus in the morning can turn up anywhere between 750 and 805...helpful. The 'timetable' of our bus doesn't even have set times now, just 'every 10-12minutes', so just turn up when you like really...

When I worked in Canary Wharf, the journey time went from 45 minutes to 1 hour 10 by the time I left. I thought the underground service was improving? And don't get me started on weekend work.

To be fair to TfL, I had problems with buses in Colchester when I was a student, getting home from my weekend job at Sainsbury's was a game of chance as to when I'd get home.

Yet we still all pay and use the service because we have to. The transport companies don't need to change, they have us trapped. So as I escape from my packed-like-a-tin-of-sardines carriage I will finish my rant and look forward to getting a seat on a late train home tonight, albeit likely to be along with someone stinking out the train with greasy food or being ill. Oh well at least I'll get a seat

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