We knew there was going to be teething issues in the first few weeks, but last week was terrible for regular commuters in our area:
- Over crowded trains they weren’t able to board (both in the morning and evening peak). Including running only 8 car trains through London Bridge at 17:21 and 17:51 which were already full by the time they got to London Bridge.
- Trains terminating at East Croydon and being emptied of passengers as the driver hadn’t been trained on the route.
Not to mention plenty of late trains and drivers and onboard supervisors advising that the train is held at a red signal as the line ahead is congested.
The Peak evening Thameslink service (looking at trains between 16:30 and 19:01) ran with a 30% cancellation rate!
If you add to this the number of trains later than 15 mins (which are eligible for Delay Repay) the number of disrupted trains climbs to 57%.
Complete collapse of service on Saturday
There’s so much more we could say about the first week, but we need to turn our attention to Saturday, and the complete collapse of Thameslink south of London with no communication from Thameslink to passengers what so ever.
At time of publishing 100% of Thameslink trains that would call in the Redhill area have been cancelled.
- Horley, Salfords, Earlswood have had no trains to London.
- Redhill has diverted South Eastern services running though to Charing Cross.
- Reigate, Redhill, Merstham have a short Victoria service (4 coaches only).
- The Horsham to London Bridge service is running only between Horsham and Redhill it appears.
And according to the Association of British Commuters on twitter it was known it was going to happen. As railway workers were advised as early as 13:01 on Friday afternoon.
Passengers should be advised there will be mass cancellations this morning. This message was sent out yesterday to all TOC staff who may have to travel on #Thameslink. We demand that passengers are given the same courtesy of honest and regular updates @TLRailUK #RailPlan2020 pic.twitter.com/bfFRQy4mH4
— Association of British Commuters (@ABCommuters) May 26, 2018
This is completely unacceptable. The weekday commute is not the only use of the railway. Many people also work on the weekends, or at the Weekends travel for leisure, and everyone with an annual season ticket is entitled to.
As a rail users association we’ve asked Thameslink what has happened and why there has been no communication to customers. We have yet to see a response.
Over on twitter (at time of publication) there is no information as to why this is the case. When asked they replied with:
“Hi, these are unfortunately cancelled with the short term timetable amendments. My apologies for this. I’d recommend a difference[sic] route (i.e. Metrobus to Gatwick)”
The complete lack of communication is completely unacceptable!
Note – Information on train running and punctuality checked on http://recenttraintimes.co.uk