Taking cycles on non-reservable trains

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Davidwd
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Taking cycles on non-reservable trains

Postby Davidwd » 2 May 2017, 8:56am

I am taking my bike to Harwich and then on to the Hook of Holland.

I booked the ticket with trainline and then rang to reserve my bike space and was told this. The first part of the journey to stowmarket is non reservable, the 2nd part of the journey - the bike space is already reserved. the 3rd part of the journey to harwich is non reservable.

What usually happens in this situation, will the station staff get me on the train or flatly refuse me? Has anyone had a bad experience with this?

Thank you
David

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NUKe
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Re: Taking cycles on non-reservable trains

Postby NUKe » 2 May 2017, 9:57am

Do you have to take particular trains or is your ticket flexible ? If you have to be on a particular train I would be wary, that said I would say if you are off peak no one will mind. If you are trying to take a fully loaded tourer on the morning rush hour you may have problems.
Anglia services tend to be fairly flexible With bikes, I have gone Felixstowe to Manning tree (where the Harwich train leaves from) via Ipswich many times without booking.

On Saturday myself and my daughter went to Cambridge the train home was very crowded but there were several bikes on the train and no one seemed to mind and these were just ordinary people going a couple of stops.
Edited for Spoiling mistakes
Last edited by NUKe on 2 May 2017, 2:15pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Davidwd
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Re: Taking cycles on non-reservable trains

Postby Davidwd » 2 May 2017, 10:11am

Thank you

I am going to take an earlier train so i will have 4 hours flexibility - just in case

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mjr
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Re: Taking cycles on non-reservable trains

Postby mjr » 4 May 2017, 5:02pm

Davidwd wrote:I booked the ticket with trainline and then rang to reserve my bike space and was told this. The first part of the journey to stowmarket is non reservable, the 2nd part of the journey - the bike space is already reserved. the 3rd part of the journey to harwich is non reservable.

What usually happens in this situation, will the station staff get me on the train or flatly refuse me? Has anyone had a bad experience with this?

I think it depends on the train crew but the Ipswich-Manningtree leg is nearly all bike-reservation-required trains and I'm not sure whether you mean you have reserved it, or whether someone else already had.

On the non-reservable trains, most train crews will do as much as possible, including removing tables to increase the bike space available on Anglia trains.

If your train to Stowmarket continues to Ipswich (most do), then I think I can ride from there to Harwich in a bit over 2h30 - http://cycle.travel/map/journey/21126 was the route I used. It actually took me 4h20 last year but that was on a three speed with too much kit and included me screwing the headset bumping up a kerb in Manningtree (don't do that with luggage on!), backtracking to avoid a road closure (and stupid signs trying to get us to cycle along the A120 quasi-motorway) and a stop at the other end of Harwich for a coffee and ice cream because we still had time before the ferry boarded.
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millimole
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Re: Taking cycles on non-reservable trains

Postby millimole » 5 May 2017, 9:13am

Ive recently travelled to the Harwich ferry from Peterborough as a non-cyclist and can offer the following observations : Stowmarket > Manningtree train is fairly traditional coach stock - on the train I travelled on there were possibly 8 bikes in various coach ends and a very jovial train crew who were happy to help with the bikes - the train was very lightly loaded; the Manningtree > Harwich train had a lot of bikes on it (possibly 15, maybe 20) - at Manningtree the platform staff initially directed cyclists to specific parts of the train, but gave up as numbers increased.
If you are getting the ferry at Harwich - get very clear instruction on the platform as to where to go, as the usual boarding ramp for pedestrians is out of action (as of 2 weeks ago) and cyclists were being sent to different places with no clear directions.


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mjr
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Re: Taking cycles on non-reservable trains

Postby mjr » 5 May 2017, 10:25am

millimole wrote:If you are getting the ferry at Harwich - get very clear instruction on the platform as to where to go, as the usual boarding ramp for pedestrians is out of action (as of 2 weeks ago) and cyclists were being sent to different places with no clear directions.

That's interesting - last year, we went to the roundabout near the station and into the port that way. I was directed to the right-hand lane alongside the cars, together with the motorcyclists. Rather than using the pedestrian ramp, we then went up and over the ramp to the bridge over the train lines and freight area which returns to quay level in a spiral, as you should see at http://www.instantstreetview.com/@51.94 ... .98p,3.55z
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millimole
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Re: Taking cycles on non-reservable trains

Postby millimole » 6 May 2017, 8:49am

Sorry, I wasn't clear! I was referring to folk getting off the train at HPQ. The rail staff / signposts / Stena staff / previous passengers all had different ideas about where they should be going.
In the end I /think/ cyclists were being escorted up the freight ramp.

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JJF
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Re: Taking cycles on non-reservable trains

Postby JJF » 8 May 2017, 8:47pm

When you get off the train at Harwich International port you go up in the lift to the bridge over the lines. Foot passengers turn north towards the Arrivals/Departures areas. Cyclists turn south to the lift at the end of the bridge. Go down in that lift and exit into the car park. This is the car park for visitors to the station, not for vehicles travelling on the ferry. Go out of that carpark and you will find a roundabout with the usual signs for vehicles entering a port. Go into that car park along with cars, vans and trucks. Check in in the usual manner as part of the vehicle stream.
You can find a map of the station on the National Rail website.

millimole
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Taking cycles on non-reservable trains

Postby millimole » 9 May 2017, 8:37am

JJF wrote:When you get off the train at Harwich International port you go up in the lift to the bridge over the lines. Foot passengers turn north towards the Arrivals/Departures areas. Cyclists turn south to the lift at the end of the bridge. Go down in that lift and exit into the car park. This is the car park for visitors to the station, not for vehicles travelling on the ferry. Go out of that carpark and you will find a roundabout with the usual signs for vehicles entering a port. Go into that car park along with cars, vans and trucks. Check in in the usual manner as part of the vehicle stream.
You can find a map of the station on the National Rail website.

This is what might have been the source of confusion when we travelled a fortnight or so ago. There is an issue with the pedestrian footbridge - cyclists were not being directed {quote}to turn south to the lift at the end of the bridge {end quite} I didn't see any signs, and there were quite a few confused cyclists. Your instructions appear clear and helpful.


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Davidwd
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Re: Taking cycles on non-reservable trains

Postby Davidwd » 9 May 2017, 7:00pm

Just to give you all a quick update, I took my bike from peterborough to harwich international via ipswich then manningtree, don't get off at stowmarket go all the way ipswich and come back to manningtree, it doesn't mater if it doesn't show it like that on your ticket all the staff I encountered were more than helpful.

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mjr
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Re: Taking cycles on non-reservable trains

Postby mjr » 9 May 2017, 9:29pm

The reason the route planners say to change at Stowmarket is it's normally a same-platform change, whereas Ipswich is a busier station and a cross-bridge change towards Manningtree. There aren't many (any?) trains from Ipswich to Manningtree that don't call at Stowmarket first.
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