Seat Reservations with Cycle spaces

Littgull
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Re: Seat Reservations with Cycle spaces

Postby Littgull » 16 Aug 2018, 10:35am

The only reason the incompetent and greedy privatised train operators don't charge for bike spaces now is that they would be contractually obliged to guarantee the space booked. As it is now, the customer may well have booked and reserved a bike space but the train operator states that they are not obliged to honour it! Total shambles.

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mjr
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Re: Seat Reservations with Cycle spaces

Postby mjr » 16 Aug 2018, 11:42am

LollyKat wrote:
atoz wrote:The fact is that when we had publicly owned railways it was a lot easier for me to travel by train with my bike.


But for a long time you had to pay to take your bike - half the fare (possibly half the child fare) up to a maximum of £3, equivalent to about £30 now. It wasn't until 1977 after a long campaign by the CTC that they were carried free. There had been a trial, I think the year before, when you could send off for free bike tickets. This enabled BR to gauge the level of demand / potential increase in passengers - so many bike tickets were issued that they were persuaded that it would be worthwhile to allow free carriage. For a few years it was fantastic but the gradual demise of guard's vans has spoiled it all and we are getting back to the bad old days.

With hindsight, campaigning for free carriage may have been a tactical error by 1970s CTC because it effectively removed the contract for bike carriage and contributed to the current harmful situation. Campaigning for low fixed-cost bike trip and day tickets like in Benelux may have been a better move.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
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Littgull
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Re: Seat Reservations with Cycle spaces

Postby Littgull » 16 Aug 2018, 12:19pm

Yes, I agree with that mjr. Trouble is, Cycling UK are now totally ineffective in bringing pressure and influence to bear on this very important issue. It's the reason I won't be renewing my membership when it is due in September.

atoz
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Re: Seat Reservations with Cycle spaces

Postby atoz » 17 Aug 2018, 12:47pm

bikepacker wrote:
atoz wrote:but they would say that, wouldn't they?


That is a typical reply of someone who wasn't at the meetings and did not see the evidence. As for the CTC being a radical campaigner, you have more chance of re-nationalising the railways. And as I said; that isn't ever going to happen.


Not all of us have the time to attend meetings voluntarily out of work time. As for evidence- I don't dispute that some passengers don't wnat to see bikes on trains, or that it costs money for the operators to provide space. It also costs money to provide accessible access, and the only reason train companies have started to do this is that the law requires them to. Even then they've had to be dragged through threatened and sometimes actual litigation to do it. Cyclists have no such recourse, as they are not a "protected group".

If Cycling Uk don't effectivly campaign, I don't know who would with any success. But other groups in society have been very effective as pressure groups for change. To be sure, they have been vilified for doing so, but they have been effective.

Finally I am not criticising those who fill up their already busy lives to going to meetings. It's the strategy of national Cycling UK I have problems with.

atoz
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Re: Seat Reservations with Cycle spaces

Postby atoz » 17 Aug 2018, 12:57pm

mjr wrote:
LollyKat wrote:
atoz wrote:The fact is that when we had publicly owned railways it was a lot easier for me to travel by train with my bike.


But for a long time you had to pay to take your bike - half the fare (possibly half the child fare) up to a maximum of £3, equivalent to about £30 now. It wasn't until 1977 after a long campaign by the CTC that they were carried free. There had been a trial, I think the year before, when you could send off for free bike tickets. This enabled BR to gauge the level of demand / potential increase in passengers - so many bike tickets were issued that they were persuaded that it would be worthwhile to allow free carriage. For a few years it was fantastic but the gradual demise of guard's vans has spoiled it all and we are getting back to the bad old days.

With hindsight, campaigning for free carriage may have been a tactical error by 1970s CTC because it effectively removed the contract for bike carriage and contributed to the current harmful situation. Campaigning for low fixed-cost bike trip and day tickets like in Benelux may have been a better move.


Given that the space for bikes was actually parcels space, I wouldn't blame CTC as they weren't to know then that BR would drop out of parcels traffic some years later. That's the reason there is very little space since the demise of the first generation DMUs and rolling stock of that era. This is down to the way railways are managed, which of course is down to the government- quel surprise. I for one am very grateful for being able to take my bike on trains without prebooking back in the late 70's/early 80s, it was really useful. Even now it's really useful when you can manage it eg on services such as Settle Carlisle

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mjr
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Re: Seat Reservations with Cycle spaces

Postby mjr » 17 Aug 2018, 1:17pm

atoz wrote:
mjr wrote:With hindsight, campaigning for free carriage may have been a tactical error by 1970s CTC because it effectively removed the contract for bike carriage and contributed to the current harmful situation. Campaigning for low fixed-cost bike trip and day tickets like in Benelux may have been a better move.


Given that the space for bikes was actually parcels space, I wouldn't blame CTC as they weren't to know then that BR would drop out of parcels traffic some years later. [...]

That's what "with hindsight" was intended to signify. Maybe if bike spaces earned operators some money, they'd be provided more, like in Benelux.
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PRL
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Re: Seat Reservations with Cycle spaces

Postby PRL » 17 Aug 2018, 10:03pm

mjr wrote:
atoz wrote:
mjr wrote:With hindsight, campaigning for free carriage may have been a tactical error by 1970s CTC because it effectively removed the contract for bike carriage and contributed to the current harmful situation. Campaigning for low fixed-cost bike trip and day tickets like in Benelux may have been a better move.


Given that the space for bikes was actually parcels space, I wouldn't blame CTC as they weren't to know then that BR would drop out of parcels traffic some years later. [...]

That's what "with hindsight" was intended to signify. Maybe if bike spaces earned operators some money, they'd be provided more, like in Benelux.


If there is free space on a particular train a cyclist taking a trip to go cycling is an extra fare paying passenger. It is when trains are full that the problem arises - to be economical the cycle space would need to charge as much as passengers displaced - so possibly double fare.

atoz
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Re: Seat Reservations with Cycle spaces

Postby atoz » 21 Aug 2018, 6:04pm

PRL wrote:
mjr wrote:
atoz wrote:
Given that the space for bikes was actually parcels space, I wouldn't blame CTC as they weren't to know then that BR would drop out of parcels traffic some years later. [...]

That's what "with hindsight" was intended to signify. Maybe if bike spaces earned operators some money, they'd be provided more, like in Benelux.


If there is free space on a particular train a cyclist taking a trip to go cycling is an extra fare paying passenger. It is when trains are full that the problem arises - to be economical the cycle space would need to charge as much as passengers displaced - so possibly double fare.


Problem is, because of some DMU space allocated for first class, trains can be full in the rest of the train, but not in first. Saw this today. BR dropped first class on DMUs years ago- it took privatisation for this insanity to return. First class can only be justified on real expresses, not on limited stop commuter trains- which is what eg the Manchester Leeds via Huddersfield service really is- amongst many more. The partitioning off for first on these DMUs means less space for cycles as you're bound to lose some seating doing this. No prices for guessing which company we're talking about here- yes, it's First Transpennine, who insist on bike reservations. No wonder why some of us would like to see a return to public ownership..

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horizon
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Re: Seat Reservations with Cycle spaces

Postby horizon » 21 Aug 2018, 9:34pm

PRL wrote:
If there is free space on a particular train a cyclist taking a trip to go cycling is an extra fare paying passenger. It is when trains are full that the problem arises - to be economical the cycle space would need to charge as much as passengers displaced - so possibly double fare.


Another way of looking at it is that taking the train is only half the journey. When I get back to Cornwall after a trip to London or even nearer I complete the last ten miles by bike - the last train on the branch line is at 7.20 pm (there are no buses). Obviously this saves the train operator the cost of provision. If we extend this to everyone - that is to say, the bicycle completes (or starts) their journey, we can say that what we are providing is the means to get from A - B. Simply going from station to station is of course, except for train spotters, ludicrous; it make sense to the TOC because that is where their interest starts and finishes. We can expand this as well and suggest that the person with the bike is saving parking space, reducing traffic and pollution and reducing their impact on the NHS. Again, none of this is of interest to TOCs.

Now let's take this further: everyone has to get from home to work (let's say). Unless you both live and work at a railway station, you might use another form of transport to start and complete your journey. The best way, I'm sure you will agree, is by bicycle. Not everyone needs or wants to go by bike and bike spaces on trains often remain empty. But for those who do need to go by bike, they are an essential part of the whole trip. If I cannot take my bike, I would have to go by car. If I cannot drive (for any reason) I would be unable to leave Cornwall.

So as soon as you "zoom out", bike spaces on trains aren't a privilege or a luxury or a nuisance, they are part of getting from A - B. And in fact a bonus to society, not just to the person with the bike.
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