Keith’s Travel Diary July 2017

A total of 200 minutes delay – Southeastern 78, Thameslink 122. The last few months’ improvements seem to reversed.

Delay Repay Claims; total 1 January to 31 July inclusive = £73.10

Keith is a SRTA member and a regular commuter from Bat & Ball to London via Sevenoaks. Each month he gives his personal experiences and views.

Week of 03 July 2017

Total lateness 61 minutes, Southeastern 48, Thameslink 13

  • Monday 03 July – A bad start to the week. Firstly, Thameslink were running late. The 06.24 to Sevenoaks arrived at Sevenoaks four minutes late at 06.31, the 06.31 to Waterloo East could be seen departing. The next service to Waterloo East at 06.41 departed and unexpectedly stopped at Elmstead Woods. After a few minutes alongside the platform with the doors closed an announcement was made advising passengers that the delay was due to a signal failure at London Bridge. Eventually the train proceeded towards London but stopped at Grove Park. After a delay here arrival at Waterloo East was at 07.58. Fifty-six minutes delay to my journey this morning. However, in London the delays were being blamed on a point failure at Grove Park. Obviously, not everybody was reading from the same page of the excuse manual!
  • Tuesday 04 July – A better day today. The 06.24 from Bat & Ball to Sevenoaks arrived there on time today. The 06.31 departure from Sevenoaks was two minutes early arriving at Waterloo East.

Week of 10 July 2017

Total lateness 92 minutes, Southeastern 9, Thameslink 83

  • Monday 10 July – The 06.24 from Bat & Ball to Sevenoaks arrived there one minute late today. The 06.31 departure from Sevenoaks was one minute early arriving at Waterloo East. The 06.31 was two class 375/9 series units today with 2+3 seating. As usual with these trains on departure from Orpington many preferred to stand rather than attempt to squeeze in to a middle seat of three.
  • Tuesday 11 July – The 06.24 from Bat & Ball to Sevenoaks was two minutes late today. I just managed to cross to platform one as the 06.31 departure from Sevenoaks arrived.
  • Wednesday 12 July – The 06.24 from Bat & Ball to Sevenoaks arrived at Bat & Ball but then sat there held on a red signal because there was no power to platforms three and four at Sevenoaks station therefore there was nowhere for this train to go. After one hour and nine minutes the train proceeded to Sevenoaks. I travelled to Waterloo East on the 07.43 departure which called additionally at Dunton Green and Knockholt this morning. It was four minutes late arriving in London. However, the total delay to my journey was one hour and eighteen minutes. I was advised by a passenger who arrived at Bat & Ball station for the 06.42 departure to Sevenoaks that there was a similar power supply problem at Sevenoaks station yesterday that delayed services after I had travelled.
  • Thursday 13 July – The 06.24 from Bat & Ball to Sevenoaks arrived there on time today. The 06.31 departure from Sevenoaks was one late arriving at Waterloo East. This train was very busy today. People were standing on departure from Sevenoaks and some were sitting on the floor after the Orpington stop. One of the train crew this morning obviously needs to be sent on a station recognition course. Just before we arrived at Waterloo Est he advised the passenger over the PA system that we are now approaching Charing Cross please ensure that you take all your possessions with you when leaving the train!
  • Friday 14 July – The 06.24 from Bat & Ball to Sevenoaks arrived there one minute late today. The 06.31 departure from Sevenoaks was two minutes late arriving at Waterloo East after a prolonged stop at London Bridge. It occurred to me this morning that Thameslink class 319 trains have been displaying for a very long time a fixed message on the train information screens in each coach advising, “New- Improving information … In development”. Will we see it before the last class 319 train is withdrawn and replaced by new class 700 trains.

Week of 17 July 2017

Total lateness 17 minutes, Southeastern 2, Thameslink 15

  • Monday 17 July – The 06.24 from Bat & Ball to Sevenoaks arrived there one minute late today. The 06.31 departure from Sevenoaks was two minutes late arriving at Waterloo East after a delay north of London Bridge.
  • Tuesday 18 July – The 06.24 from Bat & Ball to Sevenoaks arrived there one minute late today. The 06.31 departure from Sevenoaks was two minutes early arriving at Waterloo East. I returned home on the 15.43 from Waterloo East was two minutes early arriving at Sevenoaks. The 16.21 to Bat & Ball was on time. I noticed that a window in the shelter on platform one had been smashed sometime during the day.
  • Thursday 20 July – The 06.24 from Bat & Ball to Sevenoaks arrived there one minute late today. The 06.31 departure from Sevenoaks was on time arriving at Waterloo East. I returned home on the 15.43 from Waterloo East which arrived at Sevenoaks one minute early. The 16.21 to Bat & Ball was two minutes late. The 16.30 service from Sevenoaks to Bat & Ball was cancelled for the second day running.
  • Friday 21 July – My destination is Canterbury today. The 09.42 from Bat & Ball arrived at Sevenoaks one minute late. The 10.00 service to Canterbury West arrived there on time. For reasons unexplained my return ticket with gold card discount would not open the barriers at Canterbury West; it appeared to be a known problem.
  • Saturday 22 July – I am going to Birmingham today. The 07.10 service from Bat & Ball arrived six minutes late at Sevenoaks. The 07.19 from Sevenoaks to London Bridge was on time. A slight delay was experienced waiting for a platform at Birmingham New Street but no other incidents to report about my journey between London and Birmingham. The fare from London Euston to Birmingham New Street and return with Virgin Trains was £4.00 each way for approximately a two hundred and twenty miles round trip. For a forty-four miles round trip from Sevenoaks to Charing Cross Southeastern are charging £12.30 for an off-peak ticket. Are we being ripped off?

Week of 24 July 2017

Total lateness 30 minutes, Southeastern 19, Thameslink 11

  • Monday 24 July – A bad start to the week, the 06.24 from Bat & Ball arrived at Sevenoaks four minutes late at 06.31. Southeastern were not doing much better the 06.31 to Waterloo East had been cancelled, probably due to the earlier signalling problems between Hastings and Tunbridge Wells. I travelled to Waterloo East on the 06.41 which arrived there one minute early at 07.14. A total delay to my journey of twelve minutes.
  • Wednesday 25 July – The 06.24 from Bat & Ball to Sevenoaks arrived there one minute late today. The 06.31 departure from Sevenoaks was one minute early arriving at Waterloo East. The 06.31 departure from Sevenoaks was one minute early arriving at Waterloo East. I returned home on the 15.33 from Waterloo East which was on time at Sevenoaks. The 16.21 to Bat & Ball was five minutes late arriving at Bat & Ball. The next two departures from Sevenoaks for Bat & Ball and beyond were cancelled today.
  • Friday 28 July – My destination is Epping today, then onward on a vintage bus service to North Weald for the Epping & Ongar Railway. I started my journey on the 07.40 departure from Bat & Ball which arrived at Sevenoaks two minutes late. At Sevenoaks, I discovered that Southeastern were having problems, a train had failed at Hildenborough. This was most likely the 07.23 service to Charing Cross. I boarded this train at Sevenoaks at 07.53, it arrived at London Bridge at 08.23, thirty-two minutes late. However, I had intended getting the 07.47 to Cannon Street today which is due there at 08.21. Therefore, I arrived in London about the time I intended to. I walked to Bank Underground station and travelled on The Central Line to Epping.

 


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