Posts Tagged ‘london underground’
If you’re flying from Heathrow next week, be aware – members of the RMT are planning to walk out at 3am on April 29th for 48 hours. It’s all down to a fight between the London Underground and the RMT over a so-called ‘toxic’ reorganisation of the workforce, (ie, replacing humans with MACHINES) which could threaten 953 jobs – 200 of which concern Heathrow Express staff.
Heathrow Express are trying to resolve the dispute, but if RMT staff walk out, they reckon they have what it takes to deal with staff shortages and keep trains running. Trying to keep the panic out of his press release, Heathrow Express MD Keith Greenfield said:
‘A strike is not the answer. It will increase costs when we are trying to reduce them, taking us further away from what we need to do to secure our business for the future. However… we have a robust contingency plan that will enable us to run regular trains for as long as any industrial action lasts.’
Meanwhile, the RMT have confirmed a five day tube strike, starting on April 28th until April 30th, then again between May 5th and May 8th.
So if you’re Heathrow bound, you could take the risk that the trains are running. Or you might want to reconsider your plans, or bring a sturdy pair walking boots. Or a skateboard. Or a jetpack. Or just stay in bed until the middle of May – which would be easier.
We need to have this in Britain, MAINTENANT. The Paris Metro has issued 12 commandments of good behaviour on public transport, based on suggestions from the beleaguered public.
Called the ‘Politeness manual for the modern traveller’, the mischievous online guide asks the public not to indulge in various anti-social activities on Le Metro, like playing music, gawping at attractive women, and peeing on the floor.
Of course they do it with typical Parisian flair, using amusing old-fashioned illustrations. And it’s as backhanded and sarcastic as it is charming. It asks passengers to help tourists ‘in Bermuda shirts with a Metro map in one hand and the other hand in their hair’. It also manages to have a dig at tourists trying to pronounce the names of the stations. AW HAW HAW HAW.
Still, it really sets the bar for other global cities to introduce a public transport etiquette guide. The London underground could really use one. Perhaps it could include: no groping, no human interaction, no elbowing, no playing the trombone, no eating tuna sandwiches, no wildly careless applications of bronzer, no farting, no phlegm and no selfies.
Oh, and none of THIS, s’il vous plait.
Six months after it launched in North America, Amazon Coins have been propelled into the UK and German marketplace. Of course, we’ve already got money that works perfectly well, but Amazon clearly felt the need to create their own currency.
Of course, this is a virtual currency and you can use it to buy paid apps and the like, from the Amazon for Android Appstore. That’s if developers buy into the idea.
Obviously, Amazon think it’ll be worth our while, saying: ”For many Indie developers, Coins has accounted for the majority of their revenue since Coins launched in the US.” The company have celebrated the launch by giving away a small amount of virtual-dough to Kindle Fire owners, most of whom will be looking blankly at it, wondering what to do with it. Maybe buy a virtual bookmark?
As for the exchange rate, 400 Amazon Coins is worth £4 according to Amazon. Naturally, Amazon haven’t forgotten about real money as they are looking at moving into the London Underground. Tube users might not be able to get tickets anymore, but they will be able to buy gadgets and whatnot.
As the Underground is closing their ticket offices (so they can go 24 hours), Amazon are looking at moving in. It has been reported that Transport for London are talking to Amazon about converting ticket offices to drop-off points for goods.
Asda has already announced they’re moving into the Tube, so customers can pick up groceries when they’re not at home to take deliveries.
If the High Street is struggling, maybe it should look to moving everything underground, like some Dystopian sci-fi film?
As a reward for sitting in a packed tin can and moving like a sluggish turd through the bowels of London every day, city commuters may soon be able to pick up their shopping at the tube station. Asda are currently talking to Transport for London to install click and collect points at 6 underground station car parks – with a plan to add 1000 more if the scheme takes off.
So you can order your food before noon, and pick it up from 4pm the same day, without having to walk really far with a bunch of bags.
Asda said: ‘Customers in the South East tell us that they want the prices and quality provided by Asda value but they can’t access it easily. This tie-up with TfL solves that. We’ve led the way in click-and-collect by bringing Asda to where customers are rather than expecting them to come to us.’
Click and collect will be available at East Finchley, Harrow and Wealdstone, Highgate, High Barnet, Epping and Stanmore.
But while this is very modern and convenient, there are couple of issues here. What will become of the local shops, who sell you Koka noodles and blue WKD for an extortionate price? Also, why can’t it be a decent supermarket, like Waitrose?
Despite the fact loads of people have died on London’s new bicycle super highway, thanks to it being a long strip of deathly errors, commuters and Londoners have been told that, if they don’t like The Tube, they should cycle or walk.
Instead of trying to improve their services, Transport for London (TfL) are basically saying ‘don’t like it? Tough’.
A TfL spokesman said: “For example if you get the Tube at Clapham North to Stockwell just to transfer to the Victoria Line maybe you could instead walk as it would only take 10 minutes. Or could you start your journey 10 minutes earlier to avoid the crowds?”
Basically, the TfL have kicked off a pilot project, starting today, which hopes to ease commuters’ journeys by telling them to go away. A novel approach. Imagine if all businesses said “we’re going to reduce the number of complaints we get by sticking our fingers in our ears until moaners either give up or die.”
A spokesman from website Commuting Expert chucked their hat in the ring, saying: ”Transport costs are going up and up while salaries stay flat so it is frustrating when the service you’re paying for isn’t the service you’re being recommended to use.”
The Underground is London is tricky enough, but things get a whole load worse when gasping bell-ends get on and start treating it like they’re at home.
Over on Twitter, Chris Smith saw some berk hanging their shirts up, demanding behaviour like this “has to stop”.
Of course, this reminds us of ‘The Worst Woman In The World’ who decided to sprawl out with a book like she was Barbara Cartland. Would any court or jury go against anyone murdering these over-familiar swine?
EE, Vodafone and Virgin all offer WiFi on the London Underground and, not ones to miss a trick, O2 have decided to get on-board with the Tube. If you’re on Three, tough.
O2 have some technical problems to deal with if they want to impress their customers. Virgin have been pulling their hair out over a problem that sees customers’ connection dropping out every time a train enter a tunnel.
Seeing as the Tube is a long network of tunnels filled with trains, that’s a big problem.
Either way, people need to talk this up. Mark Williamson, Head of London Wi-Fi at Virgin Media, said: “Wi-Fi on London Underground has gone from strength to strength and we’re delighted the majority of Londoners are staying connected for no extra cost. Virgin Media’s unique fibre optic network means we deliver unrivalled capacity for next generation digital services both inside and outside the home, meeting the increasing demand for wireless services.”
Virgin will be connecting more stations soon, looking at Acton Town, Baker Street, Bank, Caledonian Road, Earl’s Court, Holland Park, Ladbroke Grove, Maida Vale, Queen’s Park, Shepherd’s Bush, Sloane Square and West Ruislip.
Soon, Londoners will be able to lead their entire life without ever talking to each other.
Journeying on the London Underground is, for the most part, as joyless as it gets, breathing in dead air and flatulence and being ignored by every other scurrying human down there.
And so, someone bring a little sunshine to proceedings is a Tube worker on the Victoria line who toasts like a dancehall MC while doing his announcements.
He says, in the video above: “This train is for all the Brixton crew. Service update, everything irie, everyting cris. Chill out, kick back, no need let anybody cramp your style” before signing off with “Rastaman driver, take these beautiful people to their destination.”
Of course, most miserable Londoners don’t even acknowledge this fine, cheery man. However, he’s becoming something of an online hit thanks to the rest of us who have a vague semblance of heart. Good work that man!
Here’s another enormous boon for EE customers – well the London-based ones anyway. Once the free period of Underground-based wi-fi from Virgin Media comes to an end at the end of the year, you’ll still be able to get the service for gratis, nil, nada etc if you’re part of #TeamEE.
EE tweeted the news yesterday, before deleting it again, suggesting that the official announcement wasn’t supposed to have actually been announced yet. It seems probable that other mobile providers will also hook up with Virgin by the end of the year too.
Meanwhile though, the free tubular wi-fi will be available to all until the end of the year. Well, in the stations that have actually got it that is.
Virgin Media has switched on the free Wi-Fi at four of London’s tube stations ahead of London 2012: The Festival Of Grating Disappointment.
So, if you’re at King’s Cross, Warren Street, Oxford Circus or Green Park, you’ll be able to tweet ‘I’M ON THE TUBE! TWEETING! OMG!’ at everyone until the entire online world blocks you for being a hooting poo-hammock.
Of course, this will roll-out to more stations, 120 in total by the end of the year, with Victoria and Euston going live this weekend.
Neil Berkett, CEO of Virgin Media said: “This is a truly historic moment as we connect millions of Tube passengers to the wonderful world of the internet for the first time ever. Our plans for getting London Underground online were very ambitious from the start and, in less than just three months, we’ve launched a major new service, making London one of the world’s leading connected cities.”
Users will need to register to use the service which will be free to anyone for the summer. After that, it’ll be restricted to Virgin Media customers, while those not on Virgin will have a restricted service, which means you’ll only be able to get live travel news, Time Out, Spotify and MyMovies.net.
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson said: “Our partnership with Virgin Media to make WiFi available on Tube platforms will be of tremendous benefit as building world class connectivity is critical to supporting new businesses and the jobs they create, especially in the high-tech and creative sectors.”
He then fell over a hat-stand and said something that sounded a bit racist.
London, a great sprawling clogged-up lung of dreadfulness, is getting wi-fi down the Tubes. And Oxford Circus, King’s Cross, Liverpool Street and Leicester Square are just some of the first London Underground stations to offer it as Virgin Media revealed the 80 stations that will get the service over the next couple of months.
Wi-fi will be free ’til September, which marks the end of the Paralympic Games. After that, it’ll be offered as a PAYG service.
London Underground director of strategy and service development Gareth Powell said: ‘Our customers will soon be able to connect to the internet for live travel information while they are on the move through stations. Bringing a next generation wi-fi service to one of the world’s oldest underground transport networks is progressing as planned and the forthcoming service is testing well.”
“The first stations include some of our busiest and most well-known destinations and we’re on-track for a successful launch this summer – all delivered at no additional cost to fare payers or taxpayers.”
What an incredibly boring man. Either way, we can all look forward to trying to work out who is looking at filth on their phones during their commute. Our money’s on mucky MPs looking at dog porn.
Virgin Media executive director of broadband Jon James said: “In partnership with TfL, we’ve been working around-the-clock to install and test wi-fi on London Underground and are about to connect some iconic and world famous Tube stations with a wi-fi service London will be proud of.’
An internet tenner on it failing miserably at some point in the near future.
Yes, that’s the same Virgin Media who regularly feature in the upper echelons of our Worst Company Of The Year polls for a myriad of reasons, but we’re sure that this project will run smoothly and we know that you’ll join us in congratulating them.
Virgin Media have said that 80 tube stations will have wi-fi by the summer, with that figure rising to 120 by the end of the year. Initially it will be free, to cover the period of the Olympics and Paralympics, but after that it will become a pay-as-you-go service. We don’t envisage there being any problems there. Oh no.
Also, the wi-fi will only cover ticket offices, escalators and platforms, with no availability in the Underground’s network of dark, spooky, stinking tunnels. Virgin Media’s director of wireless Kevin Baughan told the BBC: “Every wi-fi station you pass through is going to give you the chance to stay connected, by quickly updating Facebook, Twitter, email and the like”. It all sounds FABULOUS.
After something of a successful trial at Charing Cross station, TfL has confirmed that Wi-Fi will be available at 120 stations throughout the Tube network.
The service will only be available on platforms, leaving passengers unable to use the Wi-Fi service when travelling from station to station.
Hands up if you have any faith at all that this will come to fruition?
Of course, the TfL are saying that this will be available before the London 2012 Olympics, but this time last year, the same promise fell apart. Then, the UK’s four main mobile operators didn’t want anything to do with it.
Basically, you’d be a fool to hold your breath.
TfL has yet to announce which company will take responsibility for the service. Gareth Powell, TfL’s director of strategy and service development said: “We are in the final stages of the tender process. London Underground is continuing with preparations to install the necessary infrastructure and is on schedule to complete the project as planned. An announcement of the chosen service provider will be made in early spring, leaving plenty of time for this to be delivered to customers in time for the 2012 Games.”
Yes, yes. How much will it cost?