Train punctuality rules to be toughened up


One thing that defies everyone's opinion on the British train service is that, for the most part, it is thoroughly rubbish. Trains are overprices, overcrowded and usually late.

So, again, ministers are going to look at our beleaguered railways in an attempt to tighten the whole thing up (invariably making it even worse). One thing that offers vague hope is that long-standing regulations which allow trains to run late are going to be re-examined.

The way things are at the moment, a train can arrive five minutes late (ten minutes late for long-distance journeys), but still be considered 'on time'. This leeway is now looking like its going to be cut.

“Punctuality is very much on my radar and I have been examining this for a number of weeks,” said Norman Baker, the rail minister. “As a Coalition Government we should be determined to drive up performance on the railways. Nothing is off the table.”

A spokesman for Passenger Focus, the consumer watchdog, also called for new rules. "To drive passenger satisfaction higher, the industry should focus on running trains to the timetable – not just at the final destination, but at intermediate stations too. Longer term, the industry needs to move towards a system which reports to passengers whether trains are arriving on time, rather than within five or 10 minutes.”

Of course, this does nothing for the other problems that passengers face, such as cramped carriages and tickets going up by as much as 11 per cent.


  • The B.
    2 things they should consider: 1) If you're paying peak prices then the cancellation/lateness rules should only apply to peak services (and vice versa with off peak), no bolstering peak delays with off peak stats as they do currently. 2) Have a look at the way the lateness is recorded, currently if my train gets into London and then sits outside the station for 10 minutes it's recorded as being "on time" because it's at the station, which frankly is a joke. But let's be honest, whatever the outcome it'll end up with punters pissing more money up the wall either in increased fares or taxpayers forking out to "improve the service".
  • Mary H.
    Or, they could just nuke London? It's full of losers with iPads, and it will save the rest of the nation who don't require the train a fucking fortune!
  • Yer m.
    In Glasgow their favourite trick is to cancel trains that are likely to be late, especially ones that run every 20 minutes anyway. This then doesn't hurt their stats as much.
  • The B.
    @Mary - Yes, because the rest of the country isn't full of losers with iPads, the cunts are everywhere, so by your logic we should nuke the world?
  • Boris
    I heart London.
  • Boris
    Red Ken anus London.
  • Fantastic F.
    London's anus, I remember being in that. Littlest Hobo or something ?
  • Mary H.
    Yeah fuck it, go on then.
  • will
    “As a Coalition Government we should be determined to drive up performance on the railways.” What does this even mean?! "As a Majority Government, we just couldn't give a shit."
  • Sicknote
    I did chuckle last night when I read Southwest Trains punctuality report at Southampton airport; who the fuck are they trying to fool except for themselves?
  • PlatinumPlatypus
    Well, timetables are going to get slowed down then.
  • Chewbacca
    @PlatinumPlatypus You're bang on. All that will happen is that point to point journey time will lengthen, so that trains will always be "early" at their destination if not on time. The general public will lap it up, because the general public are fucking cretins.
  • Fiyero
    I remember the timetable change South West Trains had a few years ago, the gap between the final two stops on the Portsmouth line is about 3 minutes. All of a sudden they had 8 minutes, A train that is 10 minute late leaving the penultimate stop can still be considered on time as it will catch up 5 minutes and only be 5 minutes late (so not late!)
  • NR_is_better_than_first_were
    What a politician read...... Were going to get rid of trains that are late and close local lines that are the main causes of these delays, it will mainly be in the 'North' and not only will it cause less delays to trains in and out of London but will also free up much needed financial resources to improve Central transport links. What a train company read.... If you cant run your train on time, cancel it, then it wont be late it and will help prevent delays on other trains, dont worry about customers they blame me.

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