Tuesday, 3 June 2008

LTW shoots Brian Cooke for backing Boris

***London TravelWatch Announcement***

London TravelWatch confirms that at an Extraordinary Meeting this morning, the London Assembly Transport Committee determined that the Chair of London TravelWatch breached the terms and a condition of his appointment and therefore the appointment has been terminated with immediate effect.

London TravelWatch will issue a further statement shortly.

The voice of London's transport users
2 June 2008

The Fact Compiler is pleased to see that Ken still has some mates left.

LibDems support HS2

***LibDems launch transport plan***

Main proposals include:

* Cutting fuel duty and abolishing VED over the next 10 years and introducing a cost-neutral road user pricing scheme on motorways and trunk roads

* Building a high speed rail network paid for by introducing emissions-linked charges on road freight and internal flights

* Introducing rolling contracts for train operating companies to increase long-term investment and improve services

* Give power to control local bus services back to local authorities

* Introducing a new fund for rural transport

* Giving passengers a stronger voice to improve local transport services through a new passenger watchdog

The Fact Compiler says shame they'll never get the chance to implement them,

Oil's well that ends well

According to the Daily Telegraph airlines are facing a £3bn loss unless oil prices turn. It can't be long before the first TOC squeals to the same tune.

As far as The Fact Compiler is aware only Arriva Cross Country hedged it's diesel costs for the entire life of the franchise.

Others have shorter deals which, if they haven't already, must soon be coming to an end. And with no obvious end to rising oil prices new hedges are getting hard to find.

Meanwhile the sagely head of the OECD claimed today that high oil prices send a clear signal to consumers and firms to curb their use of fuel.

Good news for the Government.

No longer do they need to price down passenger demand - they can just let the market starve the railway of fuel.

And no, electrification is not on the agenda

Kelly rejects "Super-lorries"

***DfT announces that heavier goods vehicles won't be allowed on British roads on either a trial or permanent basis. Cites potential to abstract from railfreight.***

Take a seat - they're all free

When "back to basics" adulterer Major Balls-up decided to unleash the UK's most idiotic privatisation there were romantic hopes that the network would be awash with open access operators.

As Wolmar points out in his latest Rail article this has failed to happen and the three open access operators currently plying their trade are by and large an irrelevance to the big issues facing today's industry.

Indeed there are many who would like to see them disappear so the Fact Compiler is somewhat surprised that they have not sought unity in adversity - where for instance is the Association of Open Access Operators?

Perhaps the reason such an entity doesn't exist is that it would have more members than customers.

Spotted at Leamington Spa this morning were both the "Up" and "Down" early morning services of the splendidly named Wrexham, Shropshire & Marylebone Railway.

Passenger count: ten on the North and twenty on the South bound!

Thank goodness DB has deep pockets!