Monday, 30 June 2008

Plane crazy

The bids for the IEP were submitted to the DfT today.

Unfortunately Alstom weren't amongst the bidders having pulled the plug on their bid for the Frankenstein Train some months ago.

Which is a shame as Alstom is now looking at producing a freight version of the TGV that would offer companies like UPS and FedEx a rail alternative to their current carbon hungry fleet of planes.

Just as well they're not in the running. With Daft so in hock to the aviation lobby a real rail alternative to airfreight like this would never be allowed to take off.

Happy Mondays

Not a happy Monday for folk arriving on early morning trains into Euston today, many of whom were delayed into the capital (surprise, surprise).

Virgin first class customers will have been even less pleased, since their free at-seat copy of The Times had a lead letter from Network Rail boss Iain Coucher, extolling the wonders of the railway - particularly the punctuality record.

Coucher boasted that "now more than 90 per cent" of train services arrive on time.

As one exasperated passenger put it: "A bloody shame that the remaining 10% all serve Euston!"


The DafT official tasked with masterminding Government electrification policy (or lack there-of) has been discovered moon-lighting as an extra in the Peter Kay comedy series Phoenix Nights.

Spencer, much like DfT electrification policy, is hapless.

Make your mind up

In a shock horror splash across most of the Sundays the Campaign for Better Transport has revealed that walk on fares are err... more expensive than tickets bought in advance.

No shit Sherlock!

As pointed out by Railway Eye only two weeks ago the story could equally well have read "Buy early for best deals" - except that wouldn't have made quite such a good story.

CBT Director Stephen Joseph said "We have to have reasonable walk-on fares or people will walk on straight into their cars."

An interesting point Stephen. But can you suggest how else the railway manage demand for its scarce capacity?

Particularly when your organisation's website lists rail over-crowding as it's primary concern.

The Fact Compiler congratulates CBT for a slick piece of PR which adds precisely nothing to the debate but positions CBT as the master of "Cake and Eat it".