Friday, 12 February 2010

Latest ABC figures show circulation remains steady

Most railway trade titles don't submit themselves to the indignity of an ABC circulation audit.

So a bowler tip to those that do.

Here the recently published 2009 circulation figures for the top three (with 2008 figures in brackets):

Railway Magazine 34,715 (35,100)

Steam Railway 32,842 (32,124)

RAIL magazine 20,546 (21,019)

Reports of the Dead Tree Media's demise remain somewhat exaggerated.

After Worst Group - Craptrain!

Telegrammed by Globetrotter
Hot news from across the Channel (if you can get there, qv Eurostar)!

SNCF has finally recognised what its customers think about the standard of its freight services.

Its Transport & Logistics business SNCF Geodis has announced that it is consolidating its international operations under a single brand – Craptrain (shurely shome mistake – Ed)

The new Captrain brand is intended to bring together the former Veolia Cargo operations in Benelux, Germany and Italy with previously-acquired ITL Benelux and SNCF’s own subsidiaries in those markets, plus Freight Europe UK and VFLI Romania.

Within the single brand, there will still be five regional businesses:

  • Captrain Benelux
  • Captrain Deutschland
  • Captrain Italia
  • Captrain Romania
  • Captrain UK
All we need now is some new Napier-engined Class 66s, and we can have Craptrain Deltic!

Eversholt Rail Awards - funniest ever!

Extra-ordinary news from last night's Eversholt (nee HSBC) Rail Business Awards.

There were incredulous gasps when it was announced that Worst Group had won Business of the Year!

As Mary Grant glided onto the stage one hard-nosed operator was heard to spit:

"If First had put as much time into managing their demic franchises as they have obviously spent on making awards submissions they might actually have deserved it."

But the biggest laugh of the evening was reserved for the presentation of an award to FuCC for its communications skills!

No doubt furious Thameslink passengers, shivering on platforms and desperately trying to find out whether the train they're waiting for will actually run, are reassured to know that FuCC has an award winning Internal Comms team.

Talk about adding insult to injury!

Until these industry bunfights actually reflect the experience of the railway's paying customers they are in danger of doing more PR harm than good.

Meanwhile Eversholt must be wishing they'd stuck with their old branding.

Station flasher with fake 'private parts' - Seriously!

This from the Wicked Weaver...

Thought Eye readers might enjoy this from my local paper the Belper News, which appeared in this week's issue:

Is it possible to flash with fake 'private parts'?

Pointless signs - Bristol Parkway

Unfortunately you have to stand in the yellow hatched area in order to read the signs!

Brown out of the broom cupboard!

This video response from Richard Brown to today's Independent Review:

Eurostar's response to the Independent Review can be found here.

UPDATE: This, via Twitter, from cbuchanancubed...

The full independent review on Eurostar snow failure can be found here.

Bombardier loses another senior figure

This from the Derby Insider...

Simon McCloud, Site General Manager and Manufacturing Director is also leaving the company, close on the heels of the President and Engineering Director.

Apparently he is abandoning the transport sector for pastures new in the petrochemical industry.

The workforce are becoming very nervous about the situation and a lot of CVs are being sent out to recruiters.

Customers waiting for delivery of new trains should be even more nervous...

Eurostar - Wrong kind of report!

Good to see Eurostar is committed to openness and transparency.

Click on the button to download the report on the pre Christmas debacle and you are presented with the following:

Apparently communications was one of Eurostar's failings.

No shit Sherlock.

UPDATE: This mediated via The Gruaniad...

"Eurostar must improve the way it communicates with passengers and put in place new systems and practices to achieve that."

Indeed. Perhaps starting with its website...

UPDATE: This just in from the Eurostar Press Office...

Just saw your blog post on the Independent Report response.

We'll be going live with that in the next 30 minutes or so - we're just waiting until the end of the press conference.

I'll send you the details as soon as the site's up.

Hope that's OK.

It is and thank you for responding.

UPDATE: This further update from a Eurostar Press Spokesman...

Just to follow up on my earlier email here are a few more details on the Review and our response, which Eye posted on in December.

You commented on the need for better communications with passengers.

We are extremely sorry for what happened and take the situation very seriously. We’ve already taken action to address many of the Review’s recommendations, and we are committed to implementing all of its recommendations as quickly as possible. Above all we are focused on:

o Improving passenger care in disruption
o Improving communications, and
o Strengthening the resilience of our trains

We’re investing £30 million in improving the resilience of our trains, passenger care and communications.

We are also appointing a Director to implement the recommendations from the Review, as well as working closely with Eurotunnel, to ensure that this never happens again.