Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Padge

Why Private is Always Better Than Public.

97 posts in this topic

British Railways was bad...v. bad, and that is based on experience, not on some outdated and discredited Clause 4 mythology. Don't get taken in by claims about East Coast, either. Not comparing like with like.

Used to travel occasionally to and from from Clifton Junction to Salford in the late 50s by slow, dirty, outdated and decrepit stream trainIn 1971 I spent 6 months commuting daily from Farnborough to Waterloo, and in subsequent yeas fairly regularly from Mancheter to Euston. Compare Manchester Piccadilly and Euston of those days with today.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I travelled from Bristol to Leeds last summer, the food ran out after Birmingham.  The train was half an hour late into Leeds, but not to worry the "train manager" told us, they'd make it up between Leeds and Newcastle (the train was travelling from Penzance to Aberdeen)  I could recount several other "advenures" on the privatised railway.  British Rail may have been bad but the private companies are worse.

No they are not.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

?

 

From "At Last the 1948 Show"

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

British Railways was bad...v. bad, and that is based on experience, not on some outdated and discredited Clause 4 mythology. Don't get taken in by claims about East Coast, either. Not comparing like with like.

Used to travel occasionally to and from from Clifton Junction to Salford in the late 50s by slow, dirty, outdated and decrepit stream trainIn 1971 I spent 6 months commuting daily from Farnborough to Waterloo, and in subsequent yeas fairly regularly from Mancheter to Euston. Compare Manchester Piccadilly and Euston of those days with today.

It's called progress. Over time technology improves.

The current model of running the railways is fragmented, extremely wasteful and inefficient. BR in the 80s was rated as one of the most efficient railways in the world, I think only Denmark's was better. BR was also very good at technological development producing the world's fastest diesel train, the HST, which is still going strong and the first tilting train, APT (yes it wasn't that great, but it was pushed into service too soon and if anything suffered from too much new technology in one go). Both of which were developed on a shoestring. The APT tilting mechanism was eventually copied by the Italians and flogged back to us in the shape of the Pendalino.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In some areas the railways have improved massively, St Pancras, Manchester Piccadilly stations for example, some great new trains, HS1, etc, etc.

 

However, prices have shot up, some infrastructure projects are massively behind, some trains are the same as BR days.

 

So I think the experience of the railways is 'mixed'

 

If I go from the magnificent St Pancras, I catch a nice new voyager train to Sheffield, change at the nice station to a good to decent Trans Pennine Express, get off at the great Manchester Piccadilly station, walk or Tram to the dismal Manchester Victoria (they are doing it up), catch an awful Pacer train to Rochdale... and the price has doubled (at least, in 20 years).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The thing with the railways is that the prices have gone up, and up and up year after year above RPI and in some years by shockingly above RPI.  I'd like to see some value for that now please.  When I go to London, I have to sit in ancient old InterCity trains with ratty seats that are years beyond replacement timescales, airconditioning that works perfectly in winter but dies at the first sign of 20C and above, toilets that are more often out of service than in and genuinely filthy interiors.  And that's the first-class carriages.  Standard class is even worse.  The line I'm on invested quite a bit in wifi for the trains but then charge it at usurious rates for standard class.

 

So, what I see for my privatised rail is a real-terms doubling of my fare in a decade to travel on ever more congested ancient trains that have had no investment in them bar things that make more money for the train operator.  Yep, private is far better than public.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No they are not.

You want to provide an objective measure that proves that? You know, customer satisfaction, value for money, that sort of thing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

British Railways was bad...v. bad, and that is based on experience, not on some outdated and discredited Clause 4 mythology. Don't get taken in by claims about East Coast, either. Not comparing like with like.

Used to travel occasionally to and from from Clifton Junction to Salford in the late 50s by slow, dirty, outdated and decrepit stream trainIn 1971 I spent 6 months commuting daily from Farnborough to Waterloo, and in subsequent yeas fairly regularly from Mancheter to Euston. Compare Manchester Piccadilly and Euston of those days with today.

I used to use the East Coast line in the seventies and it was very good.  When GNER held the franchise the service was dreadful.  I never travelled when National Express held the franchise, but I've been twice with East Coast Trains before privatisation and the service was good, the fares reasonable.  East Coast trains were providing a good service and making a profit for the taxpayer  too, which is something neither of their predecessors seemed able to do. What do the Tories do? They can't have this.  All their pet theories disproved. Privatise it ASAP.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Network Rail, a primarily tax payer funded organisation seems to be doing a decent, not great, service.

Operators, by and large heavily criticised, providing a poor to decent service, with ever increasing charges.

Seems the tax payer is getting the raw end of the deal.

My own experiences; West Coast main line with Virgin has been pretty good, expensive, but pretty good. Liverpool to Manchester; chronic lack of carriage provision, certainly pre-8am, to the point of being dangerous. Pretty blood dear too, nine quid for a twenty five minutes journey.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Network Rail, a primarily tax payer funded organisation seems to be doing a decent, not great, service.

Operators, by and large heavily criticised, providing a poor to decent service, with ever increasing charges.

Seems the tax payer is getting the raw end of the deal.

My own experiences; West Coast main line with Virgin has been pretty good, expensive, but pretty good. Liverpool to Manchester; chronic lack of carriage provision, certainly pre-8am, to the point of being dangerous. Pretty blood dear too, nine quid for a twenty five minutes journey.

And now the electrification has been shelved not likely to get much better between Manchester. Leeds and points east.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And now the electrification has been shelved not likely to get much better between Manchester. Leeds and points east.

Yup, and votes at the election bought on the back of the promised electrification and other infrastructure upgrades. Basically election fraud.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yup, and votes at the election bought on the back of the promised electrification and other infrastructure upgrades. Basically election fraud.

Yeah.  We all voted our respective ways on the sole basis of future electrification of the railways!  Election fraud indeed.  OTT comment to say the least.

 

What you miss out in your post is reference to the incompetence of Network Rail, that publically funded organisation, which has been in charge of the electrification project from day one.  Spiralling costs and planned work overshooting its deadlines have caused the electrification programme to be paused (accordingto the government, and not abandoned) because, at the end of the day, it is public money that is going into this programme.  It is absolutely right and proper that the government should question the spending of public money by a publically funded organisation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah.  We all voted our respective ways on the sole basis of future electrification of the railways!  Election fraud indeed.  OTT comment to say the least.

 

What you miss out in your post is reference to the incompetence of Network Rail, that publically funded organisation, which has been in charge of the electrification project from day one.  Spiralling costs and planned work overshooting its deadlines have caused the electrification programme to be paused (accordingto the government, and not abandoned) because, at the end of the day, it is public money that is going into this programme.  It is absolutely right and proper that the government should question the spending of public money by a publically funded organisation.

No what you're missing is that the Tories are using Network Rail as whipping boys to cover the fact that they had no intention of proceeding with the electrification of Manchester - Leeds or Sheffield - St Pancras. But they are proceeding with Paddington - Bristol which runs through some very marginal Tory seats - funny that.  Network Rail are a million times better than Railtrack the legacy of the Major government whose incompetence was responsible for several major accidents. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Conspiracies everywhere .

Infamy Infamy the tories have got it in for us who may have voted labour!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A friend has just moved house, she informed Barclay's Bank that she had changed her address.

 

They sent a thank you letter stating "Thank you for informing of us of your change of address" to her old address.

 

More efficient my arris.

Just to come back on the original post...

 

 

 

They do this as a precaution to guard against deliberate or accidental incorrect address changes. I have recently moved house and all my credit card, bank, pension etc confirmations were sent to both old and new addresses. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just to come back on the original post...

 

 

 

They do this as a precaution to guard against deliberate or accidental incorrect address changes. I have recently moved house and all my credit card, bank, pension etc confirmations were sent to both old and new addresses. 

 

Why not just send a text message, they have the mobile number?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why not just send a text message, they have the mobile number?

Belt & braces?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah.  We all voted our respective ways on the sole basis of future electrification of the railways!  Election fraud indeed.  OTT comment to say the least.

 

What you miss out in your post is reference to the incompetence of Network Rail, that publically funded organisation, which has been in charge of the electrification project from day one.  Spiralling costs and planned work overshooting its deadlines have caused the electrification programme to be paused (accordingto the government, and not abandoned) because, at the end of the day, it is public money that is going into this programme.  It is absolutely right and proper that the government should question the spending of public money by a publically funded organisation.

 

I was being deliberately facetious. However Gideon was being somewhat disingenuous if he knew about the financial situation before the election but held back the decision to shelve the upgrade plans until after the election.

 

Network rail’s problems date back to its predecessor, Railtrack. When it took over the running of the rail infrastructure it made a large number of very experienced managers redundant in the drive for “efficiency” (or penny pinching, depending on your point of view, that eventually lead to the likes of the Hatfield, Potters Bar, Ladbroke Grove etc. disasters), the sort of people they are now struggling to find to run the various upgrade programmes.

 

As I have said many times before I am not against the private sector; I've worked in it all my life, I just don’t think some privatisations are in the best interest of the British public, the railways being one of them. It is far too fragmented and inefficient. For example, every time there is a delay that can be attributed to Network Rail the TOCS involved are entitled to claim financial compensation. What happens however is that Network Rail more often than not will dispute the claim. The result of this is that the TOCS and Network Rail all employ an army of lawyers and accountants to chase and challenge these claims. The whole process takes months to resolve and adds millions to the overall cost of running the railway. On top of all that there is no accountability to the consumers of the service, the passengers, and a major supplier of that service, Network Rail. Likewise, there is no accountability to the passengers from the owners of the rolling stock as this is all owned by a small number of leasing companies. And, as demonstrated by the recent events with Trans Pennine Express, this lack of accountability really doesn't act in the interest of the passenger. Those who seek to defend the rail privatisation shambles often point to the low operating margins posted by the TOCS as some sort of justification. And yes, at 5-10% they are pitifully low. However, their returns are a reflection of the negligible risk these companies are taking. The franchise models are back loaded, meaning that the TOC only pays any appreciable return to the government in the final year or so of a franchise period, therefore, the taxpayer bears the brunt of the financial risk for the majority of the franchise period. They also don't have to take ownership of any assets, the rolling stock being owned by just three UK leasing companies, whose profit margin never comes up in these discussions. The only thing most TOCS "own" is the workforce it employs, and they are shipped from franchise to franchise. The current system really does "socialise the risk and privatise the profit". All this at the same time gobbling up far more in government subsidy than in BR's day while charging the passenger an extortionate amount (an eye watering £309 std return Liverpool - London :O).

 

Then there is the RSP (if you don’t know what the RSP is then I suggest you do some research before continuing this debate, as you obviously really don't know much about the railways or how they work), which again costs the railway system millions of pounds extra each year to administer.

 

And then there’s the "improvement" in service. In the "bad old days" of BR I could catch a direct train from Liverpool to: Southampton, Winchester, Cardiff, Holyhead, Glasgow, Edinburgh, York, Newcastle (off the top of my head, there are probably others) which you can no longer do. Progress hey?

 

So there you have it, less service for more money to both the passenger and taxpayer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just to come back on the original post...

 

 

 

They do this as a precaution to guard against deliberate or accidental incorrect address changes. I have recently moved house and all my credit card, bank, pension etc confirmations were sent to both old and new addresses. 

 

Why not just send a text message, they have the mobile number?

1/ The phone number may not be valid anymore.  There is no compulsion to let your bank know about changes in phone number, although you obviously should.

2/ If a fraudster has accessed the account the could just as easily change the phone number, as the address.  It's a bit more difficult to access the post

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Water. Privatised yet it is a monopoly. Can I change water provider like I do gas and electricity? No. Can I do anything about their persistent increases in charges? No.

That's not even touching the abysmal service we get but cannot change in the other private sector industries because of the nice oligopoly status.

The water industry can't really be compared to gas & electric. They dont 'buy in' water from around the world they have to produce drinking water from the sources available around the UK. The have to maintain & improve the infrastructure and cater for an ever increasing demand from a growing population using only finite local resources.

They also have to deal with all the waste we produce. They cant just bag it up and sell it on to some overseas company and they can't just dump it in the ground or in the sea (not any more anyway) because of the environmental laws.

 

I agree completely that we're being ripped off massively by the gas & electricity companies but what you actually get for your money with water is actually pretty good value for money.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The water industry can't really be compared to gas & electric. They dont 'buy in' water from around the world they have to produce drinking water from the sources available around the UK. The have to maintain & improve the infrastructure and cater for an ever increasing demand from a growing population using only finite local resources.

They also have to deal with all the waste we produce. They cant just bag it up and sell it on to some overseas company and they can't just dump it in the ground or in the sea (not any more anyway) because of the environmental laws.

 

 

 

All this is true.  And they are the reasons why water and sewage should never have been privatised  in the first place.  But of course these arguments were ridden over rough shod by the arrogant Thatcherites.  I recall them saying that just because water falls from the sky free doesn't mean that someone shouldn't charge for managing it.  Well IIRC when the water stopped falling out of the sky in 1995 several of the water companies including and especially Yorkshire Water found themselves up a certain creek without a paddle. t appeared they hadn't been managing it very well, whilst of course still taking a fat profit.  They've had to invest hugely and of course who's picked up the bill for that investment?  The rest of us who don't get to share the profits. The same argument applies to Railtrack.  They were raking it in until it turned out they weren't spending enough maintaining the railway to keep us safe.

Edited by Trojan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No what you're missing is that the Tories are using Network Rail as whipping boys to cover the fact that they had no intention of proceeding with the electrification of Manchester - Leeds or Sheffield - St Pancras. But they are proceeding with Paddington - Bristol which runs through some very marginal Tory seats - funny that.  Network Rail are a million times better than Railtrack the legacy of the Major government whose incompetence was responsible for several major accidents. 

Network Rail record in terms of competence or efficiency is no better Railtrack. Essentially NetworkRail took over the improvements to the system made by Railtrack. Disruption to services due to maintenance work regualrly over runs causing problems on Mondays mornings on a regular basis. Take a look at the safety record of Network rail, it is marginally better than Railtrack. In terms of being a million times better anybody who truly believes that is deluded or lying.

 

If you want to see the level of competence of NetworkRail take a look at what happened there was a significant amount snow, the rail system almost ground to halt, the situation was in your own words  relating to NetworlRail' whose incompetence was responsible'. The areas worst affected were not even the same regions with the worst weather conditions. Then there was the situation relating to the upgrades around Liverpool Street Station that resulted in trains not being able to enter the station during rush hour and the police were called in to control crowds of people due to it being a significant safety issue. Incidents like this happen regularly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Network Rail record in terms of competence or efficiency is no better Railtrack. Essentially NetworkRail took over the improvements to the system made by Railtrack. Disruption to services due to maintenance work regualrly over runs causing problems on Mondays mornings on a regular basis. Take a look at the safety record of Network rail, it is marginally better than Railtrack. In terms of being a million times better anybody who truly believes that is deluded or lying.

 

If you want to see the level of competence of NetworkRail take a look at what happened there was a significant amount snow, the rail system almost ground to halt, the situation was in your own words  relating to NetworlRail' whose incompetence was responsible'. The areas worst affected were not even the same regions with the worst weather conditions. Then there was the situation relating to the upgrades around Liverpool Street Station that resulted in trains not being able to enter the station during rush hour and the police were called in to control crowds of people due to it being a significant safety issue. Incidents like this happen regularly.

 

Rail Privatisation: Timeline of Failures

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.



League Express - Mon 10th April 2017

Rugby League World - April 2017