London Midland rail services put jobs at risk

Poor train services put jobs at risk

Joanne Ashford, one of the passengers behind the online passenger survey

First published in News Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

London Midland trains has been accused of "putting people’s jobs and livelihoods at risk" after a passenger survey found more than a third of respondents had been in trouble at work due to delays.

More than 300 people took part in an online survey set up by disgruntled passengers from south west Hertfordshire last month.

The findings have prompted users from the area to call for London Midland to publish performance statistics so passengers can see if the service is improving.

Kings Langley resident Joanne Ashford, 29, one of the passengers behind the survey, said: "In a time of austerity, London Midland is putting people’s jobs and livelihoods at risk, and hindering national productivity.

"London Midland made repeated promises to improve their services by 9th December 2012, after Prime Minister David Cameron said the company was on "a warning list" because of its unacceptable service.

"However, our research showed that only 6% of respondents had experienced no delays to their journeys since 9th December 2012."

The survey showed 39 per cent of respondents said their boss had spoken to them about their timekeeping as a result of London Midland delays.

It also revealed that 79 per cent of passengers surveyed felt they did not get value for money for their season ticket and 91 per cent had experienced delays since December 9 when London Midland introduced a new timetable and staffing arrangements.

Miss Ashford added: "As paying passengers, we want to see the performance statistics London Midland is submitting to the government as a result of being on the ‘warning list’, as well as a clear action plan on how they will improve the service.

"We have put up with a poor quality of service for long enough, and now London Midland must be held accountable.

"If they cannot significantly improve the service by Parliamentary Easter recess, we will be lobbying for a franchise review."

London Midland is yet to respond to the survey’s findings.

Comments (7)

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4:54pm Wed 27 Feb 13

Andrew Turpie says...

In the day of remote desktops,virtual private networks, webinars etc, I find it hard to believe that the masses at Watford Junction at rush hour really do need to be in the office everyday to perform their role?

Could it be that corporates do not really entrust the staff to do their day to day tasks at home or could it be that they are holding back in investing in the technology?

Still no excuse for a shyte train service though :D
In the day of remote desktops,virtual private networks, webinars etc, I find it hard to believe that the masses at Watford Junction at rush hour really do need to be in the office everyday to perform their role? Could it be that corporates do not really entrust the staff to do their day to day tasks at home or could it be that they are holding back in investing in the technology? Still no excuse for a shyte train service though :D Andrew Turpie
  • Score: 0

6:36pm Wed 27 Feb 13

JohnnyHornet says...

I have to say, and being totally honest, having been a first class Slater of London Midland throughout 2008/09, I have not been delayed once since August last year, and this being through the driver shortage.
I have to say, and being totally honest, having been a first class Slater of London Midland throughout 2008/09, I have not been delayed once since August last year, and this being through the driver shortage. JohnnyHornet
  • Score: 0

7:34pm Wed 27 Feb 13

Vicar*o*rage says...

Renationalise Tory scum screwed up public transport. Only good Tory is a non elected one
Renationalise Tory scum screwed up public transport. Only good Tory is a non elected one Vicar*o*rage
  • Score: 0

10:19pm Wed 27 Feb 13

E.Coli says...

Vicar*o*rage wrote:
Renationalise Tory scum screwed up public transport. Only good Tory is a non elected one
I suppose that is one way to look at it.What would the labour turds do better ?
[quote][p][bold]Vicar*o*rage[/bold] wrote: Renationalise Tory scum screwed up public transport. Only good Tory is a non elected one[/p][/quote]I suppose that is one way to look at it.What would the labour turds do better ? E.Coli
  • Score: 0

12:36am Thu 28 Feb 13

samwatford says...

@Andrew Turpie
Yahoo recently cancelled its work from home policy for its employees, other companies will follow soon. Also most jobs it is not possible to work from home. Just because you have the priviledge , does not mean everybody else got it as well.
My train is late every morning. Earlier when it snowed , I waited hours on stations due to cancelled London Midland services. Still waiting to get refund for the Delay repayment forms I filled months ago. They employ army of ticket checkers but not check train puntuality or train cancellations(Always say staff shortage , then why London Midland not hire more employees and roster properly) No Trolley service in trains or polite friendly staff like Virgin/Souhern trains
@Andrew Turpie Yahoo recently cancelled its work from home policy for its employees, other companies will follow soon. Also most jobs it is not possible to work from home. Just because you have the priviledge , does not mean everybody else got it as well. My train is late every morning. Earlier when it snowed , I waited hours on stations due to cancelled London Midland services. Still waiting to get refund for the Delay repayment forms I filled months ago. They employ army of ticket checkers but not check train puntuality or train cancellations(Always say staff shortage , then why London Midland not hire more employees and roster properly) No Trolley service in trains or polite friendly staff like Virgin/Souhern trains samwatford
  • Score: 0

7:49am Thu 28 Feb 13

theturpster says...

samwatford wrote:
@Andrew Turpie
Yahoo recently cancelled its work from home policy for its employees, other companies will follow soon. Also most jobs it is not possible to work from home. Just because you have the priviledge , does not mean everybody else got it as well.
My train is late every morning. Earlier when it snowed , I waited hours on stations due to cancelled London Midland services. Still waiting to get refund for the Delay repayment forms I filled months ago. They employ army of ticket checkers but not check train puntuality or train cancellations(Always say staff shortage , then why London Midland not hire more employees and roster properly) No Trolley service in trains or polite friendly staff like Virgin/Souhern trains
Sam, I read about yahoo about 30 mins after my original post lol. I understand that NOT everyone's role will allow for the flexible working, but businesses and employees could benefit from it. Let's say you own a business in London and you employ 200 admin staff, it would pay dividends if you could have staff work 50 per cent of the week remotely at home, introducing "hot-desking". If managed correctly, you could downsize office premises, saving a fortune in renting and furniture. I believe maybe yahoo got the balance wrong.

I run a school network and all our teachers have access to files and folders from home through a secure web browser and VPN access when writing school reports. There is always near on 100% out of hours utilisation judging by file and folder properties. This is most welcome when school is closed, teachers are away on trips etc. All about management and balance i think!
[quote][p][bold]samwatford[/bold] wrote: @Andrew Turpie Yahoo recently cancelled its work from home policy for its employees, other companies will follow soon. Also most jobs it is not possible to work from home. Just because you have the priviledge , does not mean everybody else got it as well. My train is late every morning. Earlier when it snowed , I waited hours on stations due to cancelled London Midland services. Still waiting to get refund for the Delay repayment forms I filled months ago. They employ army of ticket checkers but not check train puntuality or train cancellations(Always say staff shortage , then why London Midland not hire more employees and roster properly) No Trolley service in trains or polite friendly staff like Virgin/Souhern trains[/p][/quote]Sam, I read about yahoo about 30 mins after my original post lol. I understand that NOT everyone's role will allow for the flexible working, but businesses and employees could benefit from it. Let's say you own a business in London and you employ 200 admin staff, it would pay dividends if you could have staff work 50 per cent of the week remotely at home, introducing "hot-desking". If managed correctly, you could downsize office premises, saving a fortune in renting and furniture. I believe maybe yahoo got the balance wrong. I run a school network and all our teachers have access to files and folders from home through a secure web browser and VPN access when writing school reports. There is always near on 100% out of hours utilisation judging by file and folder properties. This is most welcome when school is closed, teachers are away on trips etc. All about management and balance i think! theturpster
  • Score: 0

10:24am Thu 28 Feb 13

Watford Voice of reason says...

As a regular user of London Midland between Watford Junction and Euston, overall I believe that we are blessed with a good, albeit very expensive train service. When the service fails, there is also the alternative of the Metropolitan line (so long as the Watford Met line remains open in future). However, my experience of London Midland recently has not been as good as I have come to expect, especially considering the price paid.
It is well documented that their recent timetables were almost inoperable, due to their driver shortage. A situation they knew about when drafting the schedules. So there has been a negative effect with delays on some services over the last year, particularly during evening rush hours when returning home from London. In recent weeks the service has been under further pressure because of insufficient rolling stock where usual eight carriage trains turn up with half that number resulting in many passengers being unable to board. Passengers at Watford Junction are slightly less affected than those trying to board further down the line at Bushey and Harrow and Wealdstone. It must be a nightmare for them!
One can’t generalise as to the need for the workforce to arrive in time or not. Of course there are some who could work on a flexible basis, but others have a responsibility to be at a particular place at an appointed hour. I for one need to manage a business which is open to the public, so I need to ensure that I am punctual, but I am also understanding, when any of my staff arrive slightly late.
The survey says.…….if 39% of the 300 base stated that they have been spoken to by their boss because of being late, there would appear to be a case to answer, especially as these stats were backed by 91% experiencing delays since early December. London Midland directorate, please take note.
If 79% of my clients said they didn’t get value for their money, I doubt I would be in business for much longer, but then again, I don’t run a monopoly!
As a regular user of London Midland between Watford Junction and Euston, overall I believe that we are blessed with a good, albeit very expensive train service. When the service fails, there is also the alternative of the Metropolitan line (so long as the Watford Met line remains open in future). However, my experience of London Midland recently has not been as good as I have come to expect, especially considering the price paid. It is well documented that their recent timetables were almost inoperable, due to their driver shortage. A situation they knew about when drafting the schedules. So there has been a negative effect with delays on some services over the last year, particularly during evening rush hours when returning home from London. In recent weeks the service has been under further pressure because of insufficient rolling stock where usual eight carriage trains turn up with half that number resulting in many passengers being unable to board. Passengers at Watford Junction are slightly less affected than those trying to board further down the line at Bushey and Harrow and Wealdstone. It must be a nightmare for them! One can’t generalise as to the need for the workforce to arrive in time or not. Of course there are some who could work on a flexible basis, but others have a responsibility to be at a particular place at an appointed hour. I for one need to manage a business which is open to the public, so I need to ensure that I am punctual, but I am also understanding, when any of my staff arrive slightly late. The survey says.…….if 39% of the 300 base stated that they have been spoken to by their boss because of being late, there would appear to be a case to answer, especially as these stats were backed by 91% experiencing delays since early December. London Midland directorate, please take note. If 79% of my clients said they didn’t get value for their money, I doubt I would be in business for much longer, but then again, I don’t run a monopoly! Watford Voice of reason
  • Score: 0

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