Motoring Discussion > Andy McDonald on Today this morning Miscellaneous
Thread Author: bathtub tom Replies: 27

 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - bathtub tom
I was only half listening, but did I really hear labour intend reducing season ticket costs by an average of £1K a year and give free rail transport to under 17s at a cost of £1.5 billion a year?
To be funded by road tax?
He seemed very vague about current, proposed road improvements.

Think I'll go and join the queue at the polling station now.

 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - James T
I think you mean John McDonnell.

 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - Bromptonaut
>> I think you mean John McDonnell.

No, Andy McDonald, Shadow Transport Secretary:

www.thecanary.co/uk/analysis/2019/12/02/bbc-host-tries-to-stitch-up-andy-mcdonald-over-labours-lower-rail-fare-plan-it-goes-badly-wrong/
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - James T
>> >> I think you mean John McDonnell.
>>
>> No, Andy McDonald, Shadow Transport Secretary:
>>
Oops - apologies.
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - neiltoo
Not the lovely Aimi Macdonald then.....

www.google.com/search?q=the+lovely+aimi+macdonald&oq=The+lovely+aim&aqs=chrome.0.0j69i57.10164j0j8&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

8o)
Last edited by: neiltoo on Tue 3 Dec 19 at 14:17
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - Bromptonaut
>> Oops - apologies.

I hear same piece as Bt.

In two minds as to whether it's good or not.

Risk it will be seen as mostly be benefiting the 'well off' South East.
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - James T
It seems a strange policy.

According to the 1828uk website, 930 million rail journeys start or end in London, compared to only 30 million for the whole of Wales and 16 million in the north-east.

This seems to me that city workers will gain the most benefit, paid for by people who live in areas where they cannot take the train to work.

But maybe I'm missing something.
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - Bromptonaut
>> This seems to me that city workers will gain the most benefit, paid for by
>> people who live in areas where they cannot take the train to work.

Or looked at other way:

Most people who commute to London do so in ordinary jobs for ordinary rates of pay and have seen rail fares rise faster than pay over most of last decade.

Not got time to look up figures but Manchester, Birmingham and Leeds have all seen rail commuting grow rapidly over last 30 years or so. Probably same in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Bristol.
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - R.P.
How metrocentric Bromp. Get the rest of the many to subsidise the few.
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - Manatee
>> How metrocentric Bromp. Get the rest of the many to subsidise the few.

There are supposedly about 3m. rail commuters. Probably no easily accessible data on where they live - I'd guess it's mostly around London anyway.

38% of London workers commuted by rail in 2016-17. The figure for "England" was 10%, presumably including London so an assumption plus a a rough calculation suggests that for England excluding London the figure will be no more than 2%. Only the Manchester figure is mentioned specifically at 3%.

www.cbre.co.uk/research-and-reports/our-cities/city-commuting-by-rail

I can't decide how much sense this proposal makes. An annual season ticket from here to London (about a 40 mile drive although that is a bit academic) is £4336 or £5356 with Travelcard. That sounds crippling for anybody on an ordinary wage but is probably still less than using a car, all expenses considered. Never mind parking.

The nub to me is that trains and commuting are really about London. A London solution is needed, it's nothing to do with the vast majority elsewhere.

It wouldn't be the first time politicians have mistaken London for the UK.
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - Bromptonaut
One ex-commuter's tale.

I travelled daily from Northampton to Euston from early 1990 until summer 2012. For most of that time I had an annual ticket bought with an interest free loan from my employer.

At first fares went up annually but I was climbing an incremental pay scale which was revalorised every year when annual increases were agreed between employer and unions. I was also in right place with a couple of promotions and was (eventually) on the lucky side in two pay and grading reviews.

After privatisation fares were, for a while on RPI - and Citizens Charter standards meant the lamentable performance of the then franchisee (Silverlink) was reflected in discounts of 5% at renewal.

Up until 2009 or thereabouts it was a big spend but comfortably affordable.

If got more difficult later as pay freezes of one form or another bit and rail fares were on an RPI plus formula for annual increases. Discounts ended when franchisee got its ducks in a row and the West Coast Line rebuild/re-signalling began to pay off. Furthermore, from July 2010 on the Quango had the sword of Damocles over it on a fraying thread. We were always due to be gone 'in next six to nine months' so annual passes were no longer viable. From 2012 I was allowed to go to a part work at home pattern with less travelling. In event abolition came in August 2013 (mostly 'cos Whitehall didn't understand devolution and Scots/Welsh put spokes in the wheels)

The b******s insisted on further 3 months notice to November before paying redundancy. I did literally nothing except a week or so archiving files.

If still working salary would still be same as 2013 but annual season is £5780 (£481/month in repayments on annual loan).

I guess if I'd had to do it for another 6 years I'd have had to put up with and sacrifice stull I like doing it but I'd have been counting seconds to retirement by now

Last edited by: Bromptonaut on Wed 4 Dec 19 at 14:45
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - James T
>> Most people who commute to London do so in ordinary jobs for ordinary rates of
>> pay and have seen rail fares rise faster than pay over most of last decade....

Ordinary rates of pay are higher in London.

Here are the median rates of pay (I googled median as average/mean will be distorted by the small number of very high earners). www.cityam.com/where-can-you-earn-most-uk-pay-london-much-higher-any-other-part-uk/

But I agree it's complicated - I don't know whether someone working in the south east is better or worse off after housing and travel.
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - Manatee
Good grief have you been out of it 6 years Bromp? I can hardly believe I haven't had a proper job now for over 7 years either.

I could never face commuting, either train or congested driving of an hour or hour. Passed up several jobs solely because I just couldn't stand the thought. Cost me money but I don't regret it.

Now I have up to maybe 15 days a year in the west end or city end with my part-time duties. I can just about stand that although I'm often on my way home before 5pm which helps. I use Wendover-Marylebone on the Chiltern line usually. The service on the Euston line is more frequently disrupted.
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - sooty123
>> It seems a strange policy.
>>
>> According to the 1828uk website, 930 million rail journeys start or end in London, compared
>> to only 30 million for the whole of Wales and 16 million in the north-east.
>
I wonder what that number is in relation to the whole country? It's a lot of journeys going to and from London.
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - Bromptonaut
>> I wonder what that number is in relation to the whole country? It's a lot
>> of journeys going to and from London.

Wikipedia lists entry exit numbers as:

Manchester Group (Pic, Vic, Deansgate and Oxford Rd) 45million

Birmingham (NS, Moor St and Snow Hill) 54million (International will add a few million more?)

Leeds 31 million

Liverpool (Lime St and Central) 32 million.

London will presumably include many millions of short tube journeys in Zones 1/2 but is still massively ahead of rest of country.

Conurbation hubs like Coventry, Liverpool S Parkway, Bradford Stations etc should arguably be added to give totals for Metropolitan Districts if comparing with london.
Last edited by: Bromptonaut on Wed 4 Dec 19 at 10:27
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - devonite
If they plan on utilising car tax to subsidise train fares it makes me wonder what state the roads are to become, especially in Northern rural areas where our roads are already hardly fit for purpose, or how much they plan on increasing vehicle duty to fund the south! - We in the far-ish north west particularly won't get any benefit, along with a lot of other areas.
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - Bromptonaut
>> If they plan on utilising car tax to subsidise train fares

Does anyone know where we are with hypothecation of car tax proceeds to the roads budget?

Although there has been a long standing supposition that there was a 'Roads Fund' the concept was actually abolished before WW2 and car tax just gone into same pot as everything else.

Post coalition there was talk of returning to at least partial hypothecation. I thought that had got lost in post 2017 election/Brexit confusion but McDonald's intervention makes me wonder if it has moved on.

EDIT: This document suggests return to hypothecation in 2020/21:

researchbriefings.files.parliament.uk/documents/SN01482/SN01482.pdf
Last edited by: Bromptonaut on Wed 4 Dec 19 at 12:05
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - sooty123
>> Conurbation hubs like Coventry, Liverpool S Parkway, Bradford Stations etc should arguably be added to
>> give totals for Metropolitan Districts if comparing with london.
>>

I thought it'd be a lot but not quite that big a %. Even if you say half are tube journeys that's still a lot. However I think there's a bit of chicken and egg in all this, there's not the capacity infrastructure for many of those other cities to increase their rail total journeys so that's one of the reasons they are so far behind, amongst others of course. Build it and they will come?
Last edited by: VxFan on Wed 4 Dec 19 at 12:50
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - Bromptonaut
>> Build it and they will come?

I think that is happening already.

I grew up in Guiseley, a suburban village NW of Leeds. It had a station and an hourly train to Leeds run mostly by two car Diesel Multiple Units of 'Modernisation Plan' vintage (ie fifties/sixties). Might have been one or two extras in evening peak. No Sunday service except in Summer. It was better than the bus for shopping in Leeds and of coutrse if connecting to/from London but next to nobody commuted.

Forty years later the line is electrified and service is half hourly but with significant rush hour enhancement (10 minute intervals around 08:00).

Manchester has seen even greater enhancement with the trams and Birmingham has seen Moor St/Snow Hill both returned to significant use.

Ample evidence that if you build they will come.
Last edited by: Bromptonaut on Wed 4 Dec 19 at 12:24
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - R.P.
So what are the figures for the non-rail travelling public i.e. those that maybe take the train once in a very rare mile.
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - No FM2R
This fact sheet is interesting, worth a look and it does have some "per person" statistics...

assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/761352/rail-factsheet-2018.pdf

Also I note that though Anytime and off-peak ticket prices have increased, fairly steadily over the years seemingly not connected to whichever party is currently screwing up the country, advance tickets have dropped by something around 40%. Certainly I've my personal experience confirms that.

I'm not sure of any logic that says the railways should be further subsidised to lower the cost of commuting for some at the expense of others. Seems to me that it should be exactly the other way around; intensive commuters helping fund the railways for the more rural non-commuting public.

After all, packages in London mostly consider the cost of rail travel if they are trying to recruit out of area.

More detailed stuff if you can be a***d....


dataportal.orr.gov.uk/statistics/usage/passenger-rail-usage/

assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/9078/rail-notes-definitions.pdf

www.gov.uk/government/collections/rail-statistics
Last edited by: No FM2R on Wed 4 Dec 19 at 14:08
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - sooty123
Shows how much train travel is dominated by London and the SE i guess. And the obvious flip to that is how little its used elsewhere. I've used the train once this year, in the last five years I bet I've used no more than three times.
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - sooty123
Just out of curiosity, how often do you use the train?
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - Bromptonaut
>> Just out of curiosity, how often do you use the train?

Assume this is a 'survey'!!

Probably half a dozen times a year, mostly to London or Birmingham as they're fast direct services and easier than driving.

Might use it into Liverpool to see The Lad if we're lodged out of town - eg Caravan Club site at Southport.

Very occasionally drive to Banbury or to Wellingborough to access services to South West or to Sheffield.

Happy to use a train, just sit and watch out the window or read. Well aware that for others it's a trial!!
Last edited by: Bromptonaut on Thu 5 Dec 19 at 12:00
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - sooty123
> Assume this is a 'survey'!!
>>

Yes just wondered how often we all use the train.

Well
>> aware that for others it's a trial!!
>>

For regular long(ish) distance travel on your own i can see the general appeal. But for local journeys, for me, instead of the car it's pretty impractical. Nearest bus stop is a 10 minute walk and the closest the bus stop at the other end is to the train station is a 15-20 minute walk, then the train journey. Then the train station in the nearest town, where we do most shopping, is at the opposite end to all the shops, so add another 15 minute walk.
All that vs 15 minutes in the car.
Last edited by: sooty123 on Thu 5 Dec 19 at 12:31
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - Zero
Train use.

Now? its probably 18 times a year, social & leisure trips to London, and some non scheduled services with very obscure traction to places not normally visited by the average train passenger.

In the past I have done 200 days+ a year, all the way back to 1973 when I was typical commuter fodder on BR run slam door trains*.


* A whole generation has lost vital commuting skiils, which carriage door to find a seat next to, how to open a train door/window at speed without mowing down people on the platform, how to depart train at 10mph or more, how to be first through the gate, how to negotiate the back tunnels, gates, door, that have no signs or directions, what platform trains depart from at what time with only a reference to your watch.
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - No FM2R
>> Just out of curiosity, how often do you use the train?

When I'm in the UK, probably two or three times a week, considerably more if I'm working.
 Andy McDonald on Today this morning - commerdriver
>> >> Just out of curiosity, how often do you use the train?
>>
Work wise, it all depends, 1st half of the year, client in Swindon drove sometimes, other times drove 4-5 miles to Maidenhead station and took train.

Now working in Southend done it by train once via London driving, even round m25 northern section is much preferable.
any journeys into central London always drive to Hillingdon then tube rest of journey. have done about a dozen times this year, some work, sone SWMBO and I, some also with 5 year old grandson in tow, he loves it and also enjoyed his trip to Didcot on the 'pointy nose' train to see the steam trains.

I enjoy train travel and will use it whenever it makes sense, with a senior railcard it's not that expensive.
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