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Questions for Railtrack and WAGN
A number of questions have been raised in the Have Your Say section of this site over the weeks since the Hatfield derailment.
They have now been pulled together on this page and are being forwarded to both Railtrack and West Anglia Great Northern (WAGN) for their comments.
The main questions, set out at the foot of this page, are about the relief buses, the services at Potters Bar station, parking and fears about station closures.
This page has been forwarded to both Railtrack and WAGN.
Since this site has been running representatives from both have been prompt and helpful in dealing with customer concerns.
One recurring concern, raised by Angela Cutler, is the provision of relief buses.
Stories about the incredibly bad service from the rail replacement bus seem to be all too common. Some passengers on Tuesday evening had to wait over an hour for a bus home. WAGN made us stand in the pouring rain in order to queue for the bus. A friend of mine waited one morning for about an hour and a half because all the buses were full going through the village. She now leaves incredibly early to drive to Potters Bar so she can park, where WAGN charge her a further £3.10 for parking everyday on top of the £2500 for the yearly rail ticket. The service is appalling and outrageous. Can we be compensated?
The answer on the compensation question has already been addressed and it is understood that passengers will be compensated - details will be put on this site when they are announced.Angela from Ely wrote in also concerned about compensation.
As an annual season ticket holder travelling each week day from Ely – Kings Cross, I would like to know what in the way of compensation I am going to be offered for the appalling service I am having to endure at present? I am paying over £3,500 for the privilege of getting into work late each morning and never arriving home until after 8pm each night, I am understandably annoyed to say the least. I would also like to know when you will be running the Kings Lynn to Kings cross link again? I have to get a train from Ely to Cambridge, changing onto a train that is travelling slower than I can walk in some places! I do try and understand that there have been a number of problems lately but surely the service you are providing me deserves some explanation? May I also suggest that you give your staff a bit more information, because if I hear “you know as much as me Love” once more …………
Another commuter also raised concerns about the provision of relief buses not being able to handle the demand.
What is the point of a relief bus service made up of vehicles unable to cope with the demand? Being forced to miss one coach at Brookmans Park this morning because it was already full was bad enough, but when the next one rolled up fifteen minutes later, again with no room, questions have to be asked. A season ticket from Brookmans Park is near on £2k. That is too much to pay to stand on the side of the road for more than half an hour. It also happened last night at Potters Bar when the bus left full with many passengers left to wait for another 15 minutes. Surely emergency measures, which these relief services are, should be up to dealing with the emergency? Please forward this mail to the authorities at WAGN and Railtrack.
Another issue, raised by Paul Saffer, is that Potters Bar station exit closes before all commuters return home and this means an extra walk round to the front of the station to queue for buses.
Am I the only one who is seething every time I come home 'late' (i.e. after 7.30) and Potters Bar station is locked. The passengers then have to walk all the way around the outside of the station to the queue in the forecourt for buses to Brookmans Park. This slows the whole process and means the buses wait even longer to depart. Surely SOMEONE at Railtrack realizes that they don't want to annoy passengers even more. How much would it take to keep the station open? It's the little things that count. I would love to find someone at Railtrack to complain to, but all the staff seem to know less than me....
Dr Peter Smith, a commuter on the Hertford North line adds his concerns about the extra cost of his journey and fears for the future of his local station.
Despite the resumption of a 'service' by WAGN between Hertford North and London - Watton-at-Stone still has no rail service. We have to catch a bus - that never seems to arrive for Hertford in the morning or scandalously are expected to travel to Stevenage where we have to pay more. There is now a real fear in the village that WAGN will use this as an excuse to close Watton station permanently.
And then there is the problem of parking. Cleo Conway is concerned that there are not enough spaces and that those that do exist are not being used properly.
The Parking situation at Potters Bar is awful. I have found that if I arrive at PB station car park at 8am all the spaces have been taken. To make things worse they have reduced the number of spaces available at the front of the car park by allocating them to 'Premier permit holders only'. But hardly anyone seems to be parking and paying for one of these 'Premier permits'! What a waste of badly needed spaces!.
And so the questions being forwarded from this site to WAGN and Railtrack are as follows.
Why are the relief bus services inadequate?
Why are there still premier parking places at Potters Bar when many commuters have no choice but to drive there?
Why is the main exit at Potters Bar Station closed before all regular commuters get home?
Is there a plan to eventually close Watton station?
When will the compensation be paid and how much will it be?
The answers to the questions raised on this page will be published on the site when they are received.
If you are still not satisfied you can e-mail both companies directly.
Phil Heath from Railtrack and Susanne Page from WAGN have allowed an e-mail redirect to be set up from this site direct to their offices.
November 20, 2000
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Have Your Say
Are you happy with the state of the station, do you feel WAGN and Railtrack provide a good service? Have your say and contribute directly to this site.