|Archived Save the Train forum articles - 2005 to 2010. See below
First Capital Connect Complaints Soar - 942/2646
Written by Lee on Friday, 29th December 2006
Complaints from passengers have spiralled since First Capital Connect took over the rail service between Bedford and Brighton in April (link below.)
After FCC introduced new restrictions on the use of cheap day return tickets during the evening peak , the number of complaints almost tripled to 254 per 100,000 passenger journeys.
Association of Public Transport Users spokesperson Adrian Jackson-Robins , who lives in Harpenden and commutes to London , said: "The restrictions might have made commercial sense for the company but it was a public relations disaster that motivated a vociferous body of people to complain."
He added: "There have been a series of disastrous days on the line which have also generated a large number of complaints, but in fairness to FCC most of these problems have not been of their making. They have been down to Network Rail."
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Save the Train was the campaign to bring an approriate train service back to and through Melksham.
Most big contributors are still around writing at the Coffee shop forum where new members are very welcome.
The train has been saved - sort of - we have stepped back up from an unusable service to a poorish one but it's doing very well. We did that through setting up the TransWilts Community Rail Partnership. That fulfilled its early objectives; it has been taken over by local and regional government types who are now doing medium and long term work. The team from this forun can also be found at the Melksham Rail User Group (which was the Melksham Rail Development Group at the time these articles were written and we had no users.
We mustn't loose sight, though, that the train service remains poor and needs our community support in marketing and campaigning to keep it going in a positive direction ... and all the more so when we're expecting to find a different normallity once we get out of the Coronavirus Pandemic and head for zero carbon via the climate crisis. Yes, it's saved ... it's now a key community facility ... the need for enhancement and the strong and near-universal local support remain, and the rail industry and goverment remain slow to move and provide the enhancements even to level us up with other towns. Please support the Melksham Rail User Group - now very much in partnership rather than protest with the rail industry and local government, including GWR, TransWilts and unitary and town councils. And please use the trains and buses, and cycle and walk when you can.
-- Graham Ellis, (webmaster), February 2021
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