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-   -   Intercity journey experiences (http://www.railusers.ie/forum/showthread.php?t=193)

PLUMB LOCO 07-12-2008 19:03

Yes - Point taken the MkIIs - despite having 1st class compo carriages as part of the train make-up never officially had 1st class accomodation but why should the line not have 1st class?

Second point - as far as I know the Sligo line no longer has Fastrack - due to a lack of guards on the trains. Somebody please advise me?

Coming to Mark Gleeson's point that the checker could lock-off certain doors to get around problems of train lengths at Rathdrum. Again, as I understand it the days of regular ticket checkers are also numbered and this will leave the driver as the only IE employee on the train!

Another point that concerns me: I have noted that the Rail Gourmet staff regularly retire to the back cab on railcars when finished their shifts - should a non-IE staff member have access to the driving trailer of a service train? Health and Safety how are you???:mad:

Thomas Ralph 07-12-2008 21:57

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mark Gleeson (Post 39339)
There will be 6 coach 22k services to Rosslare. Only one station is a problem, Rathdrum and as it stands it means only 1 door will be unusable.

I think the off-side platform at Enniscorthy may be a problem as well. It just fits six 2800s and I suspect six 22000s are longer.

Thomas Ralph 07-12-2008 22:02

Quote:

Originally Posted by PLUMB LOCO (Post 39345)
Yes - Point taken the MkIIs - despite having 1st class compo carriages as part of the train make-up never officially had 1st class accomodation but why should the line not have 1st class?

I think it's partially a case of lack of demand and partially that the trains are suburban for a good part of their run, so having a first-class section would just reduce the seating accommodation for regular passengers.

Quote:

Originally Posted by PLUMB LOCO (Post 39345)
Second point - as far as I know the Sligo line no longer has Fastrack - due to a lack of guards on the trains. Somebody please advise me?

At the moment it does not but it could be back soon as there is a recently-discovered parcel cupboard on the 22Ks. Don't know if there's any demand to speak of though.

Quote:

Originally Posted by PLUMB LOCO (Post 39345)
Coming to Mark Gleeson's point that the checker could lock-off certain doors to get around problems of train lengths at Rathdrum. Again, as I understand it the days of regular ticket checkers are also numbered and this will leave the driver as the only IE employee on the train!

I don't think ticket checkers are an endangered species in any way, especially on that line as none of the stations south of Bray have validation gates.

Quote:

Originally Posted by PLUMB LOCO (Post 39345)
Another point that concerns me: I have noted that the Rail Gourmet staff regularly retire to the back cab on railcars when finished their shifts - should a non-IE staff member have access to the driving trailer of a service train? Health and Safety how are you???:mad:

The console is locked off so it shouldn't be a big issue.

PLUMB LOCO 07-12-2008 23:04

'At the moment it does not but it could be back soon as there is a recently-discovered parcel cupboard on the 22Ks. Don't know if there's any demand to speak of though'.

The discovery of a parcel cupboard on the 22ks, or the demand for Fastrack have no bearing on the matter. As I have stated before no guards - no Fastrack. It is that simple.

Given that some in Railusers Ireland seem to think that freight (incl.Fastrack) is mutually exclusive from passenger trains I don't know whether there is much point in my going on about it but here it is again made simple for certain members of the committee. More revenue from freight (in this case Fastrack) 'should' help keep fares down. Encouraging freight on to the railway makes the case for investing in the railway more acceptable - especially to that large part of the population who never use a train from one end of the year to the next. Given that CIE/IE were charging as much and, in some cases, more to send a letter by train than a passenger it would seem to make sense to remove some of the railcars seats and put in a proper parcels compartment. Will it happen - never! Time to bring on Michael O'Leary or someone like him not some semi-state bureaucrat like the present incumbent at Heuston Station. :mad:

PLUMB LOCO 07-12-2008 23:17

'I think it's partially a case of lack of demand and partially that the trains are suburban for a good part of their run, so having a first-class section would just reduce the seating accommodation for regular passengers.'


Yes, the current Dublin/Rosslare Harbour service is partially suburban and this needs to be addressed. There is a good case to be made for making Greystones the first stop out of Dublin and the last stop in the Up direction. Why should inter-city passengers have to put up with commuters sitting all over them once the train reaches Bray in the Up direction or until they reach Bray in the Down direction. It makes the whole 'inter-city' experience wholly unpleasant. It doesn't happen on any other inter-city service.

1st class is the standard setter - even if little used - and services without it soon become 'sub-standard' class rather than standard class. The whole business class of traveller tends to be put off rail travel when 1st class is not available. Not from a snobbery point of view but more in terms of having somewhere quiet and slightly more spacious to work in.

The bloody awful catering also needs to be urgently addressed. The poxy, grossly overpriced trolley service simply is not acceptable. :mad:

Derek Wheeler 07-12-2008 23:26

Fastrack service has been the lifeline for Irish businesses for many many years. Why? Well because it was the quickest and cheapest method to send goods on a sameday service. A basic parcel can be sent to Cork from Heuston, station to station, for a mere 25 Euro. Get a courier to do it and its 400 euro! Don't even mention a taxi!!!!

The run down of the fastrack service is a disgrace, because it is not like the traditional freight traffic that people think of. It is actually a rail users facility on a very simple level. I have daily dealings with fastrack and I can safely say that if you think its a service that only "businesses" use then you are sadly mistaken. This service is utilised by many individual people in the movement of items. Regardless, the small business use, is paramount and it is a "railusers" facility, due to the multitude of private use. One should not get confused by the term "RAILFREIGHT". Fastrack is very different and very unique.

The Sligo line has a fastrack service, but Mullingar is ommitted, because the station people wanted more dosh, to pick up parcels, after the service had been done by van, during the use of commuter railcars. The sign in the fastrack office in Connolly clearly states that Mullingar has no fastrack service.

Fastrack should be a railusers issue.

sublimity 08-12-2008 00:06

Quote:

Originally Posted by PLUMB LOCO (Post 39356)

Yes, the current Dublin/Rosslare Harbour service is partially suburban and this needs to be addressed. There is a good case to be made for making Greystones the first stop out of Dublin and the last stop in the Up direction.

:

I see your point and agree totally.
It will hopefully be restored to its 'Intercity' status by Spring /Summer next year. First stop will be Bray though.

Thomas Ralph 08-12-2008 10:44

Quote:

Originally Posted by PLUMB LOCO (Post 39356)
The bloody awful catering also needs to be urgently addressed. The poxy, grossly overpriced trolley service simply is not acceptable. :mad:

Catering is an issue fleetwide. Of course with just two of the daily trains having even a trolley, it's that bit worse again on Dub-Rosslare.

KSW 08-12-2008 11:54

Quote:

Originally Posted by PLUMB LOCO (Post 39356)
Yes, the current Dublin/Rosslare Harbour service is partially suburban and this needs to be addressed. There is a good case to be made for making Greystones the first stop out of Dublin and the last stop in the Up direction. It makes the whole 'inter-city' experience wholly unpleasant. It doesn't happen on any other inter-city service.

The Dublin/Rosslare has been a suburban since July2004 when the 2700 commuter railcars entered service on the line then later de-coupled outside Wexford. When the new 22k trains come on the line I think Greystones should be considered as the first stop in each direction. It would make the word INTERCITY on the Rosslare line more desireable maybe knocking of 5-10mins in approching bray/ stopping/ departing gaining speed again.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mark Gleeson (Post 39339)
There will be 6 coach 22k services to Rosslare. Only one station is a problem, Rathdrum and as it stands it means only 1 door will be unusable.

Curiously enough the Rosslare line has shown the greatest reduction in journey times of any route when you compare 1974 against today

It seems pointless to me when IE were re-doing the platform lenghts down along the line when if they just lenghtened the platforms by another 20feet this wouldnt be a problem.

Mark you say the Rosslare line has shown the greastest reduction in journey times compared to 1974 im guessing this is by about 10mins:D. I would love to see the journey times of the years that past and just see how Irish Rail's new track upgrading / signalling have reduced their journey times !!! :):)

Just curiosity how long does the train take from Wexford to Enniscorthy compared to what it should take without padding. Gorey to Rosslare would it take 1hour rather 1hr10mins and Wexford 40mins rather 50mins.

Mark Gleeson 08-12-2008 12:04

About 25 minutes reduction was over 3:15, best today is 2:47

Colm Moore 08-12-2008 15:45

One important thing about Fastrack and other non-passenger services.

Passenger numbers is the key indicator when the CIÉ group goes to government looking for money, parcels, bikes, etc. probably aren't counted.

Dublin Bus had to instruct their drivers to ensure that all season ticket holders and social welfare pass holders were manually recorded if automatic recording failed (theres a button to press on hte ticket machine).

dowlingm 08-12-2008 17:58

Quote:

Originally Posted by PLUMB LOCO (Post 39356)
Why should inter-city passengers have to put up with commuters sitting all over them once the train reaches Bray in the Up direction or until they reach Bray in the Down direction. It makes the whole 'inter-city' experience wholly unpleasant. It doesn't happen on any other inter-city service.

I understood that that is absolutely the case on the northern line to Dundalk/Drogheda :confused:

CSL 09-12-2008 15:09

which is easy to fix by having Newry the first stop.

chris 09-12-2008 15:16

Quote:

Originally Posted by CSL (Post 39456)
which is easy to fix by having Newry the first stop.

Of course it's not as easy as that. What about people going from Dundalk/Drogheda to Newry/Portadown/Belfast. Do you honestly expect them to back-track the whole way back to Dublin?

The least you can get away with is a stop in Dundalk.

Colm Moore 10-12-2008 17:16

Or reserved seating only on most Enterprise services.

sean 10-12-2008 20:17

Quote:

Originally Posted by chris (Post 39457)
Of course it's not as easy as that. What about people going from Dundalk/Drogheda to Newry/Portadown/Belfast. Do you honestly expect them to back-track the whole way back to Dublin?

The least you can get away with is a stop in Dundalk.

The two things that REALLY grind my gears about how Irish Rail is run, are the things that I've seen done right in the U.S. and to a lesser extent Germany, that IE completely phail at.
The first is my well known pet hate of train floor heights that don't match the platforms.
The second is the fare structure, and the case highlighted here - how to turn the Enterprise into an actual Intercity train - is but one of many reasons why IMO Irish Rail should lift wholesale the fare structure from the MTA Metro North and Long Island Railroads from New York City.

That fare structure is simple, transparent, organised and properly implemented. It provides a clear fare structure that's easy to understand, has simple and effective peak/off peak designations and - relevant to this debate - a method of stopping to pick up and set down passengers only, by way of R/D restrictions on stops in the timetable.

What this means is that a train can stop at a station, going into the City to drop off passengers only, or leaving the City to pick up only.
This is useful as all Metro North trains start/terminate at Grand Central terminal, but all stop at Harlem 125th St and some New Haven and Harlem Valley-bound trains stop at Fordham in the Bronx to pick up passengers on the way out, or drop them off on the way in.

The fare rules are such that if you use such a train to travel between GCT and 125th St or Fordham, you will be liable for a full fare to/from the next stop on the train's journey - for example if you board a train bound for New Haven, 1st stop Stamford, but stops in Fordham to pickup passengers, with the intention of getting off there, you will have to have a ticket for Stamford, and if you don't the on board fare surcharge is very steep, in that case you could pay up to $20 (peak time and onboard purchase both drive up the fare cost) where the Subway would have got you there for $2.
Departure boards at GCT do not list "Pick Up Only" stops, giving the 1st stop as the first non-restricted stop.

The purpose of these restricted stops is to allow people working in or travelling onwards from the Northside of the city to access their jobs, connections etc from the area the trains are meant to provide suburban service to. That the trains are not to be used for intra-city "rat running" is made very clear.

Obviously this component would have extreme value on long distance services ex-Connolly and to a lesser extent, ex-Heuston here, Enterprise trains could make any stops near Dublin deemed useful for long distance travellers, ditto for the Sligo line (Drumcondra Metro, Clonsilla Pace line), Rosslare (Bray/Greystones anyone?) without the trains becoming overstuffed with short-haullers.

Colm Moore 11-12-2008 22:34

Not unlike the Dublin Bus minimum fare scheme then.

shweeney 16-12-2008 11:19

Quote:

Originally Posted by PLUMB LOCO (Post 39356)
Yes, the current Dublin/Rosslare Harbour service is partially suburban and this needs to be addressed. There is a good case to be made for making Greystones the first stop out of Dublin and the last stop in the Up direction. Why should inter-city passengers have to put up with commuters sitting all over them once the train reaches Bray in the Up direction or until they reach Bray in the Down direction.

In my experience the majority of passengers on any Rosslare train leaving Dublin are actually going to Bray or Greystones - there just aren't that many actual "inter-city" passengers on that line. The reason it has been commuterised is because most of the passengers (Wicklow, Arklow, Gorey as well) are commuters. Any time I've been on it south of Greystones theres been a lot of empty seats (and thats on a 4-car train).

WRT to the running time - the Rosslare and Gorey\Enniscorthy trains invariably seem to get halted after Sidney Parade to wait for the Merrion Gates to close. DARTs don't suffer from this presumably because the gates are closed while the DART is actually in SP station. The express trains should be given more priority here.

KSW 16-12-2008 12:02

Quote:

Originally Posted by shweeney (Post 39700)
In my experience the majority of passengers on any Rosslare train leaving Dublin are actually going to Bray or Greystones - there just aren't that many actual "inter-city" passengers on that line.

Do you ever wonder why there are less people on this line.
(1) No Intercity train since July2004 we got a 2700 set train which departed outside Wexford, we got stuck with the 2800 sets which are really uncomfortable.

(2) The length of time between Gorey and Dublin on the train is really insane.

(3) Every train takes 40+ mins plus from Bray to Connolly thats a DART journey time.

I haven't used the train service from Gorey in about 7months and it is literally heaven:):). I used to travel on a daily basis but Now and many other people have DERAILED THE TRAIN:D:D

sublimity 16-12-2008 12:20

Quote:

Originally Posted by shweeney (Post 39700)
Any time I've been on it south of Greystones theres been a lot of empty seats (and thats on a 4-car train).

Iarnrod Eireann can only blame themselves for the empty seats
They chose to make the line a commuter route in July '04, now they're paying the price.
When the new trains finally travel the Rosslare line I gurantee passenger numbers will increase. Why? Because it will be an Inter City route again.
The bottom line is;the commuter trains deterred people from using this line


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