Dysfunctional public transport

Alton Station bus stop

Alton Station bus stop

No 64 bus leaving Alton Station is timed to depart at exactly the same time as the London train arrives.

What brain dead imbecile designs a bus timetable that the bus departs as the connecting train arrives, that guarantees you miss the bus, leaving passengers half an hour to wait for the next bus?

Does Stagecoach hate bus passengers?

Ten minutes before the bus was due a 64 bus arrived.

I do not know why, but I asked was it the bus for Winchester?

No, replied the driver, this bus goes around the estates yours is the next bus.

How can you have two different routes, each with the same number?

I looked again at the timetable, no, no bus shown going around the estates, just a bus every half hour to Winchester, timed to depart that you miss it as your arrive by train.

I then noticed there was a second timetable, and yes, it too was No 64.

I then noticed the bus timetables were the new schedule, not valid until 31 August 2014.

The sign at the bus stop shows this to be a bus train interchange.

Stagecoach which owns the buses, also owns South West Trains.

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3 Responses to “Dysfunctional public transport”

  1. Faz Says:

    The wonders of privatising an intrinsically national resource like the railway system also means that in the UK you can land at an airport, be very lucky even to find a rail terminal there, then have to change at some number of stations on your journey, on arrival at each of which you will likely have just missed the onward link because they’re different train companies who don’t give a monkey’s about trying to synchronise with other companies’ train arrival/departures.

    In any civilised country (which I guess now limits the discussion to northern european germanic and scandics) the WHOLE travel infrastructure is recognised as being a national resource, like the water supply or electric supply. You’ll be able to get from A to Z using any mixture of bus, tram, undeground and overground trains and they’ll be coordinated.

    Transport infrastructure in the UK has been broken for a long time and the longer it waits the more expensive the fix will be. Might already be too late.

  2. keithpp Says:

    There is a reasonable hourly service Reading-Guildford-Gatwick. At Gatwick, train station is part of the terminal building, though now a hassle accessing the terminal with the introduction of automatic barriers.

    Arrive Gatwick late at night, no trains, have to spend the night on a hard bench at the airport waiting for first train in the morning.

    Green Party has proposed renationalising the rail network. The sooner the better.

    There is not a cost to the Public Purse in doing so, as wait until each rail franchise is up for renewal, then take back into Public Ownership.

    The East Coast mainline, is well run, it returns a profit. It is publicly owned. The ConDem government is determined to sell it off. The existing franchise holder is not allowed to bid.

    Last week, we learnt rail fares will go up in the New Year by 3.5%. For over a decade, rail fares have risen by twice the rate of inflation, over the same period wages have flat-lined, if not decreased. We are told we are seeing improving services. Everyone who regularly uses public transport knows this not to be the case.

    A good example is the clapped-out, inner-city cattle trucks now running on the Guildford-Aldershot-Ascot line. These trains are a disgrace dirty, old, no toilets, not possible to move through the train.


    The interchange at Alton would be very easy to resolve, simply re-time the buses, or allow time for passengers to alight from the train and catch the bus.

    In Europe. a pragmatic approach to public transport. It is seen as an essential infrastructure, a cheap and efficient means to move people around, and saves on pollution, fuel and expensive foreign imports.

    In Sweden during the 1980s, when cost of living in Sweden was double that of England, when Ken Livingstone dropped the fares in London, the cost of Central Zone in London for a week, was the same as whole of Stockholm on bus, train and underground for a month. Alighting from an underground train, the next one would be pulling in before had left the platform. In the evening, when fewer passengers, instead of reducing frequency, reduce the length of the trains. There was no rush hour, people varied the hours when they went to work. Car ownership was not seen as a status symbol.

    In Athens last year, underground cheap, stations and trains very modern.


    This year, a train along the coast, Lisbon to Cascais, 35 minutes journey, less than two euros.

    In Cyprus, buses every 10-15 minutes Ayia Napa-Protaras-Paralmni, flat fare of one euro, now 1.5 euros. The buses run all through the night at hourly intervals.

  3. keithpp Says:

    No 64 Bus Winchester to Alton

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