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“Please help me persuade London Midland to provide on-board announcements on Cross-City services.” – David Barton

Description

David Barton

The units which operate London Midland's Cross-City services between Redditch and Lichfield Trent Valley are equipped with the facility for on-board staff to make announcements. Announcing which station is coming next is particularly important for those people, like me, who suffer from sight problems. The problem mainly exists at night when it is hard to see station signs due to the bright lighting on the train and the poor lighting on the stations. There are no on-board screens either. I have raised this issue with London Midland three times, and on every occasion have been promised that staff will be reminded that they are expected to announce station arrivals to assist the visually impaired. Despite these assurances, I frequently travel on services where there are still no announcements. In the end, I don't want assurances, I want action.

Problem History

  • 1 David Barton reported the issue on FixMyTransport. close 18:52 13 Oct 2011
  • 2 David Barton wrote to London Midland close 18:52 13 Oct 2011

    Here is the letter that David Barton wrote.

    Lack of announcements on-board London Midland's Cross-City services

    The units which operate London Midland's Cross-City services between Redditch and Lichfield Trent Valley are equipped with the facility for on-board staff to make announcements. Announcing which station is coming next is particularly important for those people, like me, who suffer from sight problems. The problem mainly exists at night when it is hard to see station signs due to the bright lighting on the train and the poor lighting on the stations. There are no on-board screens either. I have raised this issue with London Midland three times, and on every occasion have been promised that staff will be reminded that they are expected to announce station arrivals to assist the visually impaired. Despite these assurances, I frequently travel on services where there are still no announcements. In the end, I don't want assurances, I want action.

  • 3 Comments responded to David Barton close 18:55 13 Oct 2011
    Thank you for getting in touch.

    This is confirmation that we have received your email and will
    respond within ten working days (in line with our Passenger's
    Charter) once we have looked into your comments in more detail.

    If the matter is clearly urgent, we will try our best to reply
    sooner.

    Thank you for your patience.

    Kind Regards,

    Customer Relations Team
    London Midland

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    References

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  • 4 Myf Nixon advised David to write to Passenger Focus. close 10:09 14 Oct 2011

    Good luck David, this is a really important point. I hope it gets heard.

    I'm perturbed to see that you've had assurances in the past that have not been acted on. For that reason I'm going to suggest that you also write to Passenger Focus, the independent watchdog.

    They say: "If you are unhappy with the outcome of your complaint or you do not feel the train company handled it appropriately you can ask us to follow it up.

    I imagine that some of the campaigns for accessibility might be interested in this point too - let me know if you want to contact them and I can easily dig out some relevant email addresses.

    anorak
    admin
  • 5 David Barton wrote to Passenger Focus following Myf Nixon's advice. close 12:21 14 Oct 2011

    Hello, I am wondering if you might be able to give me some support over an issue of accessibility.

    The units which operate London Midland's Cross-City services between Redditch and Lichfield Trent Valley are equipped with the facility for on-board staff to make announcements. Announcing which station is coming next is particularly important for those people, like me, who suffer from sight problems.

    The problem mainly exists at night when it is hard to see station signs due to the bright lighting on the train and the poor lighting on the stations. There are no on-board screens either. I have raised this issue with London Midland three times, and on every occasion have been promised that staff will be reminded that they are expected to announce station arrivals to assist the visually impaired.

    Despite these assurances, I frequently travel on services where there are still no announcements. In the end, I don't want assurances, I want action.

    Could I ask for some guidance as to what to do next, given that I have raised the issue before but without results? You can contact me by replying directly to this email.

    Many thanks,

    David Barton

  • 6 David Barton added an update close 12:22 14 Oct 2011

    Message acknowledged by London Midland, and also forward to Passenger Focus

  • 7 Advice responded to David Barton close 12:22 14 Oct 2011
    We are pleased to acknowledge your email and will contact you
    within 10 days. 

    Thank you for getting in touch with Passenger Focus.

    The Passenger Team
    Passenger Focus
    The independent passenger watchdog
    t 0300 123 2350
    f 0161 236 1574
    e [1][email address]

    w [2]www.passengerfocus.org.uk
    Passenger Focus, Freepost RRRE-ETTC-LEET, PO Box 4257, M60 3AR 

    Follow us on Twitter [3]@passengerfocus

    Our passenger contact centre is open 8am - 8pm Monday to Friday
    and 8am - 4pm at weekends

    show quoted sections

    References

    Visible links
    1. mailto:[email address]
    2. http://www.passengerfocus.org.uk/
    http://www.passengerfocus.org.uk/
    3. http://twitter.com/#!/PassengerFocus
  • 8 Advice responded to David Barton close 14:12 14 Oct 2011
    Dear Mr Barton,

    Thank you for your e-mail below.

    Passenger Focus is the statutory watchdog protecting and
    promoting passengers' interests.  I should explain that our role
    includes dealing with customer complaints that the rail industry
    has not been able to resolve satisfactorily. This means that we
    must give the rail industry an opportunity to sort things out
    with you before we get involved.

    Please could you provide all the correspondence you have had
    London Midland. Upon receiving this we shall be in a better
    position to assist you further.

    Kind regards

    Greg Kyndt
    Passenger Team Adviser

    show quoted sections
  • 9 David Barton wrote to Advice close 14:18 14 Oct 2011

    I'm afraid I don't have the correspndance as it was either communicated via e-mail or on Twitter.

    David

    -----Original Message-----

    Dear Mr Barton,
     
    Thank you for your e-mail below.
     
    Passenger Focus is the statutory watchdog protecting and
    promoting passengers' interests.  I should explain that our role
    includes dealing with customer complaints that the rail industry
    has not been able to resolve satisfactorily. This means that we
    must give the rail industry an opportunity to sort things out
    with you before we get involved.
     
    Please could you provide all the correspondence you have had
    London Midland. Upon receiving this we shall be in a better
    position to assist you further.
     
    Kind regards
     
    Greg Kyndt
    Passenger Team Adviser
     

  • 10 Advice responded to David Barton close 14:19 14 Oct 2011
    We are pleased to acknowledge your email and will contact you
    within 10 days. 

    Thank you for getting in touch with Passenger Focus.

    The Passenger Team
    Passenger Focus
    The independent passenger watchdog
    t 0300 123 2350
    f 0161 236 1574
    e [1][email address]

    w [2]www.passengerfocus.org.uk
    Passenger Focus, Freepost RRRE-ETTC-LEET, PO Box 4257, M60 3AR 

    Follow us on Twitter [3]@passengerfocus

    Our passenger contact centre is open 8am - 8pm Monday to Friday
    and 8am - 4pm at weekends

    show quoted sections

    References

    Visible links
    1. mailto:[email address]
    2. http://www.passengerfocus.org.uk/
    http://www.passengerfocus.org.uk/
    3. http://twitter.com/#!/PassengerFocus
  • 11 London Midland responded to David Barton close 12:12 02 Nov 2011
    Dear Mr Barton

    Thank you for your e-mail to us via the fixmytransport website, I am sorry
    for the time it has taken to respond to you.

    This matter is currently being looked at by the senior conductor managers
    for Birmingham New Street and once I hear back from them I will be in
    contact with you again.

    In the meantime if you have any further queries please let me know.

    Yours sincerely,

    Arthur Jones
    Customer Relations Advisor

    London Midland, P O Box 4323, Birmingham, B2 4QT

    Buy tickets for any UK rail journey - with no booking fee - at www.londonmidland.com

    Save a tree... please don't print this e-mail unless you really need to.

    This email is sent subject to our email disclaimer which can be accessed here www.londonmidland.com/Disclaimer
  • 12 David Barton added an update close 12:14 02 Nov 2011

    LM are investigating (heard that before...!)

  • 13 David Barton commented close 17:40 24 Nov 2011

    Travelled on the 1935 Birmingham New Street to Lichfield Trent Valley yesterday where there were, once again, no announcements after Duddeston.

  • 14 Myf Nixon commented close 09:41 25 Nov 2011

    ...and it's been a while since their last response, too. If you'd like to give them a nudge, you can sue the yellow "email" button at the top of this campaign page.

    anorak
    admin
  • 15 David Barton wrote to London Midland close 12:35 20 Dec 2011

    It has been nearly 2 months since you replied indicating you would investigate this issue with the Senior Conductor at Birmingham New Street. Do you have any further news on this issue yet?

    David

  • 16 David Barton added an update close 12:36 20 Dec 2011

    Follow-up e-mail sent to London Midland as no reply received since theirs on 2nd November.

  • 17 Comments responded to David Barton close 12:36 20 Dec 2011
    Thank you for getting in touch.

    This is confirmation that we have received your e-mail.

    We are currently experiencing a high volume of correspondence
    and as a result response times may be extended (from the 10 days
    detailed in our Passenger Charter). Please be assured
    that we are working very hard to address all comments received
    and would like to apologise in advance for any inconvenience
    caused to you as a result of our extended response times.

    If the matter is clearly urgent, we will try our best to respond
    sooner.

    Kind regards

    Customer Relations Team

    London Midland

    Buy tickets for any UK rail journey - with no booking fee - at
    www.londonmidland.com

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    Save a tree... please don't print this e-mail unless you really
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  • 18 David Barton added an update close 16:05 29 Dec 2011

    I travelled on the 11:20 LTV to BHM, and the 14:35 BHM to LTV today and there were no announcements.

  • 19 Stuart Johnson commented close 19:18 29 Dec 2011

    I travelled on a local London Midland service over Christmas (Kidderminster to Leamington line), and on both occasions trains had visual displays in the carriage, and audio announcements of next stops (though the announcements were 'pre-recorded' type). Strange that your trains don't!

    anorak
  • 20 David Barton commented close 19:42 29 Dec 2011

    Sadly Stuart, they are a different class of train - about 20 years older than the ones now running on that line.

  • 21 David Barton commented close 19:29 16 Jan 2012

    Over three months on...still no response :-(

  • 22 London Midland responded to David Barton close 17:03 18 Jan 2012
    Dear Mr Barton

    Thank you for your e-mail, I'm very sorry that we have been in touch in
    relation to your ongoing query with the announcements being made on the
    Cross City services.

    This is still something that we are looking at and I will be in touch with
    you as soon as I have further information.

    In the meantime I would like to thank you for your continued patience and
    if you have any further queries then please let me know.

    Yours sincerely,

    Arthur Jones
    Customer Relations Supervisor

    London Midland, P O Box 4323, Birmingham, B2 4QT

    Buy tickets for any UK rail journey - with no booking fee - at www.londonmidland.com

    Save a tree... please don't print this e-mail unless you really need to.

    This email is sent subject to our email disclaimer which can be accessed here www.londonmidland.com/Disclaimer
  • 23 London Midland responded to David Barton close 13:38 26 Jan 2012
    Dear Mr Barton

    Thank you for your e-mails in relation to the announcements on the trains
    operating on our Cross City services.

    These particular trains are equipped so that the doors can be controlled
    from the middle of the train and also from the cab at the back of the
    train. However, announcements can only be made from the cab at the rear of
    the train.

    We have been encouraging the on train staff to spend more time out on the
    train with the customers being able to assist. This means operating the
    door from the middle of the train and so will not allow for any
    announcements to be made. If they are in the cab at the rear of the train,
    they will make the announcements prior to station arrival.

    These trains do not have the capability for announcements to be made
    automatically or for the conductors to make these from the middle of the
    train. In the long term we would like to have auto-announcements on these
    trains, as with other services that we operate.

    In the meantime I have raised your concerns with the lead conductor manager
    so that he aware of the feedback we are getting in relation to this matter.
    I hope that I have been able to explain the reason why the announcements
    are sometimes not made on these trains.

    Yours sincerely,

    James Foxall
    Customer Relations Supervisor

    London Midland, P O Box 4323, Birmingham, B2 4QT

    Buy tickets for any UK rail journey - with no booking fee - at www.londonmidland.com

    Save a tree... please don't print this e-mail unless you really need to.

    This email is sent subject to our email disclaimer which can be accessed here www.londonmidland.com/Disclaimer
  • 24 David Barton commented close 15:39 07 Feb 2012

    I will be interested to know whether there is any improvement over the coming months. Whilst I can see the merit in encouraging staff to be visible to the passengers, I do think it's possible to combine this effectively alongside announcing a certain proportion of the station stops (maybe the main ones - Four Oaks, Sutton Coldfield and Lichfield City would be a good 'anchor' point for passengers).

  • 25 Paul Hollinghurst commented close 19:01 07 Feb 2012

    David,
    It is good to see London Midland have looked into this and explained the situation in some detail. It sounds as if it will be worth feeding back information to them about how this is going, and also pass onto them your idea of at least announcing the 3 major stations.
    Good luck with this and please do come back and update your page with any further progress you make.
    Paul (FixMyTransport Volunteer)

    anorak
    admin
Comment
  • started 13 October 2011
  • supporters 2
Train route between Birmingham New Street and Lichfield Trent Valley operated by London Midland
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