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I am a seasonal monthly train ticket buyer and I also buy a plus bus ticket to help with my travels costing roughly £200 a month. This is my experience of travel to work and when I loose a bag on a train.
Ash Station cannot afford a public bridge yet somehow why hasn't anyone bothered to start a requested donations from the public for a bridge? Start early would be best yet I am wondering how much does a bridge cost....
Penalized for Loosing Bag on Train
From Reading to Ash, I left my fave green ruck sack on the train. Turns out First Great Western has their lost property HQ at the corner of the UK country called, "Bristol Temple Meads".
I was given 3 options to getting my lost property back:
- Get a member of family to drive there and pick it up.
- Get a courier to pick it up
- Or pick it up myself
Oh and there is a charge depending on the size of the baggage. Mine was class C or something like that at £5 yet I was bill at Bristol for £3, which I guess is ok considering they were holding the bag. Thankfully and they topped up my bottle of water which was nice of the staff. So in total, Great First Western got £47 quid out of me, for loosing my bag.
I got to the Bristol Temple Meads, they then tell me if I booked a week in advance... I would saved £20 :/ Bit late to tell me now and they not tell me on the phone when I was reporting it lost?.
Salvaging the Lost Property
The day I lost my property, I walked close to my work area in Aldershot, I realized I forgot my bag. I called up "First Great Western" and they said they would not call the train unless it was an emergency... We live in a digital the age where communication is plentiful can't they atleast signal something or mark for train to be check at the end of the day?.
They will not transport the property incase of further liability, a long time ago, they used to deliver mail and transported lost property on the train on the "Ticket Conductors Carriage". I guess this is their cut backs for the service to save money :/
Saw this Handy Computer at Bristol Temple Meads Station's Lost Property office. It shows the stations everywhere around the UK. I have a feeling they didn't even bother using such a computer when I reported my lost bag.
My journay to Work is Roughly this long
On the way back, home to Reading I fell on the sleep on the train and ended up in London. The ticket officer wondered why I fell a sleep on the train as I showed him the ticket I used to to get to Bristol Temple Meads.
He shook his head thinking I was some idiot :/
My thoughts for Improvement
Get scanner installed and fax, so people can send in identification digitally showing their address and then post it for them with the charge for posting and service for packing? Or even transport the baggage to the traveller's home town station?
Could the Lost Property offices of all train services be centralized in the centre of the UK and or other countries?
Ash to Aldershot [Insert Walkway here] [My regular journey]
National Rail advertises the journey from Reading to Aldershot, that I change at Ash.
My journey to work, seems roughly ok in the morning, yet I notice the service lacks during the day and after 5:30pm. And quite often, the staff on First Train, always signals to Hurry up every time due to this....
View Larger Map
Train Signal Road Crossing blocks us from even getting to the other side of the platform. Each day I use the service, my frustration grows slowly as I keep seeing trains that I am on time for, rush off due to the Train Signal Road Crossing. Every once in a while I hear the ticket officer shouting out, "CA'MON HURRY UP!!".
Probably 20% of my time is lost due to the poor quality of service that Ash Station gives. Sometimes I have to wait an hour, even though I am on time for the trains and then get blocked by the Train Signal Road Crossing... I some times wave goodbye from the train from the other side of the barrier just to make myself feel better.
Bridge or Walkway between platforms.
Have Ash actually made any effort in all their time? Please I like to hear of any stories. Think they have some space for something to help the travellers for Ash can they afford it, could us the travelers help fund it?
Each day I use the service and bump into the Train Signal Crossing barrier, my motivation to moaning about these issues grows. Hence this big blog post with Google Maps and street view shots.
In fact if I start getting donations into my Paypal account as of now for help to funding a possible walkway between...It would probably motivate me to start a site to keep track of the progress and search for anyone willing to help it officially happen. None of the money will be for me but for the people of Ash Station travelers.