Travel Test
Get on board! CityZap could be the future

Get on board! CityZap could be the future

Leeds to Manchester has been looked at and dismissed by bus operators many times over the years – but Transdev Blazefield had a zappy new idea   Linking Leeds and Manchester, every hour   VISITED: 15th November 2017 SERVICE: The first CityZap route has linked Leeds and York since March 2016, using SatNav technology. Last...
The bus industry and the diversity challenge

The bus industry and the diversity challenge

A visit to last week’s ALBUM Conference in Blackpool left me pondering the lack of diversity among the senior ranks of the bus industry, and what should be done about it   More fool Blackpool Transport boss, Jane Cole for inviting me to present at the ALBUM Conference in Blackpool last week. I had a...
Southern take their eye off the ball at Selhurst

Southern take their eye off the ball at Selhurst

I know it’s fashionable to criticise Southern, but a recent display at Selhurst reminds us that its a long way from being a Premier League operator – writes Alex Warner   Southern: troubled   VISITED: 26th April 2017 SERVICE: Southern is the brand name used by Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) on the Southern routes of...
Choose life, choose a career... choose buses?

Choose life, choose a career… choose buses?

Stuffy, traditional and facing extinction. Why should young people join the bus industry, and why should those who still have a choice decide to stay? Alex Warner offers his view   A familiar sight?: The dyed-in-the-wool, uninspiring attitudes of some ‘old farts’ can have a debilitating effect   Firstly an apology to Arriva’s bus big...
‘Sorry’ has become  an over-used word

‘Sorry’ has become an over-used word

We used to be an industry that struggled to say ‘sorry’ for failing customers, now it’s a word that is used so often that at times it has become noise, writes Alex Warner     Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word by Blue featuring Elton John is my favourite song of all time –...
End the witch-hunt and get some perspective

End the witch-hunt and get some perspective

The boss of South Eastern Trains faced a barrage of criticism in recent weeks, but the complex range of issues he faces are not being discussed, writes Alex Warner   David Statham has been managing director since September 2014   All this hullaballoo in the media last week about South Eastern Trains being the worst...
An epic trip over three days, with no delays!

An epic trip over three days, with no delays!

I experienced perfect punctuality across a series of railway journeys earlier this month, but it’s still not as easy as it could be to work on board trains   Train time as productive working time: The vision doesn’t always match the reality   Crisis? What crisis? Well may the portents of doom and gloom be...
A model for National Parks public transport

A model for National Parks public transport

With a lack of concessions, Go South Coast’s summertime New Forest Tour three-route network has proven both commercial and sustainable     VISITED: 3rd and 20th August 2015 SERVICE: The three-route New Forest Tour bus network offers “an open-top safari” through the New Forest National Park during the summer FARES: A one-day ticket is £15...
Facebook is a useful tool, but there are risks

Facebook is a useful tool, but there are risks

Are you on Facebook? In the UK, 24 million people log on every day and some transport operators are making better use of this forum than others writes Alex Warner     Do you flip? Do you toss? Do you squeeze? How would you respond to this Pancake Day-related question on TrentBarton’s Facebook page? Ahh,...
Does this whiteboard matter? I think it does

Does this whiteboard matter? I think it does

Despite all of the big talk from public transport’s big players like TfL, Alex Warner believes that too often the promises fail to match the reality   VISITED: August 2014 SERVICE: The London Underground serves 270 stations and has 250 miles of track. King’s Cross/St Pancras serves as an interchange between the Victoria, Northern and...
The largest fare evasion of all time? - I think not

The largest fare evasion of all time? – I think not

  Alex Warner believes that the well-publicised case of the hedge fund manager who dodged paying £42,550 in train fares is the tip of the iceberg Transport industry news bulletins can be predictable – the usual guff around franchise awards or extensions, “jam tomorrow” station upgrades, big investments, gravy train salaries and big fat fare...
TransPennine’s brand struggles to stand out

TransPennine’s brand struggles to stand out

  His southern-dwelling friends haven’t heard of  TransPennine Express, but Alex Warner wonders how many northerners are also unaware of it TransPennine Express is like the M62 Sport, Rugby League – good quality, but at best only on the periphery of the consciousness of us Southern softies. Indeed, in a recent brand survey undertaken by, ahem,...