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Bonkers Blog October 2013

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26 October (Part 1) - A wet argument

Fat Controller Abbey WoodAccording to the News Shopper our esteemed leader has written to another Fat Controller, Rick Haythornthwaite, Chairman of Network Rail to complain that the plans approved for Abbey Wood’s Crossrail terminus do not include platform canopies.

It is “completely wrong” she said. “It will undermine the otherwise high quality experience of using the new station. This is especially regrettable given both the high profile nature of the project and the collaborative working that has resulted in an otherwise excellent station design”.

It is hard to disagree although to my mind the biggest disappointment is the absence of a cross platform interchange for the travellers who will flood in from further down the North Kent line. Escalators from street level would have been nice.

I doubt Teresa O’Neill really cares and probably this is just a pre-election stunt to get herself into the papers. If she really cared about Abbey Wood commuters getting wet she would have been on the warpath many years ago. As every regular Abbey Wood user knows, the up platform is an elongated saucer.

It was like it when I was a daily commuter - and that is more than 21 years ago - and it is still like it now. It's impossible to get on the train after rain without paddling and thanks to National Rail insisting on the driver's start signals and screens being at the far end of the ten car platform, most trains (five car) make passengers run half the length of the platform to scramble into the rear carriage. It’s Network Rail’s way of showing their disdain for passenger comfort.

Teresa O’Neill has never complained to Rick Haythornthwaite about the minor ocean that engulfs the London bound platform every time it rains nor has her council fixed the flood at the station entrance that has inconvenienced everyone for the past 30 years or more. Perhaps that is why they are so pleased with the new high level entrance.

Click station image for News Shopper report.


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