Bacon roll offer 'an insult'

REGULAR commuters on the region's railway who say they are having to endure third world conditions on the trains are amazed they have been offered a bacon roll by way of compensation.

REGULAR commuters on the region's railway who say they are having to endure third world conditions on the trains are amazed they have been offered a bacon roll by way of compensation.

Rail operator One has written to Commuter Club members offering them a bacon roll, Danish pastry and a drink as an apology for recent problems.

But commuters say that the well-intentioned gesture falls far short of what they expect and are frustrated with failing air conditioning, delays and overcrowding on the trains.

Commuter Club member Jamie Norman, who commutes to the City every weekday from his home near Manningtree, said: “It may be well intentioned but it is misplaced given the dreadful service we have suffered.


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“One have apologised and offered us a bacon roll, a Danish pastry and a drink. We have just had enough. I am sure I speak for all commuters when I say such intended generosity is somewhat misplaced.

“The trains are so often late, in the last five working days there has been four significant delays. We are having to travel in third world conditions. The onboard staff have to cope with this and are very helpful; it's very difficult for them too. It's so very frustrating.''

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Mr Norman is also concerned that claims of overall improved punctuality by rail operators do not reflect the true picture on individual lines, and only serve to antagonise commuters.

A spokesman for One said the company fully understood that it had not been easy for passengers during the last few weeks on the main Norwich to London line, but said some problems have been outside their control, including problems on the lines including nearby fires and vandalism.

He said: “The offer of food and drink is a gesture to say we are sorry, to say we recognise that it has not been easy the last few weeks, it's not meant to undermine our other efforts taking everything else seriously.

“The factors that are in our control, the fleet, we are working very hard to put right. The temperatures the last couple of days have been extreme and the kit has not been robust enough, but then it is 30 years old.

“The air-conditioning on the old trains is very fragile and we are spending significant amounts of money employing additional air conditioning engineers. We are also going through a transformation, upgrading the main line trains.''

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