Monday, October 18, 2010

Another typical Monday morning

I arrived in time to catch my normal train to Waterloo at 8:30. It failed to appear and the first arrival was at 8:42. We were held outside Wembley Park with what the driver first described as a faulty signal and then as a problem with the signals computer not recognising the train ahead of us (the first time this particular excuse has ever been heard on Ramblings). It did not help that there was a severe power failure on the Jubbly and they were actually detraining people in the tunnels between Finchley Road and Green Park, so of course our train was as packed as it could be when we finally left Wembley Park.

Arriving at Baker Street more than 20 minutes later than normal my mood was, shall we say, strangely heightened to discover that the down escalator to the Bakerloo was out of action.

The perfect start to the commuting week? Time will tell.


The evening journey could also have been poor but I lucked in. The Met had delays all day due withdrawal of trains for maintenance, according to a rather strange* printed announcement from the Head of Operations, and some of the intervals were daunting - if you have to wait 15 minutes for a train coming up from the City it will be full when it reaches Baker Street. But the first train out was for Uxbridge and started from Baker Street. Nevertheless by the time it left it was full and stayed full with people standing right up to Eastcote. I was fortunate that I boarded when there were still plenty of seats available.

*Why strange? One assumes that maintenance is normally planned and should not result in a shortage of trains. So this was unplanned, or the planning went wrong. But the notice just said the trains were withdrawn, leaving us to speculate whether anyone actually knows what they are doing or whether someone took the decision to pull half the fleet out of service on a whim, perhaps to try to spread a little joy this Monday.

[later still - I don't normally add addenda to posts but you're worth it]

My friends at District Dave's forums have the answer.

It is more than a minor problem - some sort of cracking that needs investigation and a work to rule in the depot that is slowing down normal working, hence trains out of service. It's going to be a fun-filled Autumn.

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