Archive for the ‘Rail’ Category

Trundlin slowly home……

December 8, 2011
Shoreham-by-Sea Railway Train Station sunrise

When the weather decides to give a display of its force, travelling by any means can be difficult. A 149mph gust of wind on the peak of Cairn Gorm in Scotland today has been reported and there are widespread issues in the UK, from floods and travel difficulties in Scotland, to cancelled ferries from Portsmouth to the Isle of Wight.

In between, a fallen tree has blocked the London – Brighton rail line so my commute home is likely to be a slow one. (I have a rucksack with a fully charged iPhone, a book and will pick up a coffee / beer at Gatwick rail station to ease my journey home).

Be safe out there, however you travel.

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The last mile – winter

November 17, 2011

One mile. That’s how far my office is from the railway station.

I’m extremely lucky to have the option of a free shuttle bus, but connecting bus and train doesn’t always work, so it can be easier to walk the mile.

I’d like the freedom of a folding bike, so I don’t need to run the gauntlet of missing a train by waiting for a bus.

I’ll be looking for extreme light weight, single speed, maybe belt drive and a very quick fold – so intend posting some of my thoughts as I research.

Rail Companies and Social Media Engagement

November 16, 2011

Betws y Coed Railway Station, Snowdonia

Venturing back onto the rail network for my new commute, one extra tool in my travel planning box is Twitter.

I use the excellent “UK Train Times” iPhone app by Agant Ltd for rail travel planning. However, for up to the minute status reports and welcome engagement, I follow @SouthernRailUK on Twitter – a company doing the right thing with their customer engagement.

So far, this has made my commuting relatively painless and I enter the dark of winter with a confidence that I won’t be left standing on a cold platform, devoid of information.

 

Commute

October 11, 2011

No longer a 25 minute bike ride, my commute to work is now an hour or so of walk, train, bus, walk.

Depending on the gods of public transport this hour can expand to two or three hours, connecting between bus and train being the biggest variable.

I’m going to explore the Trundlin options for that “last mile” of the journey and share with you.

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Trundlin Swiss Railways style !

August 29, 2008

The trundlin concept implies low rolling resistance, few encounters with queues and officialdom.

Now, Switzerland is not a country that would normally come to mind when thinking about a low incidence of bureaucracy, but the wonderful rail service has a few quirks and features that never fail to awe foreign travellers.

As an an example the ReiseGepack service (or FlyRail as its called on the English language SBB website (www.sbb.ch/en)) is a service that is nerve racking to use at first, but simply works! You check in your hold luggage at your departure rail station, and pick it up when you land at your international destination, simple, efficient and you’re free to trundl along without your heavy bags – ideal if you want to spend the last hours of a break shopping in Geneva or Zurich before you head home.