Take back the railway

 

Managers throughout the industry are currently only too keen to share their fears about the threat to the very future of the railway as we have known it, due to the current crisis. Yet publicly managers throughout the industry have been resigned to obeying the destructive diktat of the Department for Transport that public transport should be used only as a last resort.

Covid precautions: messages on the escalators at Reading station linking the south west entrance with the transfer deck. Stuart Hicks

We make no apology for returning to the topic of last month’s ‘Railtalk’. If anything has changed, it is for the worse. There is still no sign of encouragement for passengers to return to rail. As we went to press train operators’ online ticketing websites were still headed ‘Is your journey really necessary?’. On one site, would-be travellers had to tick boxes to show that they understood the ‘rules’. Another had a different set of tick boxes including:

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