Advantages Fine if able bodied
Disadvantages Problem for people travelling with wheelchairs or babies which can't yet walk.
|Frequency of trains|
|Reliability of trains|
|Speed of trains|
|Safety of trains|
|How extensive is their Rail Network?|
|How well does it cater for disabled people?|
I travelled with my baby from Kings Cross to Peterborough. I opted for the more expensive GNER rather than the slower cross country train.
I had real problems with my baby and her pushchair. On the way I was able to get my friend to hold my daughter whilst I folded the chair (which was hard in the tiny space in the aisle), stowed it and sat down.
On the return journey the train was 15 min late and less than a minute at the station and I couldn't put my baby on a seat to fold the pushchair due to the slamming self closing door (and the distance I would have been from the baby to stow the chair meant she could have rolled off the seat whilst I tried). So we had to stand the whole 45 minutes swaying dangerously in the space outside the toilet. Other intercity trains like Midland Mainline have pull-down seats for people with pushchairs to sit on in the spaces between the carridges, and both South West and South Eastern Intercity trains have special single seats in areas near the toilets for people with pushchairs.
I thought that having no provision for people travelling with babies but standing was quite dangerous, particularly at the speed the train was travelling.
So GNER if the UK is keen to get people off the roads and onto trains - you might like to cater for young families. Next time I go to Peterborough with the baby I shall take the slow train with First Capital Connect which will be safer.
We travel a lot on the trains and are very adept at folding the pushchair which is small and manoverable but GNER defeated us.
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Pages: 48, Edition: 1st, Paperback, Passmore Edwards Museum
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