Back in 2013, I was making one my regular train trips to London when I suddenly realised that I was enjoying the journey. Eventually, it occurred to me that this very unfamiliar feeling was the result of a broken PA system on the train. Wouldn’t it be great if all trains were this quiet, I thought.
Out came the laptop…..
Silly, I know, but I was bored.
29th March 2013
East Coast Customer Relations
Dear Customer Relations,
I really like East Coast. I think you are much better than the National Railway Museum because their collection of really old trains doesn’t go anywhere whereas yours somtimes does. Also, the National Railway Museum doesn’t do bacon toasties.
I was on one of your old trains this week. It was so old that it didn’t have any speakers for the train guard to make announcements (or perhaps it did but they were broken). Anyway, it was ever so peaceful without all those noisy announcements.
It occurred to me that it would be a really good idea to remove all the speakers from all your trains. Journeys would so be much nicer and you would make lots of extra money from making all the people who get on the wrong train with weekend-super-saver-off-peak-discount tickets buy a new one at full fare!
Then you will be able to buy even more really old trains! How cool would that be!
Surprisingly, when I returned from my trip, I remembered to print and post the letter.
Alas, East Coast weren’t quite ready to stop pissing off their customers with a constant barrage of loud, largely pointless and utterly irritating announcements:
8th April 2013
Thank you for your letter received on 2nd April 2013.
I note with interest your suggestion about removing the speakers from all our trains to provide a quieter journey experience. Regrettably, we are unable to put this into practice because this is our way of passing across information to customers.
We value all of the comments that we receive about our services and hold regular Service Review Meetings to consider them, so your comments will be passed on.
I am delighted to hear that you are so pleased with the service of our Historic Trains. Everyone here at East Coast is working hard to improve the service we provide for our customers. Our aim is to provide the best possible journey experience for East Coast customers and it is very pleasing to get feedback that shows we have had some success.
Thank you again for taking the time to write. I will pass your comments to everyone involved. I am sure that will be as delighted as I am to hear that we are getting it right.
Customer Relations Advisor