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Letter: Late trains

Sir: Your report (16 January) that more trains are running late since privatisation will come as no surprise to those who have to use them. However what we are not told is the number of passengers who arrive late.

Trains are officially "late" if they arrive more than five minutes late at their final destination. Trains are often scheduled to have quite leisurely waits at intermediate stations, to allow for lost time. Thus a passenger can well arrive at his station ten minutes late but the train will be within the deadline at the end of its journey, and will not be counted as late.

If a connection is missed because one train is late at an intermediate station, the passenger can well be delayed by an hour or more; yet it is likely that none of the trains involved will be counted as "late".


Twickenham, Middlesex