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Empty seats, Nodding Donkeys and buses
This has been a tough weekend ... with a mountain of Well House Consultants and Well House Manor issues to be dealt with, but with my eyes off that ball rather more than they should have been because of all the events going on with 'the train'. Friday, and the last commuter service. Saturday, the Santa special. And then Sunday, frankly, exhausted to achieve what I needed to do. Oh well - everyone needs a break. Today started - my goodness - on the 06:48, back at Melksham at 07:17 to see how the service was doing.
The 06:19 off Swindon was pretty quiet - just 3 passengers into Melksham where 3 more (myself include) joined.
The 07:08 from Trowbridge was much busier - you can see the passengers here in one of the two coaches of the "nodding donkey" - the Pacer train that appeared on the service for - I think - the first time this morning. I've seen Pacers referred to as "the most hated trains around" because of the rough ride but .. .there WERE passengers on board. It was rather harder to find anyone who'll be on the return journey tonight, and I worry about the loading.
If you want to travel to Swindon at any time other that around quarter past 7, or 8 at night, you now need to take the bus. I did this with the HTV camera crew this morning, and got soaked. Meeting them at 07:30 at Melksham station, I got onto the train at Chippenham that was due into Swindon at 09:10 - a sad journey when, last week, the 07:45 train would have had me there by 08:15. Picture - on the bus with a group of college kids who said it was the most exciting morning for them in an age, and were asking the film crew many questions ... as they (the kids) are doing media studies.
Oh - and I was cold, wet and definitely well exercised too!
Footnote / Background.
We have encouraged our customers to use the train service to reach our Melksham training centre over the years, and we've seen a service that's grown dramatically - compound growth of between 7% and 35% per annum depending on which measure you take. That wasn't enough for the powers that be, and the service was slashed last weekend to just 2 trains each way daily, and those at times for which I personally can't see much of a market. At Well House Consultants, we've sponsored the save the train web site
to campaign for an appropriate service in the full knowledge, it must be said, that we only had a slim chance of changing the view of the remote and faceless decison makers .... but if you don't try ... (written 2006-12-11, updated 2006-12-21)
Associated topics are indexed as below, or enter http://melksh.am/nnnn for individual articlesG504 - Well House Consultants - Writing Notes 
Showing what programming errors look like - web site pitfall - (2013-03-06) 
Clear, concise examples - Ruby classes and objects. - (2013-02-17) 
Jargon busting - (2011-01-30) 
Sharing our programs - easy. Sharing our data - harder. - (2010-06-26) 
What is Perl? - (2010-06-15) 
Sample code with errors in it on our web site - (2009-10-29) 
Hello World - a good traditional start to a Java course - (2009-09-22) 
Copy writing - allowing for the cut - (2009-05-21) 
How long should a training module be? - (2009-01-27) 
Copyright of Training Notes and Web Site - (2008-12-18) 
Notes from the white board - (2006-12-14) 
Writing up new C / C++ notes. - (2006-07-09) 
Theft of training material - (2005-08-09) 
Training course material - why we write our own - (2005-07-30) 
A year on - should we offer certified PHP courses - (2005-07-28) 
Study room - the Oxford train - (2004-08-10) 
Writing on a Sunday - (2004-08-08) 
Seeing the wood for the trees. - (2004-08-06)
Some other Articles
Blessing in Perl / Member variable in RubyFinalist reception - Wiltshire Business of the YearStreet SceneEmpty seats, Nodding Donkeys and busesWellhouse Manor, Hotel, MelkshamMelksham and NorwichSanta at the stationAnswering ALL the delegate's Perl questionsThe last commuter train through Melksham
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