Brent and Harrow
5 May 2016 Vote for
Sadiq Khan Mayor of London
Navin Shah GLA Brent & Harrow
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Navin's News: TfL

Boris condemns commuters to another 1% rise in fares next year

The Mayor of London has today (Thursday) announced another 1% rise in fares from January 2016. The latest fares hike means that since he was elected in 2008 fares will have gone up by 42%, which is 13% above inflation, by the time he stands down next year.

Alongside the fares hike the Mayor also announced the extension of free travel for under 11s to include rail services in the capital, currently travel is only free on TfL run buses, tubes and overground lines. The policy comes after Val Shawcross AM called for its introduction earlier this year.

As a result of the Mayor’s announcement fares from next year will rise as follows:

-          Bus and Tram Pay as You Go – up 67% to £1.50 – a £0.60 rise since 2008

-          PAYG TfL Rail Services Zone 1 – up 60% to £2.40 – a £0.90 rise since 2008

-          Zone 1-2 monthly travel card – up 34% to £124.50 – a £31.50 rise since 2008

-          Zone 1-3 monthly travel card – up 34% to £146 – a £36.90 rise since 2008

-          Zone 1-4 annual travel card – up 34% to £178.60 – a £45.70 rise since 2008

-          Zone 1-6 monthly travel card – up 33% to £227 – a £55.70 rise since 2008

By increasing adult fares yet again Boris Johnson has dealt a parting blow to Londoners who have already had to contend with astronomical fare rises during his mayoralty. We’ve witnessed astonishing levels of hypocrisy from a Mayor who once said he’d lower fares in the long term, but has bumped them up by over 40% during his time in office.

Commuters in the capital will be left bewildered as to why they have seen their fares rise year after year whilst there has been so little investment in the transport projects that London actually needs. Prices may have gone up but our buses remain overcrowded and the Tube upgrade is lagging significantly behind schedule.

Boris Johnson has repeatedly brushed off calls to freeze fares, and by doing so has subjected hard pressed commuters to years of rising travel costs with absolutely no respite. Whilst the extension of free travel for under 11s is welcome it will do little to help hard pressed commuters in Brent and Harrow.

 

ENDS

 

Notes

 

-          Val Shawcross AM called for free travel to be extended to children using the train network in August 2015 – full details available here. At the time Train Operators welcomed the proposals and said they would work with the Mayor to consider the scheme.

 

-          Full details of the Mayor’s fares announcement are available here.

-          A TfL map showing which above ground London train routes allow free travel for 5 -10 year olds is available here.

Permanent link to this article
12th November 2015

Mayor disregards Harrow-on-the-Hill petition

By Navin Shah AM

I am extremely disappointed’ by the Mayor of London’s response to the 500-signature strong petition submitted last March regarding the lack of accessibility at Harrow-on-the-Hill station.

The petition I submitted at the London Plenary meeting in March, stated that residents and visitors to Harrow want the Mayor of London to restore funding, previously agreed with the former Mayor and TfL, to make Harrow-on-the-Hill fully accessible and integrated with Harrow Bus Station.

Over 500 residents signed the petition.

DSC_0161.JPG

 

The response to the petition, sent by Deputy Mayor for Transport, Isabel Dedring, said: “The Mayor recognises that there is more to do to further enhance the accessibility of London’s transport system.

“Harrow-on-the-Hill has been identified in this plan as being in an area for the LU network which should be considered for additional step-free access provision.”

I will continue to lobby the Mayor about this as residents really need and want Harrow-on-the-Hill station to be accessible for them. I am extremely disappointed with the Mayor’s decision, as I’m sure those who signed the petition will be as well.

The £25 million of investment for regeneration and step-free access to Harrow-on-the-Hill Station that the Mayor of London cut in 2008 is desperately needed to make this station a viable transport hub.

One in ten Londoners are excluded from large parts of the transport network because of mobility issues and in Harrow only 4 tube and rail stations out of 14 have step-free access. This is not good enough.

Cllr Sue Anderson, lead petitioner, said: “I was really disappointed to find that despite the campaign to get step-free access for Harrow-on-the-Hill promised to us by the Labour Mayoral candidate Ken Livingstone, Boris hasn’t made any such commitment.”

Tube ticket office opening hours slashed in Brent

Hypocrisy in Action

Today, as the changes come into effect, I condemn Boris Johnson's decision to slash ticket office opening hours in Brent. Ticket offices in the borough were cut by 574 hours and 15 minutes a week  on Sunday.

The changes come despite Mayor Boris Johnson's election promise to "defend local ticket offices" and "stop the planned ticket office closures". In his 2008 election manifesto, the mayor said he would ensure "there is always a manned ticket office at every station". Instead in Brent:

  • 14 stations times are changing
  • Significantly reduced weekend opening times at a number of stations
  • 51% average reduction of opening hours at affected stations
  • No ticket offices open after 7.30pm on a weekday or weekend (apart from Wembley Park)
  • Sudbury Town will be open for 15 hours 45 mins a week only (reduced from 38 and a half hours) (60% reduction)

 Across London opening hours are being cut by 30 per cent  - or 5,290 hours a week.

Boris_page_pic1.jpg

The mayor was elected on a clear promise to keep ticket offices open yet here he is cutting far more than anything that was planned before. Passengers will feel less safe and more vulnerable in the daytime and late at night as a direct consequence of the mayor's broken promises.

Transport for All, a charity who campaign on behalf of disabled passengers, have warned that the changes will make stations even less accessible.

Transport trade unions say the cuts will turn stations into a "criminal's paradise", making them more dangerous and leaving passengers - especially female passengers - more vulnerable to crime and anti-social behaviour. The TSSA union recently pointed to an assault which allegedly took place on an unmanned station.

TfL announced last March that 450 ticket office jobs would be cut as a result of the proposed changes. Negotiations over the job losses are on-going and one of the unions involved has accused the mayor of "jumping the gun" by pressing ahead with the ticket office cuts while the dispute is unresolved.

You can find out about the changes at your station in the table below:

Ticket office

Mon-Fri

Current

Mon-Fri

Proposed

Saturday

Current

Saturday

Proposed

Sunday

Current

Sunday

Proposed

Alperton 

0630-1400 & 1530-2000

0645-1115

0730-1830

1045-1415

0900-2100

1100-1200

Colindale

0645-1900

0645-14-00 & 1715-1830

0800-1800

0900-1545

0900-1800

0930-1530

Dollis Hill

0630-1900

0700-1000

0800-1800

1215-1315

0930-1800

1130-1400

Kilburn

0600-2200

0645-1930

0700-2200

0845-1800

0730-2200

0945-1715

Kilburn Park

0630-2000

0700-1315 & 1515-1830

0800-2030

0830-1900

0900-2000

0945-1600

Kingsbury

0630-1400 & 1530-2000

0645-1030

0900-1430

1045-1230

10000-1830

1100-1300

Neasden

0600-1430 & 1530-2000

0645-1030

0700-1900

0900-1300

1000-1900

1000-1400

Northwick Park

0615-1930

0730-1015 & 1530-1815

0800-1600

1000-1345

0930-1630

1000-1200

Preston Road

0600-2000

0645-1130

0800-2000

0930-1445

0830-1830

1115-1245

Queensbury

0630-1300 & 1530-1930

0645-1015

0800-1430

1000-1100

1000-2100

1000-1130 & 1700-1800

Sudbury Hill

0630-1230 & 1600-2000

0715-0915

0800-1530

1130-1230

0900-2100

1100-1300

Sudbury Town

0630-1130

0700-0945

0800-1400

1130-1230

0930-2200

1000-1100

Wembley Park

0530-2330

0615-2300

0630-0000

0630-0000

0800-2330

0745-2315

Willesden Green

0600-2200

0615-1930

0630-2200

0830-1845

0730-2300

0930-1900

 

How are the changes affecting you? Please let me know by contacting me here.

Permanent link to this article
7th February 2011

Tube ticket office opening slashed in Harrow

Hypocrisy in Action

Today, as the changes take effect, I condemn Boris Johnson's decision to slash ticket office opening hours in Harrow. Ticket offices in the borough were cut by 224 hours and 15 mins a week (57% of opening hours at affected stations) on Sunday.

The changes come despite Mayor Boris Johnson's election promise to "defend local ticket offices" and "stop the planned ticket office closures". In his 2008 election manifesto, the mayor said he would ensure "there is always a manned ticket office at every station" and he visited the borough to sign the petition at North Harrow. Instead in Harrow:

  • 8 stations times are changing
  • 57% average reduction of opening hours at affected stations
  • Pinner station will only be open for 15 hours and 45 mins a week (as opposed to 54 hours a week) – a 70% reduction

Across London opening hours are being cut by 30 per cent  - or 5,290 hours a week.

Boris_page_pic1.jpg

The mayor was elected on a clear promise to keep ticket offices open yet here he is cutting far more than anything that was planned before. Passengers will feel less safe and more vulnerable in the daytime and late at night as a direct consequence of the mayor's broken promises. 

Transport for All, a charity who campaign on behalf of disabled passengers, have warned that the changes will make stations even less accessible.

Transport trade unions say the cuts will turn stations into a "criminal's paradise", making them more dangerous and leaving passengers - especially female passengers - more vulnerable to crime and anti-social behaviour. The TSSA union recently pointed to an assault which allegedly took place on an unmanned suburban station, West Finchley.

TfL announced last March that 450 ticket office jobs would be cut as a result of the proposed changes. Negotiations over the job losses are on-going and one of the unions involved has accused the mayor of "jumping the gun" by pressing ahead with the ticket office cuts while the dispute is unresolved.

You can find a table of the changes below:

 

Ticket office

Mon-Fri

Current

Mon-Fri

Proposed

Saturday

Current

Saturday

Proposed

Sunday

Current

Sunday

Proposed

Harrow & Wealdstone (East)

No change

 

 

 

 

 

Harrow & Wealdstone (West)

No change

 

 

 

 

 

Harrow-on-the-Hill

0600-2215

0615-2030

0700-2200

0815-2015

0745-2200

0845-2000

North Harrow

0630-1030

0700-1000

1000-1400

1200-1300

1100-1600

1100-1200

Pinner

 

0630-1130 & 1600-1930

0715-1000

0900-1630

1100-1200

1000-2000

1300-1400

Queensbury

 

0630-1300 & 1530-1930

0645-1015

0800-1430

1000-1100

1000-2100

1000-1130 & 1700-1800

Rayners Lane

0600-2030

0645-1315 & 1615-1845

0800-2000

0930-1515

0900-2030

0930-1430

South Harrow

0630-1300 &1600-1930

0715-0945

0900-1600

1100-1300

0930-1930

1115-1330

Stanmore

0615-1930

0645-1330 & 1530-1915

0800-1900

0830-1830

0900-1900

0845-1830

West Harrow

0715-1030

0715-1000

closed

closed

closed

Closed

   

 

Permanent link to this article
7th February 2011

The Metropolitan Line: Higher Fares: Stagnant Service

 If, like me, you rely on the Metropolitan Line to commute into London, you may have become increasingly frustrated at the reliability of the service this winter.

The final straw for me came on Wednesday January the 19th, when delays due to a power failure involving a new S-stock train at Uxbridge made me late for a Plenary meeting of the London Assembly called to question the Mayor and his Transport Commissioner, Peter Hendy, on Transport for London's performance. I was seething by the time I arrived!

There are apparently rumours circulating that that delay, was due to the new rolling stock being "too heavy" for the gradient leaving Uxbridge. I received a very fast response from TfL when I put this to them:

"There is absolutely no truth in it whatsoever.  The failure at Uxbridge was caused when a new train hit a lineside obstruction, knocking the ‘shoe gear’ off the train. The ‘shoe gear’ is what picks up current from the live rail.  The train then came to a halt and couldn’t pick up power.  We got a second S stock to tow the damaged train out of the way and removed the obstruction, so the new trains are now happily running along that branch in regular service."

Happily they may be running, but the Uxbridge incident came two days after a huge signal failure at Baker Street caused chaos on the Met and the Jubilee could go no further north than Willesden.

By this time I had already put some questions into the Mayor about the large number of delays (415 in total!) in December. While an increase was to be expected, given the bad weather, I was surprised to note many more were due to mechanical and human failures (see table below).

Cause Incidents
Severe Weather 24
Signalling Equipment Failures 63
Train failure in service 84
Train failure in depot 47
Other Operational Reasons 16
Staff Absence or Shortage 88
Staff Industrial Action 2
Customer Actions 26
Track & Civils Defects 19
Staff Errors 32
External Causes 7
Defective Station Equipment 4
Security Alerts 3
Total 415
 This table only confirms my belief North West Londoners pay more and more in fares for a stagnating service. After the two years of weekend closures on the Jubilee, combined with intermittent works on the Metropolitan and Bakerloo line, it is difficult to believe the long-term gains in service justify the not so short-term, ongoing inconveniences.

I would urge all affected passengers to contact Transport for London for a refund. Not only are you entitled to it but as delays begin to cost Transport for London money, we may see effots to minimise these delays. TfL will refund all journeys with a delays over 15 minutes that are inside of their control, i.e. not weather or security related or caused by an external party. So 381 of December's delays would be eligible!

You can apply online for a refund here.

Permanent link to this article
31st January 2011

Who "independently assessed" the slope at Stanmore?

While the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, maintains that the steep slope at Stanmore station legally constitutes "disabled access", the independent assessment of this is increasingly under fire.

Last June, you may have seen an interview in the Harrow Observer with Justin Frishberg, a member of the London Wheelchair Rugby Club which trains at ASPIRE's facility in Stanmore. Justin detailed his experiences of Stanmore illustrating it is not just the ramp but the whole environment that is difficult for wheelchair users.

As Alex Rankin of ASPIRE said in that interview:

 "It's incredibly misleading to have that wheelchair symbol sign on Stanmore station.

"The wheelchair accessible ramp just isn't accessible for wheelchair users. It's far too long, the road is in such a poor condition and it's exposing people to danger. It is frustrating for anybody coming up to use Aspire or the hospital."

I'm of little doubt the issue at Stanmore illustrates the difficulties around a legal definition of 'disabled access', as first defined in the Disability Discrimination Act and now guided by the Equality Act 2010. Accessible in law doesn't necessarily equal accessible for all in practise, yet Transport for London's assessment is based on compliance with the law. We need a shift to focus on user's needs, not the bare legal minimum.

But the gradient of the slope is not the only problem at Stanmore. As users know, the car park is not open during the day time, and the disabled spot often used. I put these problems to the Mayor in a recent question:

Thank you for your response to Question No: 3660 / 2010. As you stated: “It should be noted that there is already a step-free route to and from the platforms at Stanmore using a ramp (which has been independently assessed as complying fully with British Standards) via the car park.” Unfortunately, the car park is closed during the daytime so step-free route is completely useless. Would you agree for a TfL representative to meet me at the station to fully discuss the options as soon as possible?

Answer by Boris Johnson

TfL is of course more than happy to meet you at Stanmore station to discuss the current accessibility arrangements in place and I understand that this meeting has now been set up.

 

It is true that, because Stanmore car park is heavily used, there are occasions when the NCP attendant responsible for the car park may temporarily prevent access for cars for a limited period during the day in the event of all the spaces already being taken. This is to prevent unnecessary congestion in the car park.

 

However, access for pedestrians requiring a step-free route is still available at all times. In addition, the car park should always remain open for mobility impaired customers to be dropped off or picked up even when the car park is full. If you are aware of any incidents when this has not been the case, please pass the details on to TfL who will investigate and take appropriate action.

 

What strikes me most about this response is the lack of imagination at Transport for London. No mention is made of interchange, it is presumed passengers with access issues will get to Stanmore by car, and Transport for London do not admit that the long walk from the bus stop to the car park entrance only compounds difficulties for those with mobility issues. A meeting has been set up between Transport for London, the Stanmore Society, ASPIRE, the Disability Foundation, the RNOH, the local MP, myself and consituents who have contacted me about access to the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital. I will of course report on the  outcome here.

In the meantime, you can find Transport for London's step-free access guide, which contains more information on Stanmore and all legally denoted 'step-free' stations, here (opens PDF).

Permanent link to this article
24th January 2011