Harringay online

Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

I was wondering where the use of Oyster pay-as-you-go at Harringay and Hornsey stations has got to. The only info turned up by search engines seems to be on Lynne Featherstone's site. (Good for her). By her account, the latest update is as follows:

Local residents in Haringey will have to wait an extra four months after a train company broke promises last week on introducing Oyster Pay As You Go (PAYG) on local trains. First Capital Connect (FCC), which runs the Overground train line north of Finsbury Park, recently agreed that train users would be able to use PAYG from September this year; but this has now been delayed until at least January 2010.

The disappointing news comes following a long running campaign spearheaded by Hornsey and Wood Green MP Lynne Featherstone, that culminated in assurances from Transport for London, Mayor Boris Johnson and First Capital Connect that local trains would ‘go Oyster’ by September 2009. Lynne has now written to the three organisations demanding an explanation for the delays and an apology to local residents for the extra wait.

Tags for Forum Posts: oyster, pay as you go, public transport, tfl, trains

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Thanks for flagging this up Hugh. Harringay is my local station, just a minute's walk away. It's truly ridiculous that this service for the public is not up and running. The machines themselves were installed months ago.

I believe the absence of service turns on an inability to agree as to how the revenue is shared between, presumably, the railway company and Transport for London.

The dispute could go on indefinitely. This lunacy would not exist, but for the fact that we have a partly privatised system.

This is a case of heads needing to be banged together by a greater force.

I agree - the physical infrasructure has been there for months now but no one seems to be able to agree when to plug it in. Could have a bit of mass Oystercard disobedience - just all turn up waving the bit of blue plastic and see what happens.
This is crazy. I hardly ever use this line, precisely because I can't use my oyster card on it - I have to queue up at Old St otherwise to get a ticket and it just isn't worth the hassle. I like the mass disobedience idea!
Hear Hear! That's what you should do. One of the good things about being 60+, you don't have an Oyster you can't use.

London TravelWatch has expressed fury as it has become clear that the roll-out of Oyster Pay As You Go on national rail services in London is being delayed to 2010.

Sharon Grant, Chair, London TravelWatch, said: “We are dismayed that, yet again, the introduction of Oyster Pay As You Go is to be delayed on national rail services in London, meaning passengers will continue to have to use two separate methods of payment on transport in London. As well as being confusing for passengers, it is blatantly unfair on those who live outside the tube network who are not reaping the price benefits of the Oystercard. These delays have occurred time and again over the years.

“Passengers at railway stations around the capital are walking past covered up, unused Oyster machines every day, and have been for months. The lack of an integrated system and any joined-up thinking is ridiculous in a modern city like London. Another delay is simply unacceptable, and it is time for the Department for Transport to hold the transport providers to account.”
Since Lynne Featherstone's blog was about the only place that Google dug up on this issue I dropped her a note to ask what the latest is. Below is her reply, reproduced with her permission:

Dear Hugh

It's a bit of a long-running saga to tell you the truth. The month when the system will go live keeps being pushed into the future.

The latest I have heard from First Capital Connect is that we're now looking at January 2010 as the earliest date, and fingers crossed it will happen then.

I guess the main problem is the fact that so many different agencies have to work together to enable the system to work, and that is causing delays (which they tend to blame on each other).

The most recent correspondence I had from FCC was in mid June, and if you send me your full postal address I'll send you a copy for your information.

Let me know if you have any other questions.

Kind regards,

Lynne Featherstone
Member of Parliament for Hornsey and Wood Green
020 8340 5459
Through the letterbox this morning from Lynne Featherstone came a copy of the letter to her from First Capital Connect. Whilst it doesn't say much, I'm not seeing huge dollops of hope between the lines. Letter attached below.
WELL, its news to me that the "Oyster software" needs to be developed. It seems to be working elsewhere in London. What about at Finsbury Park station, one stop down the line from me – its working there all right.

Thanks for uploading FCC's letter. That letter betrays a lack of urgency and a lack of enthusiasm. It sounds like something that First Capital Connect is obliged to do rather than something they want to do. And the letter reads as though this was some surprise requirement, rather than something that's been dragging on and on and on. Late last year we were told September (for Harringay station) and now its January 2010 at the earliest.

It is a disgrace.

Graham this is a helpful post in shedding some light on this problem.

I agree that it's the politicians that are the problem here, but perhaps more so those politicians who in the first place thought that privatising the railway network was a great idea. What you're implying, are you not, is that this dispute could drag on and on.

When you say the Oyster card extension is politically popular – it is also popular with every single Londoner ... except those connected with these private contractors.

All of this – the extension of Oyster card coverage to be London-wide – should have been foreseen.

The rate of progress is not fast enough. If knocking heads together cannot work, maybe re-nationalisation is the only way forward?




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