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Unread 09-01-2007, 13:21   #1
H20
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Default 16:50 To Belfast via Dundalk

Long time lurker here, first time poster...
I'm a commuter on the Dundalk - Pearse line. Having endured the 17.13 Calcutta Express for 6+ years, I was delighted that the 16.50 Enterprise was to begin stopping at Dundalk (albeit long overdue), getting me home 50 mins earlier. Today, I was informed that I would require a boarding pass in order to avail of this service. Furthermore, the application forms for these passes were issued in December! News to me!! Apparantly this is to avoid passengers having to stand on the train - something they have no poroblem with on all other services.
Can anyone shed any of their wisdom on this practice?
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Unread 09-01-2007, 14:38   #2
Mark Gleeson
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This is news to me

So how do I get a pass if I have a normal return ticket??

I'll check the timetable but I'm fairly sure there is no notice of this either

Does anyone have any photos of notices, forms flyers etc with this ??
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Unread 09-01-2007, 15:12   #3
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There is no notice anywhere. First I saw of it was in a freesheet in Dundalk. The 'forms' were withdrawn from circulation. Irish Rail info services claimed the forms did not exist.
Good question re normal return ticket. Reply from IR Customer Services verbatim:
"Only passengers in possession of a valid boarding card will be permitted to board this service next week"
Will try to get my hands on notices etc.
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Unread 10-01-2007, 00:27   #4
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How very odd - are 'boarding passes' issued for any other IÉ services? I've never even heard of them for special services!

This new 16.50 train is a vital gap-filler in the timetable that has been devoid of an early peak service ever since the commuter boom first took off - there was nothing at all serving Dundalk between the leisurely 15.20 afternoon Enterprise and the hell in a teacup that is the 17.13 from Pearse. So it's a fantastic (if grossly belated) innovation - reducing pressure on the 17.13, providing Connolly passengers with the opportunity of a seat in the evenings, and serving early exiters from work.

However a boarding pass is simply bizarre! Is it a four-car 29000 set? (not that this should make an difference). Oddly it doesn't even stop in Drogheda, making it to Dundalk on a congested peak time line in a whopping 53 minutes flat - we can but weep at this potential for other services

The fastest I've ever achieved was a 15.20 Enterprise, including a Drogheda stop, in 48 minutes 12 seconds - if only this was standard...
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Unread 10-01-2007, 00:35   #5
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16:50 goes to Belfast
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Unread 10-01-2007, 01:41   #6
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Ahhhh, that 16.50. The notorious ghost Enterprise that sweeps through the southern stations at the speed of light. Many a life-weary man in his rocking chair has claimed to have heard this service whistling through under the cover of darkness, but never has it been sighted by a living soul...

Okay, so now the boarding pass appears slightly less odd, though still completely inappropriate if restricted to few patrons. This is a service that is urgently needed for Dundalk commuters, Enterprise or otherwise.

So how have IÉ got round the contract with NIR that certain services like the 16.50 must run to Belfast within a two-hour timeframe, as this must surely break it? Or did this stipulation ever even exist?
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Unread 11-01-2007, 10:51   #7
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The plot thickens...
I checked the online timetable for Connolly - Dundalk to see if maybe there was a proviso added re. boarding pass, and the Dundalk stop has disappeared from the 16.50 service!
Maybe a technical glitch but the conspirancy theorist in me says they are trying to "un-publicise" the service for fear of upsetting our Northern friends who were reluctant to allow this stop to happen in the first place.
Regarding the Enterprise service, is this a 50-50 venture between IR and NIR? If so, how come there is one service in each direction catering for NI passengers only?
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Unread 11-01-2007, 11:12   #8
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Its gets more interesting

The NIR timetables for the week starting Jan 22 onwards has the 16:50 calling Dundalk

So published IE timetable says yes
Published small pocket timetable yes
NIR timetable yes
NIR online says yes
IE online says no

I get the feeling I need to take a trip to try this out

Last edited by Mark Gleeson : 11-01-2007 at 11:17.
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Unread 11-01-2007, 17:37   #9
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The plot thickens indeed

Quote:
NOTICE TO DUNDALK CUSTOMERS RE: 16.50 CONNOLLY TO BELFAST SERVICE by Service Planning, Northern and Eastern

11th January 2007



Information for Dundalk customers re: 1650hrs Connolly to Belfast service.

From 15th January coming, our 16.50hrs Connolly to Belfast Enterprise service will stop additionally at Dundalk, at 17.43hrs.

We have been able to introduce this enhancement for Dundalk, following discussions with Translink with whom we jointly operate Enterprise services. Whilst the service will now call at Dundalk, we have had to introduce demand management measures to overcome concerns that the service may become oversubscribed, thus disadvantaging longer distance cross-border customers.

The system we have chosen to manage demand is to issue boarding passes, on application, to regular customers.

With that in mind, in December last we posted information in Dundalk station advising customers of the plan to introduce the Dundalk stop in the service, and invited applications for boarding passes. Having received more applications than available accommodation, we have now issued the boarding passes in favour of annual ticket holders. Indeed, all annual ticket holders who applied for such passes have now been issued with them.

Once the new service comes into operation on Monday next we will be assessing the utilisation of the boarding passes and if sufficient accommodation on the train is available to enable us to issue further passes, we will be pleased to do so.

Customers who wish to apply for boarding passes can complete application forms at Dundalk or Connolly Stations.

Thank you for your understanding and co-operation with these arrangements.
Thats all well and good but represents a failure of management to deal with it professionally, as in a month later we find out while the situation now appears that you will be refused. Of course you cant book a seat on enterprise to Dundalk in either direction
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Unread 11-01-2007, 17:41   #10
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No prizes for guessing where the Northern and Eastern manager lives
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Unread 15-01-2007, 20:02   #11
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Hi,
I mentioned on another thread that I got the 16:50 train. There was quite a few "managers" including the manager for the north and east rail. She was very polite and explained that the conditions are being sought by Translink. However I asked some people on the train and the managers there to actually see the boarding pass but nobody seem to have them!! I was told last friday that if you had an Annual ticket and had filled out the mysterious form that one would be sent out to you in the post! That was confirmed when I arrived at the enterprise queue. They did hold some people until about 10 minutes before departure and then let them on board. There were still quite a few seats free and quite a few people got off in Dundalk, not as many as i have seen on the later three trains but still quite a few. It will be interesting to see how it progresses through the week. Especially on friday!!
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Unread 15-01-2007, 20:13   #12
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Manager for North and East is a Cal Carmicheal most certainly a bloke

Translink's useless maintenance is one the big problem with the enterprise the game of the missing coach is on going as is the game of the brakes jamming on randomly

Word is that some boarding cards went out on Friday know someone who got one today

The enterprise is used as a local train in the North, any passenger going over the border can book so they can't be left behind, note Translink can't deal with seat reservations in the Dublin direction
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Unread 15-01-2007, 20:29   #13
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ooops... I misread the email from her.. She is a/the costumer services officer eastern and northern rail..

The enterprise carriages do seem to need a bit of an upgrade. They remind me of the older intercity trainsn many respects. less room, I'm quite large and I have problems getting into the inner seats, never mind sitting opposite someone as tall as me! I note that the prices in the canteen are also more expensive than other Iarnrod Eireann Intercity services (Translink?)

I have noticed the missing coach on the 7.57 train on occasions..and we had the jamming breaks outside skerries this morning.. usually its much further down the line outside Rush/Lusk - one woman commented that the tree near the water will get hit one morning
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Unread 18-01-2007, 18:55   #14
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Hi,
not sure if this should go here or in another thread... but the 16.50 train to belfast went straight past dundalk. It overshot the platform and braked. there were a few shocked looking faces but everyone took it in good humour! 20 minutes later the train reversed back into Dundalk station. Another fun day on the Enterprise.
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Unread 18-01-2007, 18:58   #15
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You just can't make it up
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Unread 20-01-2007, 00:53   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tigger1962 View Post
I note that the prices in the canteen are also more expensive than other Iarnrod Eireann Intercity services (Translink?)
Don't IE do all they catering? Certainly they have a catering operation in Belfast.
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Unread 20-01-2007, 02:04   #17
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There is a subsidiary company in Belfast, Drubel is the name I think
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Unread 15-02-2007, 16:53   #18
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Thumbs up first come first served

Its now been a month since this service has been running and the "special" pass seems to have gone out the window. The train was quite empty initially but now its back to normal packed service. Its seems the best time to arrive is about 4pm. I arrived at 4.30 today and the q was out the glass doors but then thats probably because they changed the q-ing system. can be bl**dy cold at times though with that wind!

generally it arrives on time and gets to dundalk on time... it is quite funny watching all those running off the train to get their cars before the daily jam at the exit in Dundalk! Fridays are mental butthen thats to be expected! Overall as a daily commuter I can't complain too much about this service as its nice to get home before 6

me
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Unread 16-02-2007, 15:04   #19
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Incidentally the online timetable now lists the 16:50 as stopping but you still can't book Dublin Dundalk, you can book Dublin Newry and Dundalk Newry
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Unread 16-02-2007, 15:30   #20
Colm Donoghue
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There might be another advertising standards complaint right there.

Class one with regtel.
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