Don’t be smug in the snow, Boris

A lovely day to be out and about if you didn’t have anything too pressing to do – unfortunately for many, the last Saturday before Christmas doesn’t fall into that category. I enjoyed my birds-eye view by bus of Blackheath in the snow, though, and walking through Greenwich Park was great fun.

But… oh-oh, it’s Boris! On Twitter!

http://twitter.com/#!/MayorOfLondon/statuses/16127231780724736

Ignoring the fact that none of this goes down well in areas of London not served by the Tube, it was blatantly nonsense anyway…

…with Brent Cross shopping centre also forced to close. Not “open for Christmas shopping”, then.

Of course, he – or whichever PR person operates his Twitter feed – has form for talking crap like this – remember last year’s south London snowfall, which went almost completely unacknowledged by Boris or TfL?

As for the buses – some are working, some aren’t. It’s a bit hit and miss, but the fewer hills and the fewer back roads you’re on, the better chance you have of getting anywhere. But don’t go expecting to find info on those that aren’t working. For example, route 386…

…which is actually very much disrupted, not serving the leg between Blackheath Standard, Greenwich town centre and Blackheath Village because of the slippery conditions. In fact, here’s a 386 looking sorry for itself at Blackheath Standard about 45 minutes ago.

So why isn’t TfL distributing this kind of information about buses? Its controllers know where buses are turning around, so why can’t this information be shared with the public?

Indeed, one London bus operator does it on its own initiative – Metrobus, which runs a collection of south London routes, particularly around Bromley, Croydon and Orpington, was regularly updating its Facebook page with lists of what was running and what wasn’t.

So if it’s easy for one firm to do this, why can’t TfL do it centrally? Maybe if it did that, the chairman of Transport for London, a Mr Boris Johnson, might be able to look at it and then think again before crowing about how well he thinks TfL is doing in the snow.

3 comments

  1. Agreed. And all this bollocks about how it could snow for 24hrs and we’ve got loads of grit in reserves… that’s all very well up to a certain point, as my walk to Eastcote tube station proved. The non-existent 282 bus (our only bus through to the next civilisations in Northwood, Pinner or Northolt) also threw the same lack of information at me, despite waiting 40 minutes to try and get to Northolt for a Central line to get to work.. (as the Met and Jubilee were suspended in my neck of the woods).

    Thankfully, the Met line pulled through for me to get me to Finchley Road, and after 2hrs I’ve finally made it to North Greenwich, albeit an hour late for my duty, but I’ve made it. Whether or not I get home tonight is another thing. I might be sleeping in the station tonight…

    Walking around in the bus station now, there seems to be an awful lot of people standing around not really doing much, probably contemplating their best options. One of my colleagues called up to say his bus to Thamesmead took 2hrs30mins!

  2. Bejaysus! I just came home through North Greenwich, on the trusty 108 (whose driver did ace work in getting a clutch of punters from that into a 472). Please say you’re not still there…

  3. It was pretty bad last night, but I managed to get home around 3.30AM. The cab I was in however nearly had an unfortunate accident when we drifted going around a roundabout coming off the A40 northbound. There were also 3 hills to negotiate, covered in slush, but ‘lo, he got me about half-a-mile away from home, so the trek wasn’t too bad (I had my trusty Doc Martens boots on last night).

    As it happens, I’m now on the Metropolitan line part of my journey into work. The Jubilee line is dubiously running a ‘good service’, though having rung up a colleague on my way in, he says we’re running a ‘special service’ that is temperamental at best. So I’ve another night of leaving Simply Red fans locked outside the station for crowd control. And I doubt that thoughts of an ageing Mick Hucknall is going to keep anybody warm…

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