Today, representing Railfuture, myself and Railfuture Board Member Allison Cosgrove met LNER to discuss this controversial issue. We still don’t agree with what LNER are doing (does anyone?) but it was a useful meeting, which allowed us to understand more of their vision and where they aspire to be in terms of customer service. So thanks to Matthew Trigg and Mike Ross for giving us the time, and always useful to meet in person and build relationships. But we just don’t think compulsory seat reservations will work – particularly in times of disruption (ie an entire train cancelled), and re-iterated our concerns that not everyone has the option to “not travel”. After the meeting (held outside on Newcastle Station’s concourse), I had a 2-hour wait for a train home, thanks to Northern removing the 15:59 train from the timetable, allegedly temporairily, but being unable to define exactly what the problem is, or when it will be re-instated. The 2-hour gap is of course followed by 3 trains to Morpeth within 13 minutes as Northern, LNER and CrossCountry then all run at the same time – but that’s another story. And during this enforced 2-hour wait on Newcastle’s concourse another poster caught my eye. This from LNER saying passengers are now limited to just 3 items of luggage, and giving maximum sizes for each bag. Goodness, LNER seem to think the way to win over air passengers is to enthusiastically adopt all the negative points of air travel, and remove all those features that make it much more convenient. They’ll be introducing “priority boarding” fees next!