St Albans commuter designs website to track Thameslink services

PUBLISHED: 10:13 27 June 2018 | UPDATED: 11:40 27 June 2018

St Albans City Station. Picture: Danny Loo.

St Albans City Station. Picture: Danny Loo.

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A St Albans commuter has designed a website to track Thameslink services, after the operator began removing cancelled services from the timetable.

Mark Wherity has created On Time Trains to help passengers figure out whether they can claim Delay Repay - Govia Thameslink Railway’s means of compensating customers if their train is late by more than 15 minutes.

Mr Wherity said: “It is like a bit of a hobby as I do IT at work and it was a chance to do something a bit different and show people how bad things were.

“Around December 2016 was a particularly bad time for Thameslink as they had a driver shortage, so it was a way of showing how good or bad things were to hold operators to account.”

As well as showing whether trains have been delayed, it also allows customers to find out if the train they were supposed to catch was late enough to make passengers eligible for Delay Repay, and the website ranks stations on service punctuality and cancellation frequency.

Since December last year, St Albans City has gone from being the 297th best station in the country to 1,778th.

Mr Wherity said: “I know from St Albans it has been pretty poor, but over the last year or so it has been very good.”

The decline in the rankings for St Albans City follows a timetable change on Sunday, May 20 which led to commuters complaining of cancellations, delays and overcrowding on Govia Thameslink Railway services.

On Time Trains has been used by The Sunday Times as a source for a story on Transport Secretary Chris Grayling trying to dodge responsibility for the train chaos, which has engulfed Thameslink, Great Northern and Northern services.

It also takes into account Thameslink’s updated delay repay policy which allows passengers to alternatively claim against the original May 2018 timetable.

On Time Trains is powered by open data made available to the public by National Rail and Network Rail and can take into account emergency timetables in effect on a particular day, as well as trains which have been overtaken.

The website provides a link for users to go straight to the Delay Repay page once they have figured out if they are eligible.

To find out more, visit www.ontimetrains.co.uk

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