John Hemming's Web Log John's Reference Website
Thursday, February 04, 2010
  Video of 41 bus question

John O Shea has said there was something wrong with the phrasing of the question. What exactly is wrong with this:

“At the weekend, National Express group cancelled without consultation the number 41 bus in Birmingham, causing major problems for people in Birmingham.”

“This is symptomatic of a national problem. When will the rest of the country be allowed to use the same system for bus management as exists in London?”


The good news is that we are close now to having a proposal for a replacement service. However, this should not have happened in the first instance.
 
Comments:
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In the light of the second part of the question this is quite clear. In any event you would not expect consultation just for one bus to be cancelled.

It does, however, demonstrate that this is a national problem.
 
Just looking at the question the two things that leap out at me are that there's a statement of the cancellation of a service being 'symptomatic of a national problem' without a definition of what problem is being referred to or evidence of the problem or why this is a symptom of it, and there is a presumption int he question that at some point in the future the rest of the country will be able to use the same system of bus management as London (whatever that system is).

I don't use the 41 service so cannot comment on it.

I have noticed on a number of services (mostly the 37 but that's the service I use the most so obviously I'm more likely to notice things relating to that service) that there seems to have been a reduction in services run by TWM (i.e. National Express Group), that will accept bus passes, which are replaced by independent companies that either do not accept passes at all or only accept the more expensive 'Network' passes which also cover train and Metro travel. This is, I admit, a purely subjective and non-quantitative observation. Might this be related to this undefined national problem?
 
The national problem (outside London) is that there is in fact relatively little bus regulation.

That is also behind what happens with the passes.

In questions of the prime minister there is a limit as to how much detailed analysis can be spoken of.
 
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