Remember this?

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, today announced a deal between Transport for London (TfL) and First Great Western that will extend Oyster pay as you go to all London stations served by First Great Western from September 2008.

Thousands more passengers using these routes will be able to enjoy the greater convenience and speed of Oyster at stations from West Drayton and Greenford into Paddington.  Zonal fares the equivalent of those on the Tube will apply for journeys from these stations.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said:

“This is excellent news for thousands of First Great Western passengers and takes us a step closer to making Oyster the only ticket you’ll need to travel in London.

“TfL is investing £40m in new Oyster equipment and we will be working with the Train Operating Companies to agree their deals and open up Oyster for all Londoners.

“I have committed to holding a summit meeting with the Train Operating Companies and I can confirm that this will happen before the summer. Completing the roll out of Oyster, improvements to services, station security and passenger safety will all be on the agenda as we work together to improve London’s rail services.”

Well, first of all there’s not been a summit with the TOCs, and it’s definitely not before summer.  In fact it’s September, so how’s the extension of PAYG to the FGW stations going?  Well, I travelled on it from Ealing to Paddington last Saturday and it was fine, but those were two of the three easy stations (those with existing Tube Oyster installations).  One of the ten new stations mentioned in the May press release is Acton Main Line, and the local actonw3.com forum has recently posted an update from the local London Travelwatch representative, Libby Kemp:

Currently there are no dates scheduled as to when the TVMs at Acton will be ‘Oysterised’.
Work is going on to agree Finances for the project as it will also involve changing the Ticket Vending Machines installed at the location from S & B (supplier) to Shere (other supplier).

Sorry not more definitive but will keep you updated.”

This is not what Boris announced at a press call shortly after his election.

Monday 12th May 2008 – 3:33pm
The Mayor of London Boris Johnson today announced a deal between Transport for London (TfL) and First Great Western that will extend Oyster pay as you go to all London stations served by First Great Western from September 2008.

I have now suggested to my colleagues at London TravelWatch that we escalate this matter within FGW.  Will keep you posted of outcome

Thankfully TfL have since written to a forum member to say that the readers will be active from the 21st September.  Good news all round, but another indication that projects like this are not easy to implement.  This is only ten stations, after all – there are another couple of hundred to go, so things have got to crack on a bit even to reach last year’s figure of National Rail stations enabled for PAYG.  So what did happen to that summit?

 
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