Commuting delays ruin family's life

AN investment banker from Ipswich today said he was planning to move back to London, claiming the strain of commuting by rail to London is ruining his family's life.

AN investment banker from Ipswich today said he was planning to move back to London, claiming the strain of commuting by rail to London is ruining his family's life.

Ben Hollis, 33, moved to Vermont Road from Putney with his wife Trina two years ago so their young children would not have to grow up in the capital - Mia is two and Oscar is six-months-old.

However the strain of his daily trips have taken their toll on the family, and now they are planning to return to west London.

He said: “The last few days have been the final straw, but things have been bad for some time. It is the regular delays to services that get you down.

“I'm going to keep a daily log of services to just how bad it is - there are regular 20 or 30 minute delays on the journeys home. That isn't too bad if you are make the trip occasionally or once a week, but if you are commuting every day it's a big chunk out of your life.”

His morning trips to London were usually problem-free - it was the journeys home that were the problem.

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“I catch the first train of the day down to London, and unless there has been some over-running engineering work from the previous night, things are usually ok and we arrive on time.

“But coming back I catch the 6.20pm and by then things have always slipped. If it doesn't leave bang on time it gets pushed behind slower trains and that delays it further. July was a really bad month.

“I don't see my children from one weekend to the next - sometimes I am home to read Mia a story, but it's not good enough. The commuting is just impossible.

“We're thinking of moving back to Putney and renting somewhere there - we've been there on scouting missions over the last few weeks.”

Mrs Hollis hopes to return to work two days a week, but the cost of childcare in London may make that impossible - if the couple stay in Ipswich they have family members who can help out with looking after the youngsters.

“If the trains work well and you can rely on them we would be fine - June was a very good month, but May and July were dreadful and the last week has been horrendous,” he said.

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