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Praise for train and bus staff

PUBLISHED: 03:00 31 October 2001 | UPDATED: 10:46 03 March 2010

PUBLIC transport staff have been praised in the latest survey carried out by members of the East Suffolk Travellers' Association.

Members were asked to complete a questionnaire about a local train or bus journey made during August so that the association could build up a snapshot of the state of local services.

PUBLIC transport staff have been praised in the latest survey carried out by members of the East Suffolk Travellers' Association.

Members were asked to complete a questionnaire about a local train or bus journey made during August so that the association could build up a snapshot of the state of local services.

The survey revealed that 88% of those responding found train staff "helpful and courteous" while the figure for bus drivers was even higher at 95%.

In a small number of cases, however, not all tickets were inspected or fares collected because the trains were so full.

There was also a high level of satisfaction with the information provided at railway stations (86%) but there was criticism of bus stops where 48% complained of lack of timetables or out-of-date information.

While both trains and buses scored well on comfort and cleanliness there is still a significant problem with litter at rail and bus stations.

The survey also revealed considerable criticism about timekeeping on buses and trains with around half of all journeys either starting late or arriving late at their destination.

Trevor Garrod, chairman of the ESTA, said: "Complaints about dirty trains are fewer than when we did a similar survey in 1999 but litter on trains and stations remains a problem.

"It is a problem that can be tackled relatively cheaply however."

Mr Garrod said the main complaints from bus passengers were the lack of facilities at bus stops as many did not have adequate seats or shelter.

"Some modest expenditure at least at the busier locations would be welcome here," he said.

A copy of the ESTA survey has been sent to Anglia Railways, First Eastern Counties and Suffolk County Council.

ESTA is a voluntary body for train and bus passengers in the area from Ipswich to Lowestoft.

It has more than 450 members and is holding a public meeting at the United Reformed Church, Quay Street, Halesworth, on Saturday, November 17, starting at 2.15pm.

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