Chairman Pip's Railway Thoughts

Dinnae mess wi’ The Big Man

Posted in Customer service, Great Britain, Media, Other general stuff about railways by Chairman Pip on 14 December 2011

I read a story in today’s paper about a video posted on Youtube that was taken a few days ago on a ScotRail train running from Edinburgh Waverley to Perth. The train in question was at Linlithgow when the conductor got into a verbal altercation with a passenger over apparently not having a valid ticket – according to the footage taken by another passenger, the conductor was stating that the ticket shown was a single from Polmont to Edinburgh Park, which is the opposite direction to the one the train was travelling. Our passenger maintained he’d already shown a valid ticket. He then proceeded to get belligerent and refused to either:

  • Pay for a new fare
  • Look for his supposedly valid ticket
  • Leave the train

What was developing into a standoff, with passenger chappie not budging, and the conductor pointing out that everyone else on the train would start complaining, not to the conductor but to the passenger, when all of a sudden, striding like a Scottish Colossus, comes the big man. “Do you need some help?” he asks, before manhandling passenger chappie off the train, and then blocking the door to prevent him boarding again. Cue rounds of applause and salutations of “Cheers Big Man” from everyone.

Now, I have no wish to go all Daily Mail on you all, but well done to “The Big Man”, a chap by the name of Alan Pollock (“believed” to be a firefighter). I don’t like the idea of people being manhandled off trains, but when you’re a mouthy student, as Sam Main (the passenger) appears to be, causing delays to everyone for the simple reason of being a selfish twat, then I see justification. Young Master Main has said in the press that he “had the right ticket” and “must have given the wrong one to the conductor”. In that instance you say “oops, sorry, I’ll show you the right one” and not “I’ve fucking paid” and “I’ll just sit here”. Because last I checked, the conductor stamps your ticket, he or she doesn’t keep it. Ergo, either Master Main had his valid ticket with him (and could have shown it) or he didn’t. In which case, he was a fare evader and rightly ejected from the train. We also now have pictures of Master Main with facial injuries, and the poor diddums Daddy saying that Mr Pollock should be up for assault. I say to Mr Main, if your little boy hadn’t chosen to struggle, and avoid paying the right fare (which, based on my reading of the incident, seems to be the case), then he wouldn’t have received any injuries. Mr Pollock deserves applause, not arrest.

“‘Big Man’ who tackled fare dodging teenager on train is named”
“Train vigilante ‘should face assault charge’”


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