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Time to close down one clock and start a new one ticking. It's called black humour
Once this column's ‘days to PUG1' was adopted by the West Coast Route Modernisation (WCRM) team and appeared in the foyer on every floor of all their offices and outstations it had clearly achieved its purpose of focusing attention on, as the dying Cecil Rhodes put it ‘so much to do, so little time'. It was fun to keep it running, but now that the WCRM has run out of money and time and the will to live, PUG1 has slipped back a year, and the service can't be timetabled anyway, we stop the clock with 190 days plus at least a year, to go.
And it its place we have a new counter. On October 5, infuriated by the demands of Railtrack for unlimited amounts of money, Tony Blair told Transport Secretary Stephen Byers to get tough on profits and tough on the causes of profits.
Unfortunately the rest of the industry is suffering collateral damage from the surgical strike on Railtrack, as uncertainty paralyses decisions. Byers has said that NuTrak, cleansed of profiteers, will be a respected member of the Railway community within six months.
No one else thinks this is possible, so this month Informed Sources launches ‘Operation Enduring Hiatus'. As a service to readers we will be noting the number of days Railtrack has been in administration.
Operation Enduring Hiatus
46 days in Administration