Monday, November 10

Rail disruption causes WTM chaos

Bev Fearis reports in the TravelMole that major disruption on the Docklands Light Railway this morning caused chaos for visitors to World Travel Market in London.

On the opening day of the show, hundreds of exhibitors and visitors from around the world experienced the British capital’s transport system at its absolute worst.

DLR staff were unable to explain the reasons for the problems, which saw hundreds of people stranded at Canning Town. A later announcement on the DLR website blamed a faulty train at Royal Albert.

While many were unable to board trains due to severe over crowding, those that braved it had to suffer being crammed in like cattle.

On arrival at Canning Town, they were unable to disembark due to over crowding on the platforms. Doors remained closed until DLR staff had cleared enough space on the platforms to allow passengers to leave the trains.

Eventually a replacement bus service was put into operation, taking visitors slowly through rush hour traffic, and the rain, to Excel.

Many visitors complained that they had been forced to make five or six changes at different stations because of various other problems across the London underground network.

“It doesn’t look good for London,” said one visitor from Cyprus. "It's always bad, but this is the worst I have known it. Next year I will not make any appointments before midday."

Other disgruntled visitors to WTM described the transport chaos as a "farce" and questioned the message it gave to those from overseas about the ability of London to effectively host the 2012 Olympics.