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Everything posted by Anru

  1. I haven't travelled by train in the UK for a few years as I have been out of the country. Last week I went to my local station, Basingstoke, and asked for a return ticket to London Road. I can't remember the exact price, but the man at the counter told me it would cost over £30. I was shocked by the price as, when I last took this journey several years ago, I had only paid somewhere in the region of £10-15. My initial assumption was that he was selling me two singles instead of a return, but when I asked this he confirmed that he was selling me a return ticket. I then mentioned that I had been abroad for the last few years and made a comment about how I couldn't believe that the ticket had practically trebled in price during my absence. The man laughed and told me that the prices had gone up several times since then. I bought the ticket and passed through the barrier before going to the platform to wait for my train. While I was waiting at the platform, I was approached by a revenue protection officer who asked to see my ticket. I gave it to him and he asked me where I was going. I told him that I was going to visit a friend in Guildford. He then asked me why I had a ticket for Brighton if I was going to Guildford and showed me the ticket. It turns out that there are two stations named London Road and I had been sold a ticket to the station in Brighton instead. I told him that I had wondered why the ticket was so expensive and that I had mentioned to the man at the ticket office that the price was almost three times what I had paid several years ago. I thanked him for approaching me and told him that I would go back to the ticket office for a refund and the correct ticket. He told me that he would need to keep my ticket as evidence as he would be issuing me with a penalty fare for attempting to travel with an invalid ticket. I explained to him that it seemed to be an honest mistake by the ticket office. I asked him if he could come to the ticket office with me, so that he could speak to the man who sold me the ticket, since he could explain that I had never said 'Brighton' and that he had accidentally sold me the wrong ticket. He refused to do this, then told me that he deals with fare dodgers every day and knows how to spot them. I then pointed out that Brighton was further than Guildford and that I had spent more on the ticket, so I asked how I was supposed to be attempting to dodge a fare by purchasing a more expensive ticket. He told me to save it for court, took my details, issued me with a penalty fare, told me that I would be hearing from them soon and escorted me back to the barriers. I went to the queue at the ticket office hoping to speak to the man who sold me the ticket but, while I was queuing, the revenue protection officer approached me and told me that I had to leave the station. When I asked why, he told me that I was banned from the station and that if I didn't leave he would call the police and report me for trespassing. I left. What happens next?
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