My Recent Writing
I’ve been a cyclist virtually all my life. I started cycling the two miles to school when I was 15, unconcerned even then by the London traffic despite the pleas from my parents. They had given me a Moulton, a precursor of the Brompton with little wheels and Sturmey Archer gears, and though it did not fold up, it was very Swinging London. For a time in my twenties,...
It was exactly the sort of accident that was supposed never to happen. This was a ‘safe’ self-driving car, armed with a battery of sensors and automatic brakes for just such an emergency. The speeding Uber taxi didn’t even brake before mowing down Elaine Herzberg last weekend. If the crash was a catastrophe for the victim and her family, it is disastrous, too, for the billion-dollar proponents of the...
When Peter Hendy, the chairman of Network Rail, produced his review into railway overspending two years ago, he blithely recommended that the company could generate £1.8bn by disposing of non-railway assets. At the time, I wrote that this was a bit of smoke and mirrors since by selling off assets that were earning a rate of return, it would be simply foregoing a future revenue stream in return for...
One of the great mysteries of the current structure of the railways is why does every piece of work, whether undertaken by train operators, Network Rail or the engineering companies cost so much. Network Rail quotes for schemes are sometimes a factor of ten more than might be expected and even the most minor routine job seems to be far higher than comparable work in other industries. Of course,...
This is urgent. Labour must embrace staying in the single market and the customs union or face haemorrhaging members and taking a battering at the polls. That message is coming through both from members and supporters. We are stuck at 40 per cent in the polls because of the failure to take a position on Europe which many of the 48 per cent are willing us to do....
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About Christian Wolmar
Christian Wolmar is an award winning writer and broadcaster specialising in transport and is the author of a series of books on railway history. In the autumn of 2012, he announced he is seeking the Labour candidacy for the 2016 London mayoral election. Read more >>
The automatic announcer on the 18 12 leaving Waterloo for Shepperton just said it was our final destination...who says robots do not have a sense of humour?