sir – Quiet carriages on trains, which may be scrapped (report, December 6), were generally enforceable until operating companies changed the signs banning use of electronic devices to signs requesting consideration for other passengers.
The very people who annoy other passengers have little or no concept of what such consideration entails. Colin Laverick
sir – On a service between King’s Cross and York, in a packed quiet coach, a lady of advanced years and slow mobility was helped on by a gentleman. He then alighted; she laboriously unearthed a book from her bag and set about reading it.
Barely 10 minutes into the journey, a woman nearby began a telephone conversation in a rather loud voice. My hackles rose. Then, without flinching or taking her eyes off her book, the older lady said in a loud, sonorous tone: “This is the quiet coach. Please go into the vestibule.”
The woman on the phone failed to hear this request, such was the volume of her own voice, so it was repeated in an even more commanding manner: “We have paid money to be in the quiet coach. Please use the vestibule.”
The phone call was rapidly curtailed and the coach was as quiet as the grave all the way to York. I am still perfecting my vocal technique and summoning up the courage to emulate this solution to the problem. Alexandra Rous
Harrogate, North Yorkshire
sir – Without conductors on trains, quiet zones will be unenforceable. So quiet zones must go before conductors are dispensed with.
However, rowdy yobs are a problem in any carriage. Without conductors, passengers will be left to fend for themselves. This makes the claim that safety will not be compromised on conductorless trains sound a tad silly.
Having once been shoved and verbally abused by a drunken youth, who assumed the suit I was wearing meant I was not only a toff but a Tory, I was grateful for the conductor who intervened. Interestingly, the drunken youth turned out not to have a ticket. Michael Hughes
Wickham Market, Suffolk