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19th July Lockdown Easing - Observations and Compliance

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Freightmaster

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I've given up trying to work out what geographic or demographic factors determine the level of ongoing mask-wearing. Eg. in the last week I've found it to be very low in Liverpool, quite low in Manchester, Wigan and Preston, average in Chester, and extremely high (?!) in Lancaster. If there is some underlying logic to that, I don't see it.
Did you see any green coloured tractors by any chance? ;)

Seriously, Lancaster has a large University and (as far as I can tell from Reddit),
most students tend to be heavily pro-mask.

I live in the area and when I visited the Sainsbury's in Lancaster a couple of weeks ago,
it was like the middle of lockdown with almost everyone wearing masks, but Morrison's
(in Morecambe) was more like 50/50 a few days later...



MARK
 
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Bikeman78

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I was on a Southern 3 car service from Lewes to Southease on the weekend. It was very busy (full and standing) with hikers and families. I was the only one in the carriage without a mask and people where reluctant to sit next to me even voicing their displeasure.
Whereas the crowded 1715 to Southend was about 50/50 and no one seemed to care either way.
 

ChrisC

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Did you see any green coloured tractors by any chance? ;)

Seriously, Lancaster has a large University and (as far as I can tell from Reddit),
most students tend to be heavily pro-mask.

I live in the area and when I visited the Sainsbury's in Lancaster a couple of weeks ago,
it was like the middle of lockdown with almost everyone wearing masks, but Morrison's
(in Morecambe) was more like 50/50 a few days later...



MARK
I travelled around the Peak District last Friday using a Derbyshire Wayfarer ticket. Mask wearing on the busier main bus routes was generally very low but most people were wearing masks on the quieter routes serving more isolated villages. Perhaps this was because they were mainly elderly people.

Chesterfield and Bakewell were very busy and things really did feel like we were back to normal. Tideswell in complete contrast was like the first lockdown last year. There were signs outside shops still saying only one person allowed in at a time. One small greengrocer shop in the main street even had barriers around it with signs telling people not to enter but to be served over the barrier. I went in the church and everywhere was roped off with signs telling you not to touch anything and don’t sit on any seats.

I’m generally not wearing a mask now in shops or on public transport and didn’t on that day. I must admit I felt very uncomfortable on the bus from Bakewell to Chesterfield in the afternoon which was full of secondary school age children returning from school. I did feel quite vulnerable in that crowded situation for well over 30 minutes.
 

35B

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I completely agree. Perhaps someone who works in this sort of job could explain why out of date posters have not been removed?
Because it’s one of a raft of priorities that usually come behind actually operating a service. Most of the British railway network is not that focused on customer experience as a priority, and the boring detail of checking posters and swapping them over is easily pushed down the list by front line staff who don’t see it as a priority.

Its the businesses that are brand focused that will hone in on these details and make sure they’re consistently applied, which is why on the railways there have been comments about LNER keeping robust pro mask messages past the change in law - they’d chosen a message and do have the discipline and staff to be relatively consistent.
 

island

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It was well covered on the national news channels weeks ago that masks are no longer mandatory on the national network in England, so why would you take any notice of out of date posters?
Not everybody watches the news.
 

philosopher

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Did you see any green coloured tractors by any chance? ;)

Seriously, Lancaster has a large University and (as far as I can tell from Reddit),
most students tend to be heavily pro-mask.

I live in the area and when I visited the Sainsbury's in Lancaster a couple of weeks ago,
it was like the middle of lockdown with almost everyone wearing masks, but Morrison's
(in Morecambe) was more like 50/50 a few days later...



MARK
I live near quite a few student hall of residences and have noticed mask wearing among students to be very high, frequently wearing them outside. I am not whether this is due to mask wearing being particularly popular with students or whether it is due to their unis insisting that their students wear masks as much as possible.
 

yorksrob

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Did you see any green coloured tractors by any chance? ;)

Seriously, Lancaster has a large University and (as far as I can tell from Reddit),
most students tend to be heavily pro-mask.

I live in the area and when I visited the Sainsbury's in Lancaster a couple of weeks ago,
it was like the middle of lockdown with almost everyone wearing masks, but Morrison's
(in Morecambe) was more like 50/50 a few days later...



MARK

No one seems to be bothering with masks in the pubs in that City though.
 

MikeWM

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Seriously, Lancaster has a large University and (as far as I can tell from Reddit),
most students tend to be heavily pro-mask.

True, but so does Preston, and there was lots of students in evidence there and *significantly* less masking. (Actually, having just looked it up, UCL in Preston is rather larger than the University of Lancaster, which surprises me a little).

As I say, I'm not sure the differences really makes sense, so perhaps I should stop trying to look for patterns!
 

trebor79

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From my observations, I don't see any great difference in the ages with regard to asking, other than people in their 20's and younger being significantly less likely to be masked. There doesn't seem to be any correlation with age beyond that, from what I have seen. I guess whatever age you are, you either believe masks are important and worth doing, or you don't.
I have noticed that significantly fewer people tend to be masked on trains and stations in the afternoon and evening than in the morning.
 

greyman42

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Because it’s one of a raft of priorities that usually come behind actually operating a service. Most of the British railway network is not that focused on customer experience as a priority, and the boring detail of checking posters and swapping them over is easily pushed down the list by front line staff who don’t see it as a priority.
I would not have thought that it was was the job of front line staff. Who would of put these posters up in the first place?
 

Solent&Wessex

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Anyone who still believes that masks are still mandated on the national network must of been living under a stone for the last two months. Masks are not mandated on the national rail network and the government has made that perfectly clear.
Anyone who takes any notice of social media is a fool.

It is not just social media.

The Railway's own communications are very good at making you think you should be wearing one.

For example the following announcement plays over the public address system, loudly, about every 4 to 5 minutes all day long at Manchester Piccadilly station:

"To keep you safe whilst travelling we are cleaning stations and trains more frequently. You should wear a face covering which covers your mouth and nose, wash your hands frequently, and keep your distance from others. Travel with Confidence".

There is another one, which I can't remember, but plays less frequently, which says "... let's all work together to keep everyone safe."

This along with some TOCS (Northern) reportedly mandating that their staff wear masks at all times inside and out, then the combined effect could well give the impression that you do have to wear a mask.
 

takno

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It is not just social media.

The Railway's own communications are very good at making you think you should be wearing one.

For example the following announcement plays over the public address system, loudly, about every 4 to 5 minutes all day long at Manchester Piccadilly station:

"To keep you safe whilst travelling we are cleaning stations and trains more frequently. You should wear a face covering which covers your mouth and nose, wash your hands frequently, and keep your distance from others. Travel with Confidence".

There is another one, which I can't remember, but plays less frequently, which says "... let's all work together to keep everyone safe."

This along with some TOCS (Northern) reportedly mandating that their staff wear masks at all times inside and out, then the combined effect could well give the impression that you do have to wear a mask.
From all the announcements on LNER and Northern earlier on you would definitely think masks were still mandatory. The fact that only about 10-20% were actually wearing them was a bit of a giveaway though. I guess the crowd on a Friday evening train into Leeds might not be typical though
 

greyman42

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From all the announcements on LNER and Northern earlier on you would definitely think masks were still mandatory. The fact that only about 10-20% were actually wearing them was a bit of a giveaway though. I guess the crowd on a Friday evening train into Leeds might not be typical though
From my experience regarding masks, that is about the same for all LNER journeys.
 

trebor79

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Mask wearing is really starting to drop away now. I was on a full and standing service earlier, and have just seen another full and standing go through Peterborough. Perhaps 50% masked.
Not long now till all but the real hardcore enthusiasts give it up completely. I will be interested to see if things are much different in Nicola's fiefdom later.
 

takno

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Mask wearing is really starting to drop away now. I was on a full and standing service earlier, and have just seen another full and standing go through Peterborough. Perhaps 50% masked.
Not long now till all but the real hardcore enthusiasts give it up completely. I will be interested to see if things are much different in Nicola's fiefdom later.
Very high compliance on Scotland still. I'd say generally 80% on buses round Edinburgh, and also in shops. It does seem increasingly like it's people who don't care wearing masks they happen to be carrying so that staff who don't care won't be forced to make a half-hearted attempt to ask them to wear one.
 

NorthOxonian

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Mask wearing is really starting to drop away now. I was on a full and standing service earlier, and have just seen another full and standing go through Peterborough. Perhaps 50% masked.
Not long now till all but the real hardcore enthusiasts give it up completely. I will be interested to see if things are much different in Nicola's fiefdom later.
My experience is mask wearing is generally a lot higher but there's a lot of variation (with similar patterns to England). Edinburgh is more keen on masks than Dundee, which in turn has more people wearing them than places like Kirkcaldy. In some cases buses in the latter can be majority unmasked (and in the evenings mask wearing drops, just as in England).
 

trebor79

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LNER service I'm on now is full and standing. Less than 5% masked.
I think it's all over now. How much longer can Sturgeon and Drakeford hold out?
 

Merseysider

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My experience is mask wearing is generally a lot higher but there's a lot of variation
Agreed. I found the Primark in Edinburgh to be about 75% masked up (including staff) whereas the H&M a few blocks down was closer to (but not at) 100%, earlier today.

Glasgow, on the other hand, seems to slowly but surely be dropping further, albeit my experience out and about there has been limited to evenings.
 

Butts

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LNER service I'm on now is full and standing. Less than 5% masked.
I think it's all over now. How much longer can Sturgeon and Drakeford hold out?

Probably as long as Airports and Aeroplanes - the war is not over yet o_O

Mind you Sturgeon caved in over pre-departure vaccines so who knows ?

Anyone been on a Ferry / Ship recently - how are the numbers stacking up on the high seas ?
 

trebor79

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The ridiculous faff and basically mandatory masking is exactly the reason I took the train to Glasgow rather than fly.
LNER service was full and standing, just like pre-covid every seat taken and people squished in the vestibules. Much less than 5% masked. Nobody made a fuss.
It's clear the public are moving on from covid, rightly so.
Be interesting to see how long airlines and the devolved governments keep the charade going.
 

Hadders

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I've spent the weekend in Devon. Train from Paddington to Devon on Saturday morning and return Sunday afternoon was very busy, to the point that the catering trolley had to be abandoned on this afternoon's train due to standing passengers and excessive luggage blocking the aisles.

Travelled on a number of local trains to Exeter, Teignmouth, Dawlish Warren, Starcross. All busy, lots of families and students appearing to be on freshers week. Still some stickers on GWR local trains to use window seats only, don't face anyone else and keep windows open.

Almost no-one wearing masks, including on the Underground.

Starcross ferry update - not a single passenger or crewe member wearing a mask on a crossing this afternoon. No announcements about wearing them either although there were signs on the ferry saying 'wear mask'.
 

kingston_toon

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1849 London Bridge to Ashford last night (Saturday) - surprisingly busy and people standing to Sevenoaks. Mask wearing at well under 10%, we and others nearby were having a few beers and there was a group of women in the next carriage sharing Prosecco around using plastic glasses. Everyone was in good spirits and this was probably my most "normal" medium distance train journey since pre-Covid.

2026 Canterbury West to St Pancras this evening - again surprisingly busy and again almost no-one wearing masks.
 

Cowley

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Oh, how the (high and) mighty have fallen!




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It’s all gone out of the window down here until you visit the outlying villages. The larger towns seem like nothing ever happened, yet the posher places are hanging on to masks for dear life!
These small towns residents either don’t leave their particular area or there’s a huge amount of virtue signalling going on, I’m not sure which to be honest. It’s quite interesting to observe though that’s for sure.
 

takno

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The ridiculous faff and basically mandatory masking is exactly the reason I took the train to Glasgow rather than fly.
LNER service was full and standing, just like pre-covid every seat taken and people squished in the vestibules. Much less than 5% masked. Nobody made a fuss.
It's clear the public are moving on from covid, rightly so.
Be interesting to see how long airlines and the devolved governments keep the charade going.
I was intrigued by the number of people getting off the Avanti train in Edinburgh last night who suddenly found a mask from somewhere. I'd say round Leeds and Birmingham the majority of people didn't even seem to have them, and apart from one Edinburgh-based couple nobody in the Avanti carriage wore one on the train, but on arrival at Edinburgh everybody was suddenly masked.

On balance I'd say that Scotgov will probably keep it up until the second somebody demonstrates it's losing them support on their one big issue. As soon as that happens then "the recent drops" will prove that "our sacrifice has been worth it" and "we are able to take further cautious steps to normality". The increasingly angry spokesperson from Grampian NHS who is the only "expert" the BBC can still find to support their corner will huff and puff, but basically the masks will disappear overnight.
 

Bungle73

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LNER pumping out the "Wear a face covering" thing on their social media channels again - and then they probably wonder why people keep coming along demanding to know why they aren't enforcing a non-existent rule, and wanting separate carriages for masked and maskless pax. I can only assume it's some kind of diktat from head office that they keep persisting with this. If only they were as enthusiastic at re-introducing meals.......
 

ChrisC

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It’s all gone out of the window down here until you visit the outlying villages. The larger towns seem like nothing ever happened, yet the posher places are hanging on to masks for dear life!
These small towns residents either don’t leave their particular area or there’s a huge amount of virtue signalling going on, I’m not sure which to be honest. It’s quite interesting to observe though that’s for sure.
I think that is the situation in rural areas throughout the country. The further away these small towns and villages are from large cities the more mask wearing and restrictions on numbers in shops etc seems to be continuing. I think in many cases it is a matter of the people, especially the elderly, haven’t been leaving their area. Many of the elderly people in the village where I live are still not going on the bus into the nearby town as regularly as they did, and are certainly not going into Nottingham. Quite sad, when some of them were so active and they have now really lost confidence to go anywhere outside of the village.

I can understand this. I’m now almost getting back to normal, travelling on public transport without wearing a mask, going into cities and even had a week in London. Yet, for almost a year I didn’t even go into Nottingham only 10 miles away, go into any large shops and certainly didn’t use public transport. Living in a relatively rural area, and not going into busy crowded places for most of last year, it did feel strange the first time I went back into a city. I actually felt quite vulnerable at first, and I’m not normally the type of person who would be like this.
 
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