London Midland

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Complaints handling procedure

We aim to reply to complaints as quickly as possible, and deal with them in accordance to our complaints handling procedure, as detailed below. Download a copy here.

What is a complaint?

Any expression of dissatisfaction by a passenger, or potential passenger, about the service delivery or about company or industry policy.

How can I guarantee a response?

  • if you telephone us, you will get  through to our automated answering service almost immediately. You may then choose from the options on offer, or wait to speak to a member of our Customer Relations team
  • if you tell a member of our staff, they will do all they can to resolve the problem straight away. If this is not possible, they will provide you with details of how to contact Customer Relations. Our Customer Relations team will investigate your complaint and make sure you get the appropriate response
  • as well as training our own staff to receive and pass on complaints, we also brief other staff who work for London Midland under contract, such as cleaners, catering staff and regular suppliers, so that they can direct you to the London Midland Customer Relations team                
  • if you write to us, fax us, or fill in a form on our website, every complaint received by our Customer Relations team (including those made at stations) is logged onto a database and used to improve the service we provide
  • if you require material in alternative accessible formats, or in a language other than English, we will provide it upon request. Where we do not have any knowledge to provide this service, we will employ translators or seek the advice of disability groups

How do I know my complaint will be treated fairly?

We will thoroughly investigate all the complaints we receive. This will make sure that our response is fair.  A full explanation and an apology (where appropriate) will be in our reply.  We will answer every issue raised in a complaint in this way.

If we don't deal with your complaint fairly, you will be dissatisfied and complain again.

How do I make a claim against you?

If you have had an accident, or require compensation for damages, you must write to our Customer Relations team giving as much detail as possible of your claim. If you wish to hand in your letter at a ticket office you can do so, and our staff will forward this on. All claims received by our Customer Relations team are dealt with immediately and an acknowledgement will be sent to you so you know we have received it. If the claim is for an accident, it is forwarded to a separate organisation who act on our behalf and will write directly to you. As with all our other correspondence, we will keep a record of your letter, and the action we have taken with it.

How do you use complaints?

This procedure, and the commitments made in it, are regularly monitored and audited.  We use all the information about complaints to help us make decisions about how we should make changes to our services and improvements to our stations and trains. 

We produce internal reports every four weeks which help inform our Directors and other managers so as to better understand the views of our passengers. Separate reports, containing the same information, are given every four weeks to the Department for Transport, Transport Focus and London TravelWatch. These reports also confirm that we are maintaining the promises made in our Passenger’s Charter.

In addition to reports, a random selection of comments are also audited by senior management every four weeks. All of our auditing and monitoring procedures are regularly reviewed.

This Complaints Handling Procedure will be reviewed at least once a year, or more frequently if changes are needed, and will continue to be discussed with Transport Focus, London TravelWatch and the Department for Transport. Our sources are:

Department for Transport - Guidance on Complaints Handling Procedures (February 2005)
London Midland Passenger's Charter - sections 10 & 11 (November 2007)

How quickly will London Midland reply?

We aim to reply in full within 10 working days.  If we are unable to do this for any reason, we will acknowledge your complaint instead and keep you updated on progress until the case is resolved.

I want to make a complaint, what do I do?

You and your feedback are very important to us. Your feedback will help us to make changes that can develop and grow our business. When you wish to make a complaint, it is very important that you feel you that you can do so safely and be responded to politely, with a promise of action or compensation when this is appropriate. Where we have got it wrong, we will accept responsibility and say we are sorry.

You may make your complaint in different ways.

In person - you can talk to any member of front-line staff.  You can also talk to the local Manager, but you may have to make an appointment to do this as they are in charge of more than one station.

In writing - you may make your complaint in writing in several ways:

  1. You can fill out a 'comments' form, available at every staffed station on request, and either hand it back to a member of staff or on the station, or send it directly to our Customer Relations team
  2. You can write us a letter.
  3. You can complete a feedback form on our website.

By telephone - you can speak to a member of the Customer Relations Team, every day except Christmas Day. Our offices are open between 0700 – 1900 Monday – Friday and 0800 – 1600 on Saturdays, Sundays and the other Bank holidays. We are closed boxing day.

By textphone - you can contact us using a special textphone number during the times shown above.

If I am still not satisfied, what else can I do?

If you are not happy with the way we have answered your complaint, our experience tells us that you will probably complain to us again about the same thing.

We will review your complaint and write to you again. With this letter/email, we will also include details of Transport Focus or London TravelWatch. If you are still unhappy, you can continue to correspond with us, or write to them with details of your complaint and, if appropriate, they will take up your complaint on your behalf.

The addresses of Transport Focus and London TravelWatch are available on request from London Midland Ticket Offices and our Customer Relations team. They are on posters at every station, in our Passenger’s Charter and on our website.

What if my complaint is about someone else?

All train companies follow the same principles when dealing with complaints referring to more than one company. To save you any trouble, we will work together with the other companies to provide you with one response and will tell you who is leading that response.

If the complaint refers in part to another transport provider (for instance a bus or aviation operator), we will explain this in our reply and give you the correct address to complain to.  If you ask us to do so, we will forward your complaint to them directly.

If the complaint refers to another non-transport organisation, we will explain this in our reply and endeavour to provide you with the correct address to complain to.

When do I get compensation?

We know that in many cases when we fail to meet expectations, an apology is often enough.  However, sometimes we will also offer compensation or a goodwill gesture, so that you will feel satisfied and wish to travel again with us.  This is usually given as National Rail Travel Vouchers, or (where appropriate and for amounts over £40) a cheque will be sent.  Compensation is given under arrangements described in the National Rail Conditions of Carriage and the London Midland Passenger’s Charter.

When will you not respond to my complaint?

By telephone - our Customer Relations team are trained to remain polite at all times.  If you use abusive language or tone, they may put the receiver down after telling you that this is what they will do.

In person - if you use abusive language or behaviour to a member of our staff, they may walk away, or seek assistance from another member of staff.  In extreme circumstances the Police may be called.  In these circumstances, it is unlikely that your complaint will be taken seriously.

By letter, fax or our website - if a complaint contains abusive language or is aggressive in tone, we will reply, but will advise you in our response that this is unacceptable. We will also terminate correspondence if it is ‘frivolous’ or ‘vexatious’ as defined below.
Frivolous – paltry, trifling; lacking seriousness, silly, not serious or sensible in content.
Vexatious – annoying. Not having sufficient grounds for action and seeking only to annoy.

Under these circumstances, we will only terminate correspondence about a specific complaint where it is clear that, despite our best efforts, we are unlikely to satisfy you.  The decision to terminate correspondence will only be made by a senior manager after ensuring the involvement of Transport Focus or London TravelWatch. 

We will always tell you when we are about to terminate a complaint, and the reason why we are taking this action.

Where can I find London Midland's address and telephone number?

In all our major publications, such as our pocket timetables and our Passenger's Charter

  • on our website in the contact us section
  • on posters displayed at every London Midland station
  • on posters displayed in every carriage of our trains
  • on request from any member of staff

If we share a station or a train with another train company we will: 

  • display the other Train Company’s details on the shared train, if they ask us to do so
  • give information verbally about how to contact other Train Companies
  • display on our station informatoin posters details of how to contact other train companies

 

We will also make sure our on train staff carry information cards with our contact details on with them at all times.

Our contact details are:
London Midland Customer Relations, PO box 4323, B2 4JB
telephone: 0121 634 2040
fax: 0121 654 1234
textphone: 0845 707 8051
website: www.londonmidland.com
email: comments@londonmidland.com

 

 

Will you give my details to other people?

Your personal information will not be given to any other organisation, with the exception of the parties listed below and only if appropriate to do so:

  • The Department for Transport
  • Other train operating companies
  • Other transport providers when you ask us to
  • Passenger representative groups such as Transport Focus and/or London TravelWatch if involved in a case
  • Any other such body carrying out their statutory functions