Jump to content

Trainspotting hobby threatened


306 Carlton

Recommended Posts

TRAINSPOTTERS say their hobby is in danger of being wiped out — by anti-terror cops.

Many have been quizzed because they were carrying cameras to snap engines.

Others were stopped because they were scribbling down train numbers.

British Transport Police figures show nearly 160,000 people were quizzed between October 2007 and September 2008 — and more than 62,000 were stopped using counter-terrorism powers.

Ted Vaughan, 65, of the Railway Correspondence and Travel Society, said: “We’ve been driven to the brink. People are obsessed with this belief we are terrorists.

“Some don’t want to go on platforms any more because they are worried about the consequences.”

John Martin, 44, who runs www.railenthusiasts.co.uk, added: “A trainspotter’s rucksack has corned beef sandwiches and custard creams — nothing more sinister.”

Lib Dem transport spokesman Norman Baker, who uncovered the figures, said: “This is an abuse of anti- terrorism powers.”

Police chiefs have issued new guidance to officers.

From here

Link to comment
Share on other sites

But at least in UK they recognize this problem, unlike here in North America where it's simply ignored.

That's because there are likely 2 to 3 times as many railfans in England than there are in all of North America.

I don't think you guys realize just how common a thing it is to be "into" something, be it trains, buses or trucks.

Dan

Link to comment
Share on other sites

And what if you stay off rail property and do it from a public overpass or something? What if trying that approach as opposed to doing the hobby from platforms?

Cops and security will still question you, no matter where you stand and what you do. For example you stand on an public overpass and they'll think your a suicide jumper or something else if you don't have your camera gear on you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

TRAINSPOTTERS say their hobby is in danger of being wiped out — by anti-terror cops.

Many have been quizzed because they were carrying cameras to snap engines.

Others were stopped because they were scribbling down train numbers.

British Transport Police figures show nearly 160,000 people were quizzed between October 2007 and September 2008 — and more than 62,000 were stopped using counter-terrorism powers.

Ted Vaughan, 65, of the Railway Correspondence and Travel Society, said: “We’ve been driven to the brink. People are obsessed with this belief we are terrorists.

“Some don’t want to go on platforms any more because they are worried about the consequences.”

John Martin, 44, who runs www.railenthusiasts.co.uk, added: “A trainspotter’s rucksack has corned beef sandwiches and custard creams — nothing more sinister.”

Lib Dem transport spokesman Norman Baker, who uncovered the figures, said: “This is an abuse of anti- terrorism powers.”

Police chiefs have issued new guidance to officers.

How is this "quizzing" endangering trainspotters' hobbies? As long as no laws are being broken, there's nothing wrong with questioning if it's done respectfully and non-threateningly.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

How is this "quizzing" endangering trainspotters' hobbies? As long as no laws are being broken, there's nothing wrong with questioning if it's done respectfully and non-threateningly.

"Quizzing" can easily turn into harrassment or a search if the cop(s) have nothing better to do.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Looking at going to Europe in a year or so. Has anyone heard of any major problems with railway/ transit photography in Europe, othat than this one? Mainly looking at Germany and Switzerland.

From what I understand, rail-fanning is taken very seriously in mainland Europe. There are many, many railfaning guides that you can buy on Amazon, not to mention all the magazines, and museums, and festivals that celbrate transit systems.

With that in mind, I have yet to hear of any problems in Switzerland, or Germany.

The UK is just as paranoid as the US, when it comes to security. The fact that this is only showing up now, is surprising.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

From what I understand, rail-fanning is taken very seriously in mainland Europe.

That's has been my impression.

Just looking at websites for transit agencies, you can see that they really take pride in their vehicles. Streetcars/ LRV's especially, but trolleybuses as well. It does seem a bit harder to find info a regular buses...

Many of them also have models of their buses avalible, and provide information on their history and other topics like that.

And the amount of preservered equipment is something else too. Mainly streetcars and trolleybuses again, but it seems like it's rare for any system that's been around for at least 30-40 years not to have some historic equipment.

Really want to see the Frankfurt tram museum.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...
That's has been my impression.

Just looking at websites for transit agencies, you can see that they really take pride in their vehicles. Streetcars/ LRV's especially, but trolleybuses as well. It does seem a bit harder to find info a regular buses...

Many of them also have models of their buses avalible, and provide information on their history and other topics like that.

And the amount of preservered equipment is something else too. Mainly streetcars and trolleybuses again, but it seems like it's rare for any system that's been around for at least 30-40 years not to have some historic equipment.

Really want to see the Frankfurt tram museum.

Agreed.

I cannot understand the mentality towards transitfans this side of the pond.

And how no one cares about preseving transportation history is beyond me, especially when you look at how much care and effort is put into such collections in Europe.

We are very behind as a society in North America.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That's has been my impression.

Just looking at websites for transit agencies, you can see that they really take pride in their vehicles. Streetcars/ LRV's especially, but trolleybuses as well. It does seem a bit harder to find info a regular buses...

Many of them also have models of their buses avalible, and provide information on their history and other topics like that.

And the amount of preservered equipment is something else too. Mainly streetcars and trolleybuses again, but it seems like it's rare for any system that's been around for at least 30-40 years not to have some historic equipment.

Really want to see the Frankfurt tram museum.

I subscribe to Tramways and Urban Transit Magazine, and they have a section devoted just to historic models, and festivals. I was born on the wrong continent! I hear Berlin has an excellent museum also.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I subscribe to Tramways and Urban Transit Magazine, and they have a section devoted just to historic models, and festivals. I was born on the wrong continent! I hear Berlin has an excellent museum also.

That can always be corrected, and after reading the high speed rail thread today I am now considering this for the future.

North America is just way to behind and stubborn.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Looking at going to Europe in a year or so. Has anyone heard of any major problems with railway/ transit photography in Europe, othat than this one? Mainly looking at Germany and Switzerland.

I had no hassle in Geneva and Lausanne. In fact, the only question I had was a bystander asking for directions - as if I, the only one without a heavy coat and with a giant DSLR around my neck, wasn't a tourist....

2351000229_eb6914ce06_b.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...