If you are planning a train journey later this month do check the departure times, because next weekend is the day all the national rail operators introduce their winter timetables.
Many Ealing travellers will be affected by the change to the Greenford branch trains which depart Paddington at 25 and 55 minutes past the hour. From next weekend departures come forward to 15 and 45 minutes past the hour, with similar changes to journeys in the reverse direction.
The changes are to further help First Great Western's improving punctuality record.
The Greenford Flyer stops at all stations between Paddington and West Ealing and the slightest hitch or delay will usually delay the following train operating a non-stop service. So it makes sense to move the train to a quieter slot in the busy operating pattern. But often a change to benefit the network involves a change that is not so welcome to local, short journey travellers. If you find your regular journey is adversely affected or even more crowded, do tell EPTUG on the message line at 020 8998 0999.
* New fares for Transport for London and national rail companies start - as per tradition - on the first Saturday in January. Most London fares rise by six to 7.5 per cent. One exception is the daily bus pass, which rises to £3.80, a nine per cent rise, though Oyster Card users will pay 50p less. The single Oyster bus fare also rises by more than the norm - 11 per cent, to £1. An All Zones Travelcard will cost £14.80, a £1 rise, though the same pass, excluding peak hour travel, will rise 50p from £7 to £7.50.
* From the same date, however, the Freedom Pass goes to 24-hour validity, including travel on the Tube and the London Overground but not the other rail operators, where it cannot be used before 9.30am, Mondays to Fridays.
Hours of acceptance outside London have not changed. * Tucked away in Alistair Darling's pre-Budget statement was the promise of £300m for the provision of rail carriages (as well as an even larger amount to spend on motorways).
But it did not say whether this money was for additional carriages or simply to bring forward the delivery date of those already announced. However, it is understood part of the £300m is being allocated to First Great Western's Bristol area services and for their inner Thames Valley Services.
First has revealed plans for the refurb, which includes the removal of the First Class cabins and, even more controversially, reducing the number of seats in the standard class coaches.
The plan is to reduce the five seats across a standard carriage to four, two either side of an aisle widened to encourage standing passengers to move into the middle of the coach and not block the door area.
* London Buses seems to be reluctant to tell customers its plans, but it is understood the changes to routes 27 and H91 to better serve Chiswick Park, which were expected to start on November 22, have been put back to January 10. The extension of the E10 to Chiswick Park is not now expected to start until the end of May.
Meanwhile new contracts have been given to the operators of other E routes, but passengers will see little change since mostly the same operators will continue to operate.
* London Buses has remained silent over plans to replace Countdown, a useful service to passengers waiting in the cold at bus stops.
The system has been in decline for many months and London Buses has said no further money will be invested in improving the old technology while investigations into a better system are carried out.
In the meantime bus companies across the UK are enthusiastically installing similar information displays at bus stops and centres, but no news emerges from TfL.
* The railway line that runs from Southall to Brentford once played a vital role in the national network.
Boats brought cargo up the Thames into the docks and from there the railway shipped the freight to all parts of the UK. Passenger trains provided a useful service on the line right up to 1942.
Today the railway, reduced to one track, only carries the occasional train to the aggregates depot close to the M4 and Boston Manor and three or four times a week other trains transport the borough's waste to a landfill site in Buckinghamshire. Next year marks the line's 150th anniversary and the GWR Preservation Group, based in Southall, is keen to mark the event in a big way.
If you know anyone who worked on the line or has any photographs or other mementoes then please tell the group by ringing 020 8754 1529, or by contacting Michael Ryder at the Brentford Musical Museum.
* On a seasonal note, around 600 to 1,000 items per day reach TfL's Lost Property Office at Baker Street.
Yet in spite of efforts that would shame Sherlock Holmes, much remains unclaimed. So this month, with the co-operation of the Salvation Army, unclaimed toys and sports equipment are to be distributed to needy children across the capital.
Happy Christmas to all passengers, and especially the industry's workers, from the volunteers at EPTUG.