In a daily blog for Times Online written during his tour, Lord Adonis described his frustration at being unable to buy a cup of tea at 8pm at Southampton station, which is used by 5.5 million passengers a year.
I take it that the right honourable gent isn't a smoker (he voted for the smoking ban, after all), or else he may have noticed that there are bugger all facilities for having a cigarette anywhere in the entire UK rail network. Not just after 8pm either seeing as it is banned on every platform, despite no study ever even hinting that smoking in the open air can possibly be harmful (mostly because there's no point spending money on studies which have no chance of proving something so laughable).
When smokers have mentioned the inconvenience of this in the past, the reply tends to be a sneering condemnation of their lack of fortitude in abstaining for the duration of their journey, or that they should step outside the station.
Well, Lord Adonis puts the first one to bed with his irritation at not being afforded a cup of tea. He is obviously a weak individual if he can't forgo his cuppa for a little while, n'est-ce pas? Perhaps he should step outside the station and buy his hot drink at another outlet. He might miss his train, but if he wants one that badly ... (as we are are often told).
For example. The journey from Euston to Bolton is nigh on 3 hours with a mere 5 minute change at Stockport. Previously, smokers were able to step off the train and partake in a cigarette before continuing their journey, but since 2007, that isn't possible, so tough titty.
I know it's taboo to even mention such things these days, but perhaps Lord Adonis might like to consider facilities which are denied for a quarter of adult train travellers thanks to an illberal and nonsensical railways bye-law as well, not just options he, personally, may wish to enjoy. To put it in perspective for him, it's like having no chance of a cup of tea either at the station or on the train, at whatever time of day he travels, and on whichever class ticket.
From Lands End to John O'Groats.