C2C's Brio set in the early stages of construction.

After more than 500,000 angry commuters flocked to Social Media in the last 48 hours to complain about the new C2C timetable arrangement, an inside source at the company has confirmed that the new system went through ‘many weeks’ of testing on a Brio set at their headquarters in a secret location. Once bosses were satisfied that there would be no problems in a real-world scenario, the new timetable was given their seal of approval.

The insider, who does not want to be named for fear of revenge attacks and fare increases, confirmed that the timetable testing had taken place on the popular wooden kid-friendly train set. He said, ‘A huge amount of testing was carried out with both normal wooden carriages and locomotives that were painted in C2C colours for a truly accurate representation of real life. Apart from the occasional glitch where two carriage magnets repelled each other and went in opposite directions, this stage of the research and development process went incredibly smoothly, and there was even talk of buying some more of those little turntables and another bridge.’

He added, ‘Unfortunately, we encountered some difficulties when the branch of Early Learning Centre closed down recently on Southend High Street, and the wooden track pieces from Tesco simply didn’t fit onto our train set. At this point, we then decided that we had no alternative but to roll out the new timetable on the line. To be honest, commuters should be venting their anger at whoever owns Early Learning Centre, I don’t know probably Mothercare or someone like that. Passengers need to remember that we have their best interests at heart at all times, and that we have no intention of running a terrible railway – if we wanted to do that we would take over the other line into Southend instead.’

A follow-up email confirmed that this Brio set will no longer be used for timetable research and development – Hornby are said to be interested in constructing a 1:1 scale model of the entire railway for this sort of activity alongside the main C2C route.