Birmingham New Street Station. Martin John Callanan
9 - 15 June 2005

A live audio transmission of the automated Customer Information System (CIS). Across the 300 km from Birmingham (centre of the rail network, and busiest station), to London (the capital city, and source of most journeys).

The CIS is programmed to translate the actual live running data of trains arriving and departing the station. Comparisons are made against the timetables, the system informs the customers both visually and audibly, to the minute, of delays - with reasons.

Pre-recorded files of numbers, place names, every possible problem that may arise at the station - in three languages - are sequenced and played. Simultaneously different announcements are broadcast to different parts of the station: detailed announcements to the relevant platforms.

A 24/7 live audio transmission of the audio to London was arranged.

The people present in London were able to hear - in real-time - all the possible journeys that could be commenced from Birmingham: a station they could not reach while the information was relevant. The information shifted from useful to ambience. Its presence became excess: sound filling the transience space of a building.

Post privatization of the UK's railway system all the constituent parts are owned, and then operated, by a mass of different companies.

The first artist to work directly with the infrastructure of Network Rail