Time for a quick update from our chum Dirk in Kent,
"Just a few more days of the summer holidays and then the trains will be back to normal. The first few carriages from the buffers should be studiously avoided for this is where families head, looking ideally for a table, where an early incumbent with any sense will quickly make himself scarce....chivalry has nothing to do with it.
They will need a surface on which to eat their food, a last-gasp treat of Burger King the bribe for foregoing yet another ice-cream earlier in the afternoon. If really lucky this sticky pod will also be close to one of the train loos, for apart from the obvious reasons they can play with the automatic buttons on the doors. It hasn't happened in a while, but until we got the hang of how to lock from inside it used to be common for people on the loo to suffer the indignity for the doors to mysteriously gape open of their own accord.
A particularly restless little tyke couldn't resist the inviting yellow button, pressed it, and was so startled by the ensuing command to "get out" hissed from the wretched woman within that instead of hurriedly closing the door she ran away. It must be said that these loos are generously proportioned to cater for disabled passengers so it's more than just a stretch to reach the 'close/lock' button. Men can at least be facing the far wall, but women have no choice but to hide their faces and pretend it's not happening.
Be warned that in this open-plan situation there's not a lot you can do until you're ready to get up and go, having gone."