I remember Virgin Trains' 9-car Pendolino sets having 4 coaches of First Class and 5 of Standard, except the shop took up half a Standard coach - a bloody ridiculous ratio. It did mean that First was lovely and quiet, but also that Standard could be a zoo. I always, always took the Weekend First upgrade, £15 to get out of that madness was a bargain.
Virgin Trains have long since been consigned to history, and the replacement outfit Avanti seem to be making a right pig's ear of it. As I understand it, they're struggling to run even a quarter of the trains they're supposed to be, and can't even tell you on the day which trains those will be. I wouldn't be at all surprised if this franchise gets re-nationalised soon.
I hate these new Class 800s with a passion. Then again, I haven't tried First Class with any operator yet. But Standard is misery. And on GWR at least, the corner "seats" have a corner sticking out of the wall that seems designed specifically to smash your elbow.
For me, flying London-Edinburgh is pretty much a no-brainer due to the fact that I'm probably starting at Heathrow anyway - the airport-city transfer time counts against the train, rather than for it. BA flights count towards my Finnair status, trains don't. And in these crazy times where neither the airlines nor the railways seem capable of running what they've sold, EU261 compensation would definitely swing the argument in the plane's favour, although the UK, being the UK, seems to be scrapping that. (BA bosses went to the same private schools as the Cabinet? Surely not...)
My friend and I applied for airline jobs in Australia, but they didn't Qantas.