Great Western Coffee Shop

Journey by Journey => To Oxford, Didcot and Reading from West => Topic started by: grahame on November 03, 2018, 10:42:57 am



Title: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: grahame on November 03, 2018, 10:42:57 am
While Filton Bank is closed ... we have (weekdays, including peak times) Cross Country Voyagers running up / none stop through Chippenham.

Noting / watching activity over the last couple of days - I note virtually zero interference between these extra trains, London expresses, Bristol to Portsmouth regional expresses and local trains to and via Westbury.  Just saying that old capacity excuses about being unable to run Bristol - Oxford because of Bristol  - Bath capacity seem to be being proven to be somewhat porkies!


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: SandTEngineer on November 03, 2018, 11:04:12 am
Lets see what capacity there is when Bristol Temple Meads(excl) to Thingley Junction is resignalled in April 2019.

Did I note that a few diverted XC services are stopping at Bath during the evening?


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: Lee on November 03, 2018, 11:19:22 am
No need to worry about that - I remember when I read the Network Rail memo that said under no circumstances was the capacity available for the Romsey/Salisbury Six service proposal. Cue a couple of JFDI emails from DfT, and before you knew it, "further pathing investigations" were taking place et voila!


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: martyjon on November 03, 2018, 11:21:38 am
While Filton Bank is closed ... we have (weekdays, including peak times) Cross Country Voyagers running up / none stop through Chippenham.
Noting / watching activity over the last couple of days - I note virtually zero interference between these extra trains, London expresses, Bristol to Portsmouth regional expresses and local trains to and via Westbury.  Just saying that old capacity excuses about being unable to run Bristol - Oxford because of Bristol  - Bath capacity seem to be being proven to be somewhat porkies!


And since the coal trains from Avonmouth To Didcot ceased running, those paths between Wotton Bassett and Didcot are now ancient history so capacity between these latter two locations should be no problem, The DfT, NR and GWR must think all of us customers (passengers) are the typical village idiot but we ain't.


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: grahame on November 03, 2018, 11:27:34 am
Lets see what capacity there is when Bristol Temple Meads(excl) to Thingley Junction is resignalled in April 2019.

Did I note that a few diverted XC services are stopping at Bath during the evening?

Bath is a major tourist city,  with (I think) one of the highest incomes of any station if measured in proportion to the number of platforms in use.   There is real scope for longer distance services from there in the future ... at present under a non-engineering timetable, there is a single daily departure via Birmingham and not a single through service coming back - and even that single departure is under threat.



Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: Timmer on November 03, 2018, 12:29:57 pm
Did I note that a few diverted XC services are stopping at Bath during the evening?
Pretty much all diverted XC services are stopping at Bath which makes sense as there would be a fair few XC related journies that start/end there. Pick up only northbound. Set down only southbound.


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: XPT on November 17, 2018, 07:27:41 pm
Did I note that a few diverted XC services are stopping at Bath during the evening?
Pretty much all diverted XC services are stopping at Bath which makes sense as there would be a fair few XC related journies that start/end there. Pick up only northbound. Set down only southbound.

The pick up only northbound and set down only southbound appears to be not strictly adhered to though.  I was on the XC service this evening that was scheduled to set down at Bath Spa at 1718.  I thought as it was approaching Bath Spa, even though this service is scheduled as set down only there, I bet a number of people will still get on.  And I noticed they did!  Even though the departure screens specific to that platform had SET DOWN ONLY displayed, and there was a platform staff member there.   I suppose there's not much that can be done about that really, as some people will still know that that service will be stopping at Bristol Temple Meads so will board it!  And/or maybe that platform staff member mentioned to people they could get that service to Bristol. Not really a complaint, but just an observation. 


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: SandTEngineer on November 17, 2018, 08:50:54 pm
I was on the 1225 Plymouth to Birmingham NS yesterday and the guard/conductor announced Bath Spa as a stop Eastbound.


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: XPT on November 17, 2018, 09:04:09 pm
I was on the 1225 Plymouth to Birmingham NS yesterday and the guard/conductor announced Bath Spa as a stop Eastbound.

Hmm... maybe the conductor got things mixed up with the scheduled stop at Bath Spa, but that it is not a set down stop for northbound services.


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: JontyMort on November 17, 2018, 11:16:15 pm
I was on the 1225 Plymouth to Birmingham NS yesterday and the guard/conductor announced Bath Spa as a stop Eastbound.

Hmm... maybe the conductor got things mixed up with the scheduled stop at Bath Spa, but that it is not a set down stop for northbound services.

I was on the 0642 from New Street on Wednesday, and as we approached Bath it was ding dong... silence... (we still seem to be going quite fast)... ding dong... "well, as you can see ladies and gentlemen, the next station stop will actually be Bristol Temple Meads". Apparently that first train is the only one that didn't stop.

In the return direction the Bath stop was not on the board or announced at Bristol, but the guard announced it and the display on the carriage end said Bath (mind you, the next coach said Totnes).


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: Charlie (in Gloucester) on November 18, 2018, 01:15:58 am
They tend to announce Bath to avoid confusion, some could think its Temple Meads/ Swindon.


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: froome on November 19, 2018, 09:15:50 pm
Did I note that a few diverted XC services are stopping at Bath during the evening?
Pretty much all diverted XC services are stopping at Bath which makes sense as there would be a fair few XC related journies that start/end there. Pick up only northbound. Set down only southbound.

The pick up only northbound and set down only southbound appears to be not strictly adhered to though.  I was on the XC service this evening that was scheduled to set down at Bath Spa at 1718.  I thought as it was approaching Bath Spa, even though this service is scheduled as set down only there, I bet a number of people will still get on.  And I noticed they did!  Even though the departure screens specific to that platform had SET DOWN ONLY displayed, and there was a platform staff member there.   I suppose there's not much that can be done about that really, as some people will still know that that service will be stopping at Bristol Temple Meads so will board it!  And/or maybe that platform staff member mentioned to people they could get that service to Bristol. Not really a complaint, but just an observation. 

I don't understand why they made these services pick up or set down only. It must have been obvious they couldn't stop people getting on or off. And I don't understand why Chippenham wasn't included as a stop. As has been said earlier, there is capacity for this to happen, and on the one service I used during this time, it just missed a connection at Swindon for a service to Chippenham, meaning an unnecessarily long wait for anyone wanting to go there.


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: grahame on November 19, 2018, 09:33:36 pm
And I don't understand why Chippenham wasn't included as a stop.

They don't stop at Bridgwater ... they hardly stop at Weston-super-mare ... only the odd one stops at Gloucester ... and none call at Worcestershire Parkway.  They seem to have visions of grandeur above their station so why on earth would they call at Chippenham?

Yes, it is blooming irritating to want to go to Scotland and see the darned thing whistle through.


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: Charlie (in Gloucester) on November 19, 2018, 09:54:20 pm
Maybe XC should run some “odd one out” stopping services. Cardiff and Newport have no significant long distance services so why not a Cardiff - Edingburgh etc and beyond providing calls at Gloucester as well? Just a thought.


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: Dispatch Box on November 20, 2018, 07:52:02 pm
Maybe XC should run some “odd one out” stopping services. Cardiff and Newport have no significant long distance services so why not a Cardiff - Edingburgh etc and beyond providing calls at Gloucester as well? Just a thought.


Would make a change instead of all going to Nottingham or Birmingham


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: ChrisB on March 06, 2019, 02:26:59 pm
If XC acted as an all stations (and yes, others will want their 'passing through' services to stop too) the service would take so long as to be worthless.

It's an *interCity* service.....


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: Timmer on March 06, 2019, 06:25:20 pm
While Filton Bank is closed ... we have (weekdays, including peak times) Cross Country Voyagers running up / none stop through Chippenham.

Noting / watching activity over the last couple of days - I note virtually zero interference between these extra trains, London expresses, Bristol to Portsmouth regional expresses and local trains to and via Westbury.  Just saying that old capacity excuses about being unable to run Bristol - Oxford because of Bristol  - Bath capacity seem to be being proven to be somewhat porkies!
Hmmm glad ChrisB’s post has resurrected this thread as your above comment Graham makes me wonder why one of the two limited stop Bristol-London can’t go via Bath rather than both going via Parkway when the hourly XC service went this way and stopping at Bath.


Title: Re: A welcome to XC from Bristol to Swindon. Delighted to have you; we have space
Post by: grahame on March 06, 2019, 07:18:47 pm
Hmmm glad ChrisB’s post has resurrected this thread as your above comment Graham makes me wonder why one of the two limited stop Bristol-London can’t go via Bath rather than both going via Parkway when the hourly XC service went this way and stopping at Bath.

Could it be that the new timetable includes a path or allowance from Bristol to Bath Spa for an additional (Metro West) stopper?



Express leaves Temple Meads at :00
Stopper leaves at :03.5, Stopper reaches Bath Spa :20.5 (17 minutes), Stopper leaves Bath Spa :22.5
Express leaves Temple Meads at :15, Arrives Bath Spa :26

As planned, you have 3 expresses most hours (2 x PAD, 1 x PMH); stepping them up to 4 consistently and evenly (3 to London) would leave no slack / recovery - above shows how a local between two departure from Temple Meads with a 3.5 minute headway is at the very limit.    All it needs is a platform delay ...

Stoppers go up to 2 an hour "Metro West" and you can see the problem of putting in a Saltford stop. You can also see the lack of time to reverse at Bath Spa, and note that doing so would reflect would reflect delays in one direction into the paths in the other. And there's the SWR trains to add in there too.

It is of course much more complex that this - with only 2 of the four 'intermediate' paths at :04 :19 :34 and :49 actually being tight stoppers (that helps) and flat junctions at Bristol East and Bathampton to path (that hinders).




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