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Journey by Journey => London to South Wales => Topic started by: GWR 158 on February 15, 2021, 06:41:45 pm



Title: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: GWR 158 on February 15, 2021, 06:41:45 pm
The purpose of this poll is to gather opinions if the line from Cardiff to Swansea should be electrified.


Title: Re: Cardiff to Swansea electrified
Post by: grahame on February 15, 2021, 07:20:30 pm
The purpose of this poll is to gather opinions if the line from Cardiff to Swansea should be electrified.

Indeed.   What (if any) are your wider objectives - how do you plan to make use of the results of the various polls?


Title: Re: Cardiff to Swansea electrified
Post by: GWR 158 on February 15, 2021, 07:29:57 pm
I don't plan to do anything with the info from voting I just want to gather people's views on the topic


Title: Re: Cardiff to Swansea electrified
Post by: eightf48544 on February 16, 2021, 11:19:06 am
Not just for IETs TfW would also run the lcoal stoppers with EMUs especcialy if any of the new stations are built and the Valley lines electrified. It could be a Westward extension of the Cardiff Bristol Metro.


Title: Re: Cardiff to Swansea electrified
Post by: paul7575 on February 16, 2021, 06:58:50 pm
The thread title is making a statement that “Cardiff to Swansea [is ]electrified” though?
Should it not be expressed as a question?

Paul


Title: Re: Cardiff to Swansea electrified
Post by: GWR 158 on February 16, 2021, 07:28:49 pm
Paul, I understand how you may have misunderstood but I meant the heading as a topic not a statement
Tom


Title: Re: Cardiff to Swansea electrified
Post by: paul7575 on February 16, 2021, 07:42:23 pm
You should have simply titled it “Cardiff to Swansea electrification”.  It’s about the past tense “electrified” being wrong.


Title: Re: Cardiff to Swansea electrified
Post by: GWR 158 on February 16, 2021, 07:44:45 pm
Fair enough, thank you for bringing it to my attention.


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: Red Squirrel on February 16, 2021, 10:35:08 pm
I've changed the subject of the OP to make it clearer what this is about.


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: grahame on February 17, 2021, 08:32:24 am
I've changed the subject of the OP to make it clearer what this is about.

Thanks, Red Squirrel. It can be a challenge to differentiate between the text to use for the title and the question in a poll - something I've got very used to doing over the years, but it's all too easy to make an unclear mixture.

On topic now ...

Electrification onwards from Cardiff to Swansea is very much a part of Network Rail's long term, green / carbon zero agenda, and I would be very surprised to find a vote of members here to come up with a "don't do it" outcome.  But then the (real) purpose of a survey/poll/consultation is to find out - either to check what you think you know or to inform or even to surprise.

Carrying on from Cardiff - at least - to Swansea makes sense. Not only for the London expresses, but also for the Swan Line local trains which have been very much in the diesel doldrums.  Passenger numbers at Llanshamlet, Skewen, Briton Ferry and Baglan look somewhat low to me; personal experience of using Llanshamlet suggests there might be potential for green growth there with a good local service.

Perhaps there is logic in including overheads up to Maesteg too?  Or running that service with 769s, electric as far as Bridgend?

In writing the above, I am not answering "should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified next?" - I look at Chippenham to Bristol Temple Meads, and Didcot to Oxford as top candiates, with Bristol Temple Meads to Bromsgrove and Basingstoke to Reading as also in my thoughts for the most immediate/first candidates in a rolling program.  I am not addressing the question "should we upgrade the line while we are at it?" either.


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: ellendune on February 17, 2021, 10:45:36 am
In writing the above, I am not answering "should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified next?" - I look at Chippenham to Bristol Temple Meads, and Didcot to Oxford as top candidates, with Bristol Temple Meads to Bromsgrove and Basingstoke to Reading as also in my thoughts for the most immediate/first candidates in a rolling program.  I am not addressing the question "should we upgrade the line while we are at it?" either.

I think that really has to be the point.

A rush to electrify without doing upgrades first adds significantly to the cost of those upgrades.  Someone once told me how much more Temple Meads Roof would if it was electrified first.  I can't remember the amount but it was very large!  I expect we could say the same about Bristol East Junction.  If improvements need doing to raise line speeds between Cardiff and Swansea then they must be done before electrification. 


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: grahame on March 02, 2021, 09:23:38 pm
Well ... I'm not surprised at the outcome of the poll ... any thoughts / comments from the original poster  ;)  - is the outcome along the lines you would have thought??


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: onthecushions on March 04, 2021, 06:12:37 pm

May I pose a related question, would it be acceptable to break existing services so that only or predominantly, electric traction was used on this route?

Would changing trains at the limits of the wires be acceptable?

OTC


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: grahame on March 04, 2021, 07:30:29 pm

May I pose a related question, would it be acceptable to break existing services so that only or predominantly, electric traction was used on this route?

Would changing trains at the limits of the wires be acceptable?

OTC

Historical analysis suggests you loose between 42% and 46% of through journeys when you replace it with separate services with a change / connection.   Now - my recollection of Cardiff is that a lot of awful people get off and an awful lot get on when a through train between Swansea and London calls there - so perhaps you're looking at 45% of 45% - so perhaps your loss is only around a quarter - 25%.

But - hang - on - where the speed / capacity / calling metric is similar for both electric and non-electric legs, don't  we have bi-modes?  Classes 755, 769, 800, 802, 805, 810, Class 73 and 88 loco hauled.   Much of that already and it could be moved to new changeover points rather than having people change on the way.  Not universal, of course - I'm not going to suggest London to Gunnislake, Looe or Exmouth through bi-modes.


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: bobm on March 04, 2021, 08:05:41 pm
Now - my recollection of Cardiff is that a lot of awful people get off and an awful lot get on when a through train between Swansea and London calls there


You didn’t really mean that did you?   ;D


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: onthecushions on March 06, 2021, 11:22:26 pm

Historical analysis suggests you loose between 42% and 46% of through journeys when you replace it with separate services with a change / connection. 


Are there a lot of through journeys between Manchester and Milford Haven (or even most points in between on the route taken)?

Can a case be made for 50 odd miles of electrification for one partly loaded train per hour?

Just a question, not an opinion.

OTC


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: grahame on March 08, 2021, 08:46:24 am

Historical analysis suggests you loose between 42% and 46% of through journeys when you replace it with separate services with a change / connection. 


Are there a lot of through journeys between Manchester and Milford Haven (or even most points in between on the route taken)?

Can a case be made for 50 odd miles of electrification for one partly loaded train per hour?

Just a question, not an opinion.

OTC

I suspect there are many more sparse branches in countries like Switzerland that are elecrified for one, rather shorter that an IET, train each hour each day.   I don't think that length of line is relevant as electrification costs and gains are both broadly proportional to the length.

Once Cardiff to Swansea is electrified, I would expect it to be more trains though - with Swanline locals running electric too.

But do remember Grayling's theorem that money can be saved by using bi-mode trains and cutting off electrification and the boundary, and Grayling's corollary that once the bi-modes have been bought, the case for electrification beyond is reduced because you are (by that time) running a part-electric route and have taken the gains from the electrified part that would be available to you if you only had single mode trains.

I doubt there are (m)any through journeys Manchester to Milford Haven - however - there are probably a substantial number of journeys across potential service break points (such as Crewe, Shrewsbury, Cardiff and Swansea)

Meanwhile ... from The Construction Index (https://www.theconstructionindex.co.uk/news/view/alun-grifiths-extends-swansea-station-platform)

Quote
Contractor Alun Griffiths has begun construction of a new, longer platform 4 at Swansea station is underway, following a month of demolition work to remove the old one.

The new platform will be 260 metres long, 13 metres longer than before, to allow GWR’s new Intercity express trains to stop there.

So that allows a 10 car IET - 26 metres x 10 - right?

Also covered in Ground Engineering Plus. (https://www.geplus.co.uk/news/piling-completed-for-swansea-longer-train-platform-08-03-2021/)


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: Bmblbzzz on March 08, 2021, 09:40:39 am
There might be through journeys from Manchester to Pembroke, both for the ferry and for beachy holidays.


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: stuving on March 08, 2021, 12:23:15 pm
Meanwhile ... from The Construction Index (https://www.theconstructionindex.co.uk/news/view/alun-grifiths-extends-swansea-station-platform)

Quote
Contractor Alun Griffiths has begun construction of a new, longer platform 4 at Swansea station is underway, following a month of demolition work to remove the old one.

The new platform will be 260 metres long, 13 metres longer than before, to allow GWR’s new Intercity express trains to stop there.

So that allows a 10 car IET - 26 metres x 10 - right?

Also covered in Ground Engineering Plus. (https://www.geplus.co.uk/news/piling-completed-for-swansea-longer-train-platform-08-03-2021/)

You might think that's an awful lot of civil engineering effort just to add 13 m to the end of a perfectly usable platform. You might think it's an even more awful lot of effort when you find out that P4 was already long enough for 263 m long trains as far as Network Rail was concerned (and the other three platforms are longer). However ...

The lengths in the Operational Rules are defined as
Quote
The table below shows the maximum length of train that may use each of the platforms at the following passenger stations. All lengths are in metres. The quoted lengths are the usable lengths from ramp to ramp unless specified.
The measurements take no account of the need for signal sighting. Trains longer than the quoted lengths will only be accepted subject to the authority of the Route Director.

And for terminating platforms as at Swansea, the length is specified as being "top of ramp to buffer stops". Which looks a bit contradictory, doesn't it?


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: onthecushions on March 10, 2021, 11:56:54 am
"Investigation of the use of oil-electric sets on trains discloses, however, that for a line with a frequent service, it would appear more economical to take the oil engines off the trains and put them in fixed generating stations supplying electric current to the moving train. This would result in a smaller number of oil engines being required on account of the improved load factor, so that the first cost would be reduced, the efficiency increased, and the weight of the moving train reduced. Conversely, it is evident that where the traffic is light it would pay better to put the oil engine and electric generator on the moving train."

Diagram 1, Appendix 1, p57 shows the running and total cost comparison wrt ton miles per mile per annum.

Weir Report 1931, p11

OTC


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: grahame on March 10, 2021, 12:32:53 pm
Diagram 1, Appendix 1, p57 shows the running and total cost comparison wrt ton miles per mile per annum.

Weir Report 1931, p11

OTC

Some good lessons and thoughts, but we should bear in mind that technology has moved on in 90 years and the outcomes may have changed.   Actually I suspect the same conclusions with different data, complicated by the fact that you now have both on one train.

On our member's mirror at http://www.passenger.chat/mirror/MoT_Elec001.pdf .  Original From https://www.railwaysarchive.co.uk/documents/MoT_Elec001.pdf at https://www.railwaysarchive.co.uk/documents/MoT_Elec001.pdf


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: Rhydgaled on April 09, 2021, 11:10:56 pm
Electrification onwards from Cardiff to Swansea is very much a part of Network Rail's long term, green / carbon zero agenda, and I would be very surprised to find a vote of members here to come up with a "don't do it" outcome. 

[SNIP]

In writing the above, I am not answering "should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified next?" - I look at Chippenham to Bristol Temple Meads, and Didcot to Oxford as top candiates, with Bristol Temple Meads to Bromsgrove and Basingstoke to Reading as also in my thoughts for the most immediate/first candidates in a rolling program.  I am not addressing the question "should we upgrade the line while we are at it?" either.
I will answer "should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified next?"; not in my opinion. Even looking just at the GWML, Didcot-Oxford and the routes into Bristol Temple Meads (both via Bath and via Bristol Parkway, assuming the PAD-BRI via Bristol Parkway services haven't become a casualty of COVID) should come first. A key reason for that is that:
A rush to electrify without doing upgrades first adds significantly to the cost of those upgrades.  Someone once told me how much more Temple Meads Roof would if it was electrified first.  I can't remember the amount but it was very large!  I expect we could say the same about Bristol East Junction.  If improvements need doing to raise line speeds between Cardiff and Swansea then they must be done before electrification.
Between Cardiff and Swansea (and, in particular, between Cardiff and Bridgend) there are capacity limitations with a mix of slow (Maesteg and Swanline) services, freight and fast passenger services sharing just two tracks (with a few freight loops). That needs to be addressed before electrification.

May I pose a related question, would it be acceptable to break existing services so that only or predominantly, electric traction was used on this route?

Would changing trains at the limits of the wires be acceptable?
At Cardiff? I doubt it. It would however, I feel, make sense to terminate more services at Swansea. Manchester to Milford Haven is so hopelessly indirect that most who would be put off by needing to change would have been put off by the journey time anyway. Even Cardiff to Carmarthen is absolutely thrashed by the M4.

There might be through journeys from Manchester to Pembroke, both for the ferry and for beachy holidays.
Most of the through trains from Manchester go to Milford Haven not Pembroke Dock anyway - I think it's just one or two evening workings that go to Pembroke Dock. Even then, the ferry terminal is not obvious from the station and probably quite a long walk (I don't even know how to get to it). If you want a ferry to Rosslare Fishguard Harbour is probably a far better bet.


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: Wizard on April 14, 2021, 09:42:06 am
If you electrify Chippenham to Bristol TM you surely have to then electrify Bristol Parkway to Bristol TM too, if only for the huge number of empty stock workings every day to and from the depot.

And you’d get a nice electric route from Bristol to Cardiff too. And hopefully Swansea too in time.


Title: Re: Should Cardiff to Swansea be electrified?
Post by: grahame on April 14, 2021, 10:53:34 am
If you electrify Chippenham to Bristol TM you surely have to then electrify Bristol Parkway to Bristol TM too, if only for the huge number of empty stock workings every day to and from the depot.

And you’d get a nice electric route from Bristol to Cardiff too. And hopefully Swansea too in time.

You don't "have to" ... but it makes sense to add Filton Bank fairly soon after Cockelbury Lane (east of Chippenenham) into Temple Meads. Also - should traffic requirements be such as to justify them - it would allow all-electric super fasts as planned via Badminton. I'm still going to throw in a vote for the Westerleigh to Bromsgrove case once Filton Bank is done, allowing all electric Bristol to Birmingham, Manchester and Glasgow and Edinburgh via the West Coast.



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