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181  Journey by Journey / Bristol (WECA) Commuters / Re: Metrowest Status on: April 03, 2019, 05:38:11 pm
Surprised no-one's offered Briton Ferry Road yet as the height of the "Road" absurdity. Only about two miles from Briton Ferry, but on the wrong side of the Neath estuary and involving a boat back when it existed (perhaps unsurprisingly, it closed in 1936). I can't imagine any case in which a passenger would ever have chosen to use that station to get to Briton Ferry. Even from the Brecon direction, it would have made more sense to get off at Neath Riverside and either walk over to General station for the South Wales Main Line or get on a bus or (before 1920) tram.
182  Journey by Journey / Bristol (WECA) Commuters / Re: Sewweb - South East Wales and West of England Business link on: April 02, 2019, 08:07:14 am
Note the talk of Llanwern, St Mellons, and through services to Ebbw Vale.   Just because there's a suggestion of a well sited station at Pilning Westgate doesn't mean its well sighted for every single journey - that's why we have over 2,500 stations each in a different place (OK, I grant you that 2 in St Budeaux are in the same place  Grin )

St Mellon's is probably the last place I'd add a local station between Newport and Cardiff (it looks about as promising as Baglan, and for much the same reasons). Splott, Rumney, Marshfield, and Tredegar Park would all be better locations for where people actually live – the estates in the east of Cardiff would be better served by Rumney as it would fit the bus network better. But I'm not sure that feeding anything more into the exercise in excessive compactness that is Cardiff Central is a good idea – if we're doing crayonism, let's have the Taff Vale line descend into a tunnel at Cathays, have its own underground Queen Street station out of the way of the Rhymney line, and then rise up again for Splott.
183  Sideshoots - associated subjects / The Lighter Side / Re: Llangollen priest to bless beer for 'real ale train' on: April 01, 2019, 10:59:55 am
PRR (Princes Risborough) = Princes Risborough, I think
184  All across the Great Western territory / Looking forward - after Coronavirus to 2045 / Re: Call for TfL to Take Over London Infrastructure from NR on: March 30, 2019, 08:09:23 am
TfL» (Transport for London - about) needs to understand that its Elizabeth Line is just one user of one part of the GWML (Great Western Main Line). It will not even be the sole user of the relief/slow lines - from what I have read outside peak hours it will share track with stopping GWR (Great Western Railway) trains between Reading and Paddington. The line is the main artery of the rail system to a large part of the west of Britain, not a branch of London's suburban railway network.

Maybe it needs six-tracking like the WCML (West Coast Main Line), so that TfL can have its equivalent of the DC (Direct Current) lines to play with, and the Main and Relief lines can be used for trains that at least get west of Reading.
185  Journey by Journey / London to South Wales / Re: Reverse Formation HSTs on: March 29, 2019, 07:40:43 am
Thanks for trying, Chris. I can well imagine that it hasn't been the easiest day for getting hold of people. Yeah, not time-critical at all.
186  Journey by Journey / Shorter journeys in Devon / Re: Man dies at Stoke Canon level crossing and related incidents - 28 Mar 2019 on: March 28, 2019, 10:06:58 am
The National Rail website is currently offering the following brilliant advice:

Alternative travel options:

CrossCountry customers may also use their tickets on the following services:
Great Western Railway between Penzance and Bristol Temple Meads


Great Western Railway customers may use their tickets on the following services
CrossCountry between Penzance and Bristol Temple Meads
187  Journey by Journey / London to South Wales / Reverse Formation HSTs on: March 27, 2019, 05:15:00 pm
I'm enjoying the continued HSTs (High Speed Train) on the 1445 Paddington to Swansea, but does anyone know why it's been consistently in reverse formation since last Thursday? It hasn't even been the same set each day (although I'm glad to get 43002 again this afternoon). I understand that the diagram originates in St Philip's Marsh -- why don't they just run this train out of the other end of the depot if it's back-to-front?

The reverse formation causes prolonged stops at Cardiff Central, where the station design channels people to wait on the wide bit of the platform at the Down end (accentuating the issue of the exits being at the front at Neath and Swansea). The scrum at the door next to the buffet that results is ridiculous.
188  Journey by Journey / To Oxford, Didcot and Reading from West / Re: Longest distance to walk between platforms in a station on: March 24, 2019, 07:06:52 pm
From the Rodalies to metro line 4 at Barcelona Passeig de Gràcia has to be a good contender. Terrible station.
189  All across the Great Western territory / Buses and other ways to travel / Re: Where does my time go - 24 minutes moving but 68 minute journey on: March 24, 2019, 02:57:42 pm
The 91 and 85 leave within 5 mins of each other from Newquay yet the majority of passengers go for the 91 for speed.

..and both say Newquay on the front - none of this Ealing Broadway, Radley or Cholsey nonsense....

Do not make the mistake of taking the no. 46 bus to Paddington from King's Cross (56 minutes) - wait for the 205 (26 minutes)!

The weird thing is that the 210 makes the mirror image to the 46's hairpin turn a little further north in Hampstead. It's as if someone's perversely mismatched the route segments.
190  All across the Great Western territory / Buses and other ways to travel / Re: Where does my time go - 24 minutes moving but 68 minute journey on: March 24, 2019, 11:03:54 am
I imagine less than half one's time actually being on the move is pretty typical. For instance, here's my journey into work:

Raw data:
Walking from my house to the station   13
Waiting for the train   5
On a moving train   40
Intermediate stops   3
Changing trains   4
Walking from the station to my office   8
Being early for work/desk breakfast   24
(for a total of 97 minutes)

Interestingly, Google predicts enough traffic to think that driving from my house to my office would take 75 minutes to get there for my start time (going up to 85 on the way back). So once one adds in finding a street just far enough out of town not to cost some extortionate daily rate in parking, then walking back in, driving would be a very slow and not very practical option. (But when having a nice commute by train is a factor in where one lives and works, this was probably going to be an inevitable consequence.)

As for improving bus journey times, I don't know Bath well at all, but if it's anything like Cardiff, the key issues will be bottlenecks on the outskirts of the city centre. For instance, Cardiff Council could improve bus journey times no end by banning cars from all of the bridges over the Taff except the A4232 and the M4 (and any council that tried this would immediately lose the next election).

The other thing that makes buses really unattractive is the way that so many British cities have radial routes that get into the centre and terminate, rather than continuing out the other side. This gets particularly ridiculous when one throws in pedestrian zones, so that buses will tend to terminate from both sides on the near side of the centre (forcing a long walk to interchange) or on silly one-way loops with a massive layover half-way round (a recipe for circuitous and slow journeys – I don't know why bus companies don't understand the basic point that most passengers do not want to travel in circles).
191  All across the Great Western territory / The Wider Picture in the United Kingdom / Re: An Inspector Calls on: March 24, 2019, 08:32:45 am
Looking at the court listings for Newcastle-upon-Tyne Crown Court for 6 February suggests it may be this case:

06-02-2019   Newcastle-upon-Tyne   9   T20170858
Db Cargo Uk Ltd
Details:   For Sentence - Case Started - 10:52
For Sentence - Case adjourned until 11:15 - 11:08
For Sentence - Resume - 11:29
For Sentence - Case adjourned until 14:00 - 12:59
For Sentence - Resume - 14:08
192  All across the Great Western territory / Across the West / Re: My final ride on a full length HST? on: March 22, 2019, 06:25:36 pm
I keep thinking that it must be my last HST (High Speed Train) ride, but we got one on the 1648 back from Cardiff again tonight. Unfortunately, the 1548 was cancelled; so I got the classic shot of why HSTs are the best trains on the network:
193  All across the Great Western territory / Across the West / Re: My final ride on a full length HST? on: March 21, 2019, 05:04:15 pm
OK ... I started this thread a couple of days ago thinking I had had my final GWR (Great Western Railway) HST (High Speed Train) ride ... guess what turns up today:

I too am pleased to be wrong, to have found the buffet car on leaving Cardiff, and to be able to relax with my beer on my Thursday evening journey home.
194  All across the Great Western territory / Fare's Fair / Re: Whwn a passenger makes a genuine mistake... on: March 21, 2019, 12:08:15 pm
The tearful young woman who came in with a Birmingham to Bicester ticket (who was probably misunderstood by the person at Brum who she asked which was the train to Bicester);

Quite possibly related to the tearful young lady I once witnessed being lent the guard's mobile phone on a Virgin West Coast Pendolino, back in the days when Virgin also had Cross Country. New Street had been having one of its "this is a platform alteration" days, and the Euston train ended up on the platform the Southampton one was previously meant to be on. So this lady with her ticket to Leamington Spa ended up on the right coloured train, which then stopped at International and Coventry as expected. Unfortunately, she then discovered that the next stop was Watford Junction.
195  All across the Great Western territory / Across the West / Re: My final ride on a full length HST? on: March 20, 2019, 07:58:15 am
Probably already had mine on the 1648 back from Cardiff (1445 ex Pad) last Wednesday (13 March):
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