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Author Topic: First / MTR win South Western franchise 2017 - 2024, and CMA raises competition concerns (merged topic)  (Read 17797 times)
grahame
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« Reply #150 on: May 29, 2017, 12:41:02 PM »

Forty to fifty years ago were different times for the railways; it's tragic (but perhaps understandable) that zero prospect of re-instatement of a second track was seen by the mainstream, and indeed the line was "lucky" to hang on even as it did from Salisbury to Exeter.

We now have a line that can be characterised as a single line, with a few passing loops of double track, the odd one or two being dynamic.    Adding in extra loops may not do very much to increase capacity though, until there is so much double track that the line can be described as "double track with a few short single track sections".  Once it gets to that point (or if it's all done in one go!) you have different metrics for timetabling; for sure, still a single track through Tisbury station, but that's more than enough for a train every half hour each way - 10 to 15 minutes between them so very much reduced delays (and frustrating ones) for people waiting just short of their destination, and if the up train is seriously delayed, the down service could call and be clear of the short single track before it arrived, and vice versa.

What happens at Malton?   How does that work?   It's one platform only on a double track, with double crossovers, I believe?

I could see a similar situation with regards other widenings - keep the difficult bits single ...
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« Reply #151 on: May 29, 2017, 03:39:00 PM »

Sometime back in the mid-1990s when I worked for a certain namless Infrastructure company that used the initials RT, we looked in some depth at the Exeter-Salisbury line.  Somewhere I might have the 'sketches' that were produced to show the options for an hourly service throughout (including the Axminster dynamic loop that was proposed to extend from Axminster excl to Chard Junction to avoid having a second platform at Axminster) and a loop somewhere in the Whimple/Feniton area to allow a half hourly service between Exeter and Honiton.  It also included extension of Tisbury loop and the extension West of the existing double track section at Wiliton.  Like most good ideas at that time it never got funded, so into the bottom draw it all went Roll Eyes Tongue
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John R
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« Reply #152 on: June 20, 2017, 08:29:00 AM »

I see it's been announced this morning that Bombardier has won the order for 750 new vehicles. Great news for Derby.
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SandTEngineer
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« Reply #153 on: June 20, 2017, 08:56:44 AM »

I see it's been announced this morning that Bombardier has won the order for 750 new vehicles. Great news for Derby.

Yes.  Its announced here: http://www.firstgroupplc.com/news-and-media/latest-news/2017/20-06-17.aspx

Quote
FirstGroup and MTR order £895m new trains for South Western rail franchise

20 Jun 2017

FirsrGroup Bombardier South WesternMuch needed extra seats for suburban rail services into London Waterloo moved a step closer today as new South Western franchise operators FirstGroup and MTR signed an order for 90 new trains (750 new carriages, in five and 10 car formations).
 
The £895m fleet of “AVENTRA” trains, providing a 46% increase in peak capacity on the suburban routes into Waterloo, will be manufactured by Bombardier Transportation in Derby. The new trains will enhance the travelling experience for customers with free reliable Wi-Fi, at-seat charging points, real time information screens, air conditioning, wide gangways and wide doors to improve ease of boarding and alighting. The new trains will start to come into service from mid 2019 and will all be in place by December 2020.
 
The new trains will operate on the Windsor, Reading and West London suburban routes. The fleet will be maintained at Wimbledon depot, with South Western franchise employees undertaking the maintenance, supported by Bombardier employees who will supply technical advice and spares.
 
FirstGroup and MTR included the plans for these new trains as part of their winning bid for the South Western rail network, with the new franchise due to start on 20 August this year. They will be capable of 100mph, be highly energy efficient and will contribute to reduced journey times.
 
Funding for the trains has been led by sponsor Rock Rail and partners SL Capital (part of Standard Life Investments) and GLIL Infrastructure LLP, who all provided the equity investment. The senior debt is provided by a consortium of UK, European and North American institutional investors.  The trains will be leased to the new South Western rail franchise.
 
Transport Minister Paul Maynard said: “We are delivering the biggest rail modernisation programme for over a century and this franchise will provide more frequent trains, faster journeys and a more reliable service that passengers across the South Western network expect.
 
“This multi-million pound investment in a new fleet of British-built trains is excellent news for South Western passengers and the British economy. This investment reflects our commitment, and that of train operators, to put passengers at the heart of everything we do, and will improve journeys and target congestion.”
 
Steve Montgomery, Managing Director, First Rail said: "We have exciting plans for the South Western rail franchise and these new trains are an important step on the way to delivering an improved journey experience for our passengers.  We know from listening to passengers and stakeholders that alongside improved performance, what they want to see is additional seats and we will deliver this via these state-of-the-art trains."
 
Jeremy Long, CEO, European Business at MTR, said: “We look forward to working together with FirstGroup to introduce this new fleet of trains.”
 
Richard Hunter, UK Managing Director, Bombardier Transportation, said “We are thrilled to have won this important contract.  It demonstrates further confidence placed in this market leading rolling stock, designed and built in Britain.  This order is a fantastic endorsement of our skilled workforce and the quality of the products we design, engineer and manufacture here in the UK.  It will ensure a stable, long-term workload for our staff in Derby. AVENTRA offers enhanced performance and increased passenger capacity, which will play an important part in helping FirstGroup and MTR satisfy continued levels of passenger growth on the South Western network.”
 
Mark Swindell, Chief Executive Officer of Rock Rail said: “Rock Rail are delighted to be funding and leasing these trains which will bring a step change to the travelling experience for so many commuters. Our funders are leading pension and insurance institutions from both the UK and overseas who are directly investing in the UK’s long term economic infrastructure, on a basis that delivers significant cost savings and value for money enhancement for UK operators. We look forward to working closely with FirstGroup and MTR and all our partners to bring these trains into service.”
« Last Edit: June 20, 2017, 11:28:39 AM by SandTEngineer » Logged

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« Reply #154 on: June 20, 2017, 09:17:14 PM »

I see it's been announced this morning that Bombardier has won the order for 750 new vehicles. Great news for Derby.

Yes.  Its announced here: http://www.firstgroupplc.com/news-and-media/latest-news/2017/20-06-17.aspx

Quote
FirstGroup and MTR order £895m new trains for South Western rail franchise

20 Jun 2017

FirsrGroup Bombardier South WesternMuch needed extra seats for suburban rail services into London Waterloo moved a step closer today as new South Western franchise operators FirstGroup and MTR signed an order for 90 new trains (750 new carriages, in five and 10 car formations).
 
The £895m fleet of “AVENTRA” trains, providing a 46% increase in peak capacity on the suburban routes into Waterloo, will be manufactured by Bombardier Transportation in Derby. The new trains will enhance the travelling experience for customers with free reliable Wi-Fi, at-seat charging points, real time information screens, air conditioning, wide gangways and wide doors to improve ease of boarding and alighting. The new trains will start to come into service from mid 2019 and will all be in place by December 2020.
 
The new trains will operate on the Windsor, Reading and West London suburban routes. The fleet will be maintained at Wimbledon depot, with South Western franchise employees undertaking the maintenance, supported by Bombardier employees who will supply technical advice and spares.
 
FirstGroup and MTR included the plans for these new trains as part of their winning bid for the South Western rail network, with the new franchise due to start on 20 August this year. They will be capable of 100mph, be highly energy efficient and will contribute to reduced journey times.
 
Funding for the trains has been led by sponsor Rock Rail and partners SL Capital (part of Standard Life Investments) and GLIL Infrastructure LLP, who all provided the equity investment. The senior debt is provided by a consortium of UK, European and North American institutional investors.  The trains will be leased to the new South Western rail franchise.
 
Transport Minister Paul Maynard said: “We are delivering the biggest rail modernisation programme for over a century and this franchise will provide more frequent trains, faster journeys and a more reliable service that passengers across the South Western network expect.
 
“This multi-million pound investment in a new fleet of British-built trains is excellent news for South Western passengers and the British economy. This investment reflects our commitment, and that of train operators, to put passengers at the heart of everything we do, and will improve journeys and target congestion.”
 
Steve Montgomery, Managing Director, First Rail said: "We have exciting plans for the South Western rail franchise and these new trains are an important step on the way to delivering an improved journey experience for our passengers.  We know from listening to passengers and stakeholders that alongside improved performance, what they want to see is additional seats and we will deliver this via these state-of-the-art trains."
 
Jeremy Long, CEO, European Business at MTR, said: “We look forward to working together with FirstGroup to introduce this new fleet of trains.”
 
Richard Hunter, UK Managing Director, Bombardier Transportation, said “We are thrilled to have won this important contract.  It demonstrates further confidence placed in this market leading rolling stock, designed and built in Britain.  This order is a fantastic endorsement of our skilled workforce and the quality of the products we design, engineer and manufacture here in the UK.  It will ensure a stable, long-term workload for our staff in Derby. AVENTRA offers enhanced performance and increased passenger capacity, which will play an important part in helping FirstGroup and MTR satisfy continued levels of passenger growth on the South Western network.”
 
Mark Swindell, Chief Executive Officer of Rock Rail said: “Rock Rail are delighted to be funding and leasing these trains which will bring a step change to the travelling experience for so many commuters. Our funders are leading pension and insurance institutions from both the UK and overseas who are directly investing in the UK’s long term economic infrastructure, on a basis that delivers significant cost savings and value for money enhancement for UK operators. We look forward to working closely with FirstGroup and MTR and all our partners to bring these trains into service.”

As FirstMTR have declined to take the new trains that SWT have ordered for later this year, does this mean that the Windsor and Reading lines will now be getting new trains 18-24 months later than planned? My understanding was that the new SWT trains would be releasing stock for the Wimbledon Suburban lines so they could be extended to 10 carriages. The Waterloo upgrade programme in a few weeks time will finally allow 10 car trains to operate from platforms 1 to 4.
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John R
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« Reply #155 on: June 20, 2017, 09:24:22 PM »

Has there been any announcement regarding FirstMTR declining to take on the new trains?  The original plan was that they would be delivered and would be replaced in due course by their stock.  I can't imagine DfT would sign off a deal that would leave brand new trains in the sidings for 2 years.
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stuving
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« Reply #156 on: June 20, 2017, 11:36:31 PM »

Has there been any announcement regarding FirstMTR declining to take on the new trains?  The original plan was that they would be delivered and would be replaced in due course by their stock.  I can't imagine DfT would sign off a deal that would leave brand new trains in the sidings for 2 years.

The full service for Reading and Windsor, as required by the new franchise, has to start in December 2018. That will need the current new stock, so it has to be taken over, as the new new stock won't have arrived by then.

Thus Paul Clifton was reporting this on BBC South Today as the current fleets being "rejected". However, as he still insists on never mentioning RoSCOs at all, the report didn't make a lot of sense.
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paul7755
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« Reply #157 on: June 20, 2017, 11:43:08 PM »

Apparently SWT have been tweeting today that the 707s will be introduced into service.

Paul
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Rhydgaled
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« Reply #158 on: June 21, 2017, 09:13:25 AM »

Quote
The £895m fleet of “AVENTRA” trains, providing a 46% increase in peak capacity on the suburban routes into Waterloo, will be manufactured by Bombardier Transportation in Derby. The new trains will enhance the travelling experience for customers with free reliable Wi-Fi, at-seat charging points, real time information screens, air conditioning, wide gangways and wide doors to improve ease of boarding and alighting. The new trains will start to come into service from mid 2019 and will all be in place by December 2020.
The cheek... They list enhancements for passengers, including wide gangways, but the accompanying picture shows... no Unit-End Gangways (UEGs). Granted the illustration may be an impression of the 10-car sets, but given we have not seen an Aventra with UEGs I suspect the 5-car sets won't have them either. If you're not only having wide gangways but also promoting them as an enhanced feature then not allowing passengers to move between a pair of 5-car units in multiple leaves a 'bad taste'. If you want to run the railway in the best interests of passengers, then if you order units that are intended to run in multiple you should specify that said units must have UEGs.
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John R
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« Reply #159 on: June 21, 2017, 11:15:33 AM »

I don't see why UEGs are important for passengers on suburban trains?  Operationally I can see the attraction, but I wouldn't have thought pax would care less. The ability to easily walk through 5 carriages to find a less congested part of the train is a big step forward (as well as the additional space the wide gangways give).  So I would have thought 2 x 5 carriage wide gangway sets with no UEG is still a big step forward from 2 x 4 separated vehicles with a UEG in between. 
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bradshaw
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« Reply #160 on: June 21, 2017, 12:34:08 PM »

The July edition of Modern Railways p81 has a headline "707 introduction stalls".
Industry sources suggesting test running has stopped, units not achieving the required fault free running. This with uncertainty over the Waterloo works together with the franchise change are seen as likely reasons.
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stuving
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« Reply #161 on: June 21, 2017, 01:40:20 PM »

Here's a few salient facts:
  • Rail reported on the 707 order in 2014, saying in part -
    Quote
    A new fleet of trains has been ordered by South West Trains (SWT) even though they may not be operating the franchise when they are delivered!

    The trains are being built by Siemens and purchased by Angel Trains who will lease them to South West Trains or whoever is running the franchise in 2017. This is why the Government in the form of the Department for Transport (DfT) was part of the announcement as the DfT will be awarding the next franchise by 2017 when the trains are due to be delivered.

    So why has SWT become involved in this deal? It puts SWT in pole position to retain the franchise when bidding commences in 2016 and somebody has to order them and the DfT will presumably ensure the trains will be used by the next franchisee guaranteeing a lease income for Angel Trains who has taken the financial risk in this deal.

    ...

    The 150 Desiro carriages will cost around £210 million and can be expected to operate for 30 years under the Siemens brand of ‘Desiro City’ and ought to be welcomed by passengers on the crowded commuter routes using Waterloo. The new trains will be similar to the Class 700 trains being built and now under test for use on Thameslink routes from 2016.
    Did DfT did give Angel Trains any reason to believe the trains would be part of any new franchise? I've no idea.
  • £210M for 30x5-car comes to £1.4m per vehicle.
  • The SWR order splits as 30x5-car plus 60x10-car, for which £750M comes to £1.04M per vehicle. That's some discount, and it's not due to the Brexit-inspired drop in the pound's value, as the 707s' price was quoted in 2014 Sterling terms. If anything the reverse applies, since a significant fraction of Bombardier's costs will be for imported components now costing more.
  • SWR are claiming 30% increase in peak seats, and 46% capacity increase (also for the peak), both relative to today's service. I wonder - would that be fewer seats from Reading than the 458s would give with the new timetable?
  • The new order was reported (e.g. on the BBC) as being the same as the Crossrail train, which obviously isn't true. For a start, they are to be capable of 100 mph - now isn't that useful?
  • Who cares about gangways, will they have toilets? Reading is twice the 40 minutes "like on the underground" limit.
« Last Edit: June 22, 2017, 05:55:45 PM by stuving » Logged
ChrisB
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« Reply #162 on: June 21, 2017, 01:45:14 PM »

Hmm - surely the 'like the Underground limit' time is equivalent to the Aldgate - Amersham trip? That's over an hour.
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paul7755
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« Reply #163 on: June 21, 2017, 02:52:29 PM »

Hmm - surely the 'like the Underground limit' time is equivalent to the Aldgate - Amersham trip? That's over an hour.
The new trains will all have toilets, First's announcement in March explicitly said so.

However here is no time or distance limit that forces rolling stock to have toilets.   Many have searched for it but nothing has ever been found.  Southern run Brighton to Portsmouth Harbour all stations stoppers without facilities...  Take about 90 mins.

I've always reckoned most of the percentage peak capacity increases declared by First would have happened anyway under Stagecoach.  As we know, the First group order for 750 x 20m new vehicles replaces 742 x 20m existing vehicles.  So the overall capacity increase is mainly down to the 707s and the internal cascade of 450s onto other mainline routes, which was a CP5 HLOS agreement with DfT.   IE the new trains will now be different, but the overall vehicle numbers are very similar. First seem to be highlighting something that SWT had already organised?

It is the 18 x 5 car 442s that are the real bonus capacity, and they will also allow the 450 & 444 fleets to be used differently.

Paul
« Last Edit: June 21, 2017, 03:09:07 PM by paul7755 » Logged
stuving
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« Reply #164 on: June 21, 2017, 03:33:07 PM »

Hmm - surely the 'like the Underground limit' time is equivalent to the Aldgate - Amersham trip? That's over an hour.
The new trains will all have toilets, First's announcement in March explicitly said so.

However here is no time or distance limit that forces rolling stock to have toilets.   Many have searched for it but nothing has ever been found.  Southern run Brighton to Portsmouth Harbour all stations stoppers without facilities...  Take about 90 mins.
...
Paul

I'd missed that - I take back my implied criticism of SWR, especially as the provision will now apply to the suburban stock too. In the rehash of that release on their staff website, that's made clearer: "Toilets on all mainland trains". And about time too.

The point I was trying to make very briefly putting 'like the Underground limit' in quotes is that lack of toilet provision is uncivilised, and its removal a clear degradation of service level and comfort. The best argument against that is probably "it's accepted on underground trains". Of course if there is a continuous stream of complaints even that isn't a good case. And no, the Met isn't 'like the underground'. It may now be operated as part of it, but it was built with other ideas in mind.
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