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Author Topic: South Western Railway - talk to West Wilts Rail User Group  (Read 1315 times)
grahame
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« on: September 02, 2017, 04:13:54 pm »

Tuesday 12th September 2017, 19:00 for 19:30, Civic Centre, Warminster.   West Wilts Rail User Group.  Non-members welcome.

Talk on "South Western Railway" by "A senior representative from First Group"

See http://www.wwrug.org.uk/flyer.html for further details





Edit note: Minor correction to grahame's spelling, purely in the interests of clarity - 'Non' for 'None'. CfN. Smiley
« Last Edit: September 02, 2017, 11:46:15 pm by Chris from Nailsea » Logged

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Chris from Nailsea
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« Reply #1 on: September 03, 2017, 01:17:45 am »

Purely speculation on my part, but is it possible that the 'senior representative from First Group' could be Andy Mellors, raising his profile as the recently appointed Managing Director of South Western Railway?  Undecided

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grahame
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« Reply #2 on: September 03, 2017, 01:58:54 am »

Purely speculation on my part, but is it possible that the 'senior representative from First Group' could be Andy Mellors, raising his profile as the recently appointed Managing Director of South Western Railway?  Undecided

Possible but I think unlikely; the advert says "First Group" not "First / MTR" so I would place shorter odds on it being a member of First Group's bid team.  I don't have name(s) to hand, but post-award pre-takeover there was at least one member of the team going around and helping prepare the launch. And this talk has been scheduled for a long time - long before the name of the new MD was known.
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grahame
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« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2017, 07:37:36 am »

Purely speculation on my part, but is it possible that the 'senior representative from First Group' could be Andy Mellors, raising his profile as the recently appointed Managing Director of South Western Railway?  Undecided



It was our good friend Phil Dominey, who has been "tuped" across from Stagecoach.  Phil did a good (more than good) job with SWT on the community / liaison / accessibility front and is a professional railwayman at heart with an excellent positive eye for the customer and for the railway. I'm delighted to see him with SWR; there are far more similarities than differences between what the two alternatives were - and at the community level, First (GWR) has become one of the beacons of good practise (halo slipping a bit at the moment, folks!) so he should do very well with SWR and I look forward to continuing to work with him.

Lots of facts and figures ...

* Weymouth departures by SWR become 1 an hour to London and 1 an hour to Portsmouth, rather than 2 to London. That adds an extra service each hour from Southampton to Portsmouth.  Southampton - London capacity will be enhanced to fill the gap

* Changes in the franchise in the SWR diesel area (i.e. Salisbury depot based stuff) will be implemented in December 2020, upon the completion of a refurbishment of the 158 and 159 fleets based there.  There will be a consultation very much sooner than that on service patterns from that date, to help ensure that the 13% (or was it 13 minute?) journey time saving to Salisbury, and perhaps a little bit more beyond to Exeter, is implemented in the best way for the public

* 35% in each class of train remaining in the franchise (except the 483s) will have automatic passenger counters fitted to help gather data about train loading, and 40% will have rail defect detection so that the yellow banana can be spared visits to places like Portsmouth (also allows developing problems to be identified very much earlier and puts up reliability).

* WiFi for passengers on all SWR operated stations and trains (except the 483s); on train WiFi to be faster, and trains to have a 1Gb backbone with on board server of entertainment.  Power at each seat set, USB at each seat

* Ticket discounts for 16 to 18 year olds

* Annual season ticket scheme with payment by monthly direct debit for 11 months rather than full price to always be paid up front/

* 701 fleet features promoted; longer (5 or 10 car) trains, 2+2 seating, fully load reporting so people can find where to go on the train for a seat, disabled toilets, wide gangways between carriages, 100 mph top speed.  It was suggested that replacement of the 707s which are just arriving may have surprised some, but that new homes are already pencilled in for them.

* SWR very encouraging to work with stakeholders on development of new stations and potentially services.  Amongst those mentions - 2 in the Guildford area and Wilton Parkway. Also with honourable mention (and a note there's an eye open) - Fawley and Porton, Chard Junction and Cranbrook 2.

* Talk of co-operation / working together across the previously-fought territories of southern Wiltshire, Dorset and south Somerset and south east Devon. It's very much hoped that positives can flow.   Likewise hope of train and bus (where the buses are First group run) integration, while retaining good bus connections where they exist to Stagecoach services.

* SWT was very much lighter on community and stakeholder engagement than First franchises such as GWR are, and there will be regional managers, a community rail manager and an accessibility supremo rather than just the current tiny team that SWR took over.

As what was his first talk to such a group as WWRUG with his new hat on, there were a couple of "don't know"s from Phil - why there will be HVAC covering on the windows, why drivers will have a tablet docking station, and other (none)critical issues.  No doubt we'll learn about these in due course. Overall, so good to see Phil and to hear so much positive from him.  And, yes, he took away a couple of ideas and questions from the audience to feed back - keeping his ear to the ground as ever!


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John R
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« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2017, 08:18:56 am »

It was suggested that replacement of the 707s which are just arriving may have surprised some, but that new homes are already pencilled in for them.


Interesting, and consistent with some comments Grayling has made. My guess is they are earmarked for the West Midlands suburban units.  A fleet of 20x 6 car and 10x 3 car sets would nicely cover the Cross City line and the locals to Wolverhampton and the Chase Line. (Apologies if this is an immediate drift of thread.)
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grahame
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« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2017, 08:29:42 am »

It was suggested that replacement of the 707s which are just arriving may have surprised some, but that new homes are already pencilled in for them.


Interesting, and consistent with some comments Grayling has made. My guess is they are earmarked for the West Midlands suburban units.  A fleet of 20x 6 car and 10x 3 car sets would nicely cover the Cross City line and the locals to Wolverhampton and the Chase Line. (Apologies if this is an immediate drift of thread.)

They're third rail only though , aren't they?
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John R
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« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2017, 08:35:07 am »

Easily convertible though.  The leasing companies require that to ensure maximum marketability over a fleet's lifetime.
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Timmer
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« Reply #7 on: September 13, 2017, 09:05:05 am »

Easily convertible though.  The leasing companies require that to ensure maximum marketability over a fleet's lifetime.
Indeed, during testing a set had panto graphs fitted which were removed prior to entering service with SWT.
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paul7755
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« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2017, 09:52:32 am »

Easily convertible though.  The leasing companies require that to ensure maximum marketability over a fleet's lifetime.
Indeed, during testing a set had panto graphs fitted which were removed prior to entering service with SWT.
I'm thinking they are still fitted, there are supposed to have been tests of them (units 1 and 2) fairly recently on the ECML.  Little or no reason to remove them now.

Paul
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paul7755
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« Reply #9 on: September 13, 2017, 10:04:43 am »


* Weymouth departures by SWR become 1 an hour to London and 1 an hour to Portsmouth, rather than 2 to London. That adds an extra service each hour from Southampton to Portsmouth.  Southampton - London capacity will be enhanced to fill the gap


The track access application for this shows it it to be pretty useless as a through service.  It also stated is to be a combination of 3 services:

a.  the existing Portsmouth to Southampton all stations stopper,
b.  the Southampton to Poole leg of the existing Poole service, (which stands for 30 mins at Brockenhurst to be overtaken),
c.  the Poole to Weymouth leg of the current all stations Weymouth service.

There is to be a separate additional Portsmouth to Southampton semi fast, but where it fits in the clockface isn't stated.

It is certain that a through end to end journey from Weymouth or Poole to Portsmouth will be much faster using the existing connections at Southampton.

I don't think there's any evidence of extra services from Southampton to Waterloo, but plenty of opportunities to use longer trains on the route as there'll be more 450s and 444s available from internal cascades.

FMTR have still got to get the Weymouth changes past yet another consultation.   The BBC as an example are treating it as bad news, despite it being clearly proposed by DfT in the ITT...

Paul
 
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Timmer
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« Reply #10 on: September 13, 2017, 10:35:40 am »

Going back to the original Weymouth-London timetable wouldn't be a bad idea. I agree the value of the Portsmouth-Weymouth service is being totally overhyped because the end to end journey time will be very long.
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ChrisB
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« Reply #11 on: September 13, 2017, 10:41:12 am »

* Annual season ticket scheme with payment by monthly direct debit for 11 months rather than full price to always be paid up front

Talking of sneaky price rises, isn't there one hidden in here?
I thought an annual season weas based on 40 weeklies, so a 12 week discount. Paying for 11 months equates to 47 or 48 depending on how December falls in your cycle of weeks. So you're paying 7/8 weeks more for your annual this way. I hope this is explained when the 'offer' is publicly announced.

Yes, it's a month off if paying monthly, but you're sure paying a hefty credit charge if you think you are buying an annual (does it also come as a Gold Card, I wonder, if its meant to be an annual?)
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John R
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« Reply #12 on: September 13, 2017, 10:47:24 am »

I think what they mean is the cost of the annual ticket is spread over 11 months. That's reasonable as if it were spread over all 12 months then passengers could cancel mid term and have paid an annual fare equivalent for a part year.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2017, 11:02:05 am by John R » Logged
ChrisB
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« Reply #13 on: September 13, 2017, 11:06:05 am »

I hope so - and I wonder how they retrieve said ticket if one cancels their direct debit at any stage?....
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John R
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« Reply #14 on: September 13, 2017, 11:27:46 am »

I hope so - and I wonder how they retrieve said ticket if one cancels their direct debit at any stage?....

That's a really good question!
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