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Author Topic: A day in the life of ... 2018  (Read 698 times)
grahame
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« on: January 05, 2018, 09:27:20 pm »

I caught the train from Melksham today at 14:29 ... my first journey of the year apart from a 10 minute ride from Chippenham to Melksham yesterday.  I've read the data coming through my feeds - keen to see how it was on the ground and here user reactions.

Just 4 cars in the car park as I walked down station approach.  Alarming; I would expect to see most of the spaces filled on a Monday to Friday, but then of the two morning trains to Swindon, one had been 35 minutes late and the other cancelled,  A fortunate accident indeed that the 35 minute delay on one had put it just a few minutes behind the path of the other.

14:29 at Melshkam to Swindon ... +6 -3 -> 22  25/9

Ah well - one of the quieter runs on any day; can't grumble too much

Chippenham - with the station upgrade, Steamers have been pushed into an inadequate temporary hole ... still a good cup of coffee, even if my appetite wasn't appeased by a slim selection of packeted snacks.  They're scheduled to be in their refurbed place on 22nd, thank goodness.

Met up with my visitor, touring a number of Community Rail lines this week; he reports trains he's familiar with using being quieter than normal, and that other CRPs suggest the same on their lines; still a thin week at the tail of the Christmas period.

15:35 from Chippenham.  Left with 43; -12 +7 at Melksham 50/19

16:21 from Westbury. -9 +6 -> 32 at Melksham  41/15

17:36 from Swindon. 80 into Melksham.  -30 +8  88/38

All rather better than I had expected.  A great deal changed; a 2 car 158, single door at Melksham (and that was slowing it down!). Other trains that weren't the norm seen at Swindon.  Barriers - though not yet in use - at Chippenham. Complete absence of printed tiemtables from the literarure racks at Swindon (and I sis not venture to ticket offices elsewhere).  Westbury train leaving from a different platform at Swindon.

Some things still the same.  The quick journey when compared to travelling any other way.  The TVM out of order.  Newcomers looking lost and needing help. The smiling faces and tales told by those I have met before.

Turns out the departure board at Melksham had just said "delayed" for the 07:19 during the morning's problems, and a couple of folks with cars had offered lifts to others who were concerned.  Helping out in adversity. Ah - I love the community rail thing!

Some pictures ... no prizes for guessing these - they're all pretty close to home.  But virtually every one is a picture that would have been different a month ago - that's how much is a-changing!


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tomL
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« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2018, 11:37:32 pm »

Something seems a bit off about 8, pretty sure its Swindon though  Grin
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grahame
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« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2018, 05:05:02 am »

Something seems a bit off about 8, pretty sure its Swindon though  Grin

Yes - Swindon, where time is a moving feast ...



It never ceases to amaze me how the software that drives these displays seems to be missing a final piece of logic that does some rudimentary checks and says "are we saying something that make sense here?".  Even though they must get their feed from the same sources that drive signals, they seem to poles apart in terms of getting it right every time ...

With the TransWilts up in principle from 1 to 2 carriages this week, and the Golden Valley service up from 2 to 3, the bay at Swindon can't hold the 17:36 (Westbury) and the 17:54 (Cheltenham Spa) departures at the same time, so the 17:36 TransWilts is leaving from platform 1.  Seems to work with London services calling at platform 3 during the TransWilts layover.   For 2019, the TransWilts will be back in the bay as the Golden Valley will be served by through trains from London.  Perhaps at a later date TransWilts will be class 769 which won't fit in the bay, or will be calling at Platform 4 on its way through from Oxford ... we have a real moveable feast here!
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RA
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« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2018, 11:29:30 am »

With the TransWilts up in principle from 1 to 2 carriages this week, and the Golden Valley service up from 2 to 3, the bay at Swindon can't hold the 17:36 (Westbury) and the 17:54 (Cheltenham Spa) departures at the same time, so the 17:36 TransWilts is leaving from platform 1.  Seems to work with London services calling at platform 3 during the TransWilts layover.   For 2019, the TransWilts will be back in the bay as the Golden Valley will be served by through trains from London.  Perhaps at a later date TransWilts will be class 769 which won't fit in the bay, or will be calling at Platform 4 on its way through from Oxford ... we have a real moveable feast here!
Although not normally required, If need be to free up a through platform at Swindon there are a couple of shunts that the unit for the 17:36 departure can do. A choice of shunting out on the Up Kemble or Down Kemble lines (behind signals SW1310 or SW1312) or the one that seems to be more favourable with the signallers is to shunt out on the Up Swindon Reception line (behind Ground Position Light SW6521). Both of these give the option of being routed back to either platform 1 or 3 (SW1310 platform 1 only), allowing a bit of flexibility if the London services are a bit awry.
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