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Author Topic: The lesser spotted Graham?  (Read 434 times)
plymothian
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« on: July 18, 2018, 06:09:09 am »

Graham, were you on platform 3 at Exeter St David's yesterday at around 15.55 having just alighted from an SWR and debating what to do next, eventually crossing over to platform 5?
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grahame
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« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2018, 06:57:14 am »

Graham, were you on platform 3 at Exeter St David's yesterday at around 15.55 having just alighted from an SWR and debating what to do next, eventually crossing over to platform 5?

Pretty close. Yes, arrived on platform from Exeter Central. Yes - crossed to 5.  But only partly debating what to do - more concluding discussions with other community rail folks concerning mutual interests that debating what to do next. We had come from a very interesting Community Rail Officers briefing concerning the current performance issues of GWR trains - it's a pretty poor show at present; further meeting that looks somewhat ahead today and I'll be writing lots up in what is he very opposite of the Lighter Side.  And although there will be a community rail bias on those comments, there will be massive leakage into covering other services which don't have community rail.
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plymothian
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« Reply #2 on: July 18, 2018, 04:28:19 pm »

Seeing as we didn't speak, you can tell I was reticent about interrupting what looked like important people having an important conversation.
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grahame
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« Reply #3 on: July 18, 2018, 05:20:39 pm »

Seeing as we didn't speak, you can tell I was reticent about interrupting what looked like important people having an important conversation.

Understood.  But always happy to put a face to a forum handle.

Great thing about community & rail folks is that even if they've been around the business and got a lot more experience than I have (that applied to all three), they're also great people who appreciate that the passenger / user / member / volunteer is paramount. Brief hello AOK always (but you weren't to know that) and if there is an urgent / critical conversation to be concluded before a train is caught, I / we would let you know.
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #4 on: July 18, 2018, 06:00:17 pm »

Graham, were you on platform 3 at Exeter St David's yesterday at around 15.55 having just alighted from an SWR and debating what to do next, eventually crossing over to platform 5?

  there will be massive leakage into covering other services which don't have community rail.

I look forward to reading it......but that's not a nice image - trouble with retention tanks again?
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plymothian
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« Reply #5 on: July 18, 2018, 10:26:08 pm »

Graham, were you on platform 3 at Exeter St David's yesterday at around 15.55 having just alighted from an SWR and debating what to do next, eventually crossing over to platform 5?

  there will be massive leakage into covering other services which don't have community rail.

I look forward to reading it......but that's not a nice image - trouble with retention tanks again?

Probably took a Voyager onward from Exeter.
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grahame
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« Reply #6 on: July 19, 2018, 11:45:28 am »

I look forward to reading it......but that's not a nice image - trouble with retention tanks again?

I hinted that I would write up my Tuesday trip to Exeter, and I'm going to give a summary here - also including some notes on yesteday in Bristol which was a further rail meeting.

Tuesday was a Community Rail Officer update briefing from GWR / Jo Graham. Very clearly, train performance in the GWR area has fallen and is well below where it should be. There have been other failures of performance elsewhere in the UK, and the metircs of these failures have some commonality and some differences. Asking the question "what's gone wrong" and leading on to "who's fault is it" tends to point to lots of things going wrong, and to all sorts of organisations - Government including DfT and Network Rail, train operators, and other rail industry companies.   The intent is to learn from what has gone wrong and to put actions into place to bring things back on track.   That includes more realistic targets, better communications to have the pasenger better aware, and updated / modified system of work and staffing to do better.  Shared with us are some 32 pages of detailed "recovery plan" including some 50 identified isssues - short, medium or long term and notes as to how they're being approached.

Although some issues are short term, many are not. We are cautioned for our community rail lines that there's no magic wand to be waved to have everying running to target performance levels in the next days, weeks, or months.

You'll note I'm talking generalities.  It's difficult to know where to start / what to share.   I have pages of specific notes ranging from delayed clearance for 16x units to go into Portsmouth Harbour to 800 maintenance schedule changes pulling a time-consuming job done once a year back to a job that's done once a quarter.  Add to that - "in hindsight we shouldn't have only trained Penzance drivers on the Castles as we have a problem if it needs a new crew near Exeter or to get it home on Sunday night" and pages more along similar lines.  You'll note I've picked one Network Rail, one supplier and one GWR issues here.  With the extra workload of so many changes - all across the UK rail business - there's a lack of the right experienced staff in the right place.  Some of that is a training issue, but some is recruitment and some so specialist that the better solution is to ensure that the key critical jobs are prioritised for these specialists.

TransWilts has been the fastest growing service in the area for a number of years. Alas, for the year to date passengr journeys have fallen.  Can't say I'm surprised - and yet talk turned to "why is TransWilts the smallest fall of any of the lines hit by the performace disaster".

Wednesday was a 'Central' timetable meeting.   The December 2018 or January 2019 changes to the public timetable have been put on hold. It is very painfully appreciated by Network Rail and the Departmemt for Transport that the May changes went very wrong, and there's a need to avoid more of the same next January.  One of the resource shortages mentioned above - from Tuesday - is timetable planning at the Network Rail level - we know the frustrtion of not knowing what will be running during engineering until a few days ahead, compounded (it has be be said) but not knowing what can be crewed until the night before. You don't take that broken situation and make it worse by recasting the whole timetable.  There will need to be some changes in January - the three remaining roads at Old Oak Common, and the depot at Landore, have to go.   More trains need to run up and down Filton bank to provide IET units from Stoke Gifford to run Temple Meads based passenger diagrams. BUT the change are not "the biggest change in living memory"; new trains will be running with old schedules with - it is anticipated - the timetable change coming in May for the summer, with further changes in September 2019 for the Autum / Winter / Spring ongoing timetables.

So - Wednesday's meeting which was supposed to be looking at the January timetable, back from NR approval and "are there any little local fixes we should be asking for last minute?".  Alas, GWR's timetable planners have now a further urgent load on them to make new plans for changes in January to allow the current timetable to continue to run, but with the infrastructure altered under them, so the meeting dropped back into one of capturing concrens on the best part of 100 pages of data.  Sometimes clouds have a silver lining, and it has become an opportunity to formally (re)lodge issues of concern. From a TransWilts viewpoint, I'm delighted to save a somewhat wider opportunity to input / request tuning on the timetable that should be running by this time next year, as the draft gave every appearance of needing significant work to ensure it works properly.

Follow up post - in the TransWilts CRP board area - looking at Wiltshire issues from both Tuesday and Wednesday.  That's the "by request only" board, and about 60 members are currently in there.   Other regular posters, please ask ... happy to share the information; the idea of keeping it separate is to avoid flooding the public areas with even more Chippenham, Melksham and Trowbridge minutiae!
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grahame
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« Reply #7 on: July 20, 2018, 09:28:31 am »

Follow up post - in the TransWilts CRP board area - looking at Wiltshire issues from both Tuesday and Wednesday.  That's the "by request only" board, and about 60 members are currently in there.   Other regular posters, please ask ... happy to share the information; the idea of keeping it separate is to avoid flooding the public areas with even more Chippenham, Melksham and Trowbridge minutiae!

Post added to thread at http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=20084.0 . Also includes other Wiltshire suggestions - Berks and Hants tunings.  Please ask me by p.m. if you are not a member of the TransWilts CRP board but would like to join.
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martyjon
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« Reply #8 on: July 20, 2018, 09:57:56 am »

Follow up post - in the TransWilts CRP board area - looking at Wiltshire issues from both Tuesday and Wednesday.  That's the "by request only" board, and about 60 members are currently in there.   Other regular posters, please ask ... happy to share the information; the idea of keeping it separate is to avoid flooding the public areas with even more Chippenham, Melksham and Trowbridge minutiae!

Post added to thread at http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=20084.0 . Also includes other Wiltshire suggestions - Berks and Hants tunings.  Please ask me by p.m. if you are not a member of the TransWilts CRP board but would like to join.

Grahame, can you check if I am a member of the board and if not can you add me please.
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grahame
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« Reply #9 on: July 20, 2018, 10:00:57 am »

Follow up post - in the TransWilts CRP board area - looking at Wiltshire issues from both Tuesday and Wednesday.  That's the "by request only" board, and about 60 members are currently in there.   Other regular posters, please ask ... happy to share the information; the idea of keeping it separate is to avoid flooding the public areas with even more Chippenham, Melksham and Trowbridge minutiae!

Post added to thread at http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=20084.0 . Also includes other Wiltshire suggestions - Berks and Hants tunings.  Please ask me by p.m. if you are not a member of the TransWilts CRP board but would like to join.

Grahame, can you check if I am a member of the board and if not can you add me please.

You are (already) ... the link should work for you.
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martyjon
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« Reply #10 on: July 20, 2018, 10:25:12 am »

Follow up post - in the TransWilts CRP board area - looking at Wiltshire issues from both Tuesday and Wednesday.  That's the "by request only" board, and about 60 members are currently in there.   Other regular posters, please ask ... happy to share the information; the idea of keeping it separate is to avoid flooding the public areas with even more Chippenham, Melksham and Trowbridge minutiae!

Post added to thread at http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=20084.0 . Also includes other Wiltshire suggestions - Berks and Hants tunings.  Please ask me by p.m. if you are not a member of the TransWilts CRP board but would like to join.

Grahame, can you check if I am a member of the board and if not can you add me please.

Thank You.
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