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Author Topic: 2020 - lines (?) without major timetable changes  (Read 755 times)
grahame
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« on: May 30, 2019, 11:09:18 am »

Do you use any of ...

Par to Newquay
Truro to Falmouth
St Erth to St Ives
Oxford to Banbury
Reading to Gatwick
Cardiff to Swansea
Fareham to Brighton
Westbury to Weymouth
Reading to Basingstoke
Plymouth to Gunnislake
West Ealing to Greenford
Exeter St Davids to Exmouth
Twyford to Henley-on-Thames
Swindon to Westbury via Melksham
Maidenhead to Bourne End and Marlow
Worcester to Hereford via Great Malvern
Soutahmpton Central to Fareham via Eastleigh
Bristol to Gloucester, Cheltenham Spa and Worcester
Bristol Temple Meads to Avonmouth and Severn Beach

These are "white line" services not highlighted for any timetable changes come December.  Which does not always mean that there won't be any changes, as some/many/all will be adjusted to suit the needs of the coloured services on the following map with which they share stations.



Whilst we might have hoped that services on the white lines would be adjusted to ensure continued connections, that's certainly not always the case from data that I have seen; clearly something that's operationally sound is needed (and more trains on some coloured lines leaves less options for doing that), and then - seemingly second priority - is meeting the service level committement. Then there's what can be easily timetabled and that at times appears to come ahead of and drown out what the customers have been begging for.  And finally, if you're very lucky, connections with the retimed coloured expresses may work.

I do hope that GWR have listened and adjusted the 4 minute connection off the TransWilts onto the West of England train every 2 hours.  4 minutes means it won't be offered as a journey on the journey planners, and that passengers who take the risk will have a long and uncompensated wait at Westbury.  Good business for the buffet, but I expect the GWR will end up with some very very unhappy customers on days the TransWilts is delayed!

Not all bad news - there's a new 05:18 Westbury to Swindon (since the 05:17 Gloucester to Swindon is no longer there to feed the 06:07). But why not add an equal and opposite train at the end of the day in passenger service - say a train at 22:36 Swindon to Westbury rather than having an unbalanced service?

Suggestion ... many of the lines not being updated are community rail or ones with local user groups and now is an excellent time to help adding weight to any requests they have for small adjustment that would make a massive difference!

P.S. Interesting that the map shows Cardiff to Taunton services and Cardiff to Portsmouth services reversing at Bristol Parkway.  Planned, or misleading diagram??
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martyjon
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« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2019, 11:26:44 am »

Quote
P.S. Interesting that the map shows Cardiff to Taunton services and Cardiff to Portsmouth services reversing at Bristol Parkway.  Planned, or misleading diagram??

Most probably a misleading diagram, I question whether there is capacity to re-route the 2 services to Parkway with a reversal as platform 4 is very often occupied by the Parkway - Weston all stops unit reversing/waiting time.
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paul7755
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« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2019, 11:44:10 am »

The odd Portsmouth trains that run via Eastleigh for route knowledge purposes will still get the same overall strengthening that the dark green line indicates, surely...

Paul
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grahame
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« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2019, 11:52:39 am »

The odd Portsmouth trains that run via Eastleigh for route knowledge purposes will still get the same overall strengthening that the dark green line indicates, surely...

Paul

Unless there are plans to drop the 5 car trains to 3 cars late in the evening when that would be plenty of capacity - and perhaps help get the 2 car units serviced and save fuel dragging needless carriages around?   On present timings, there are calls at Southampton Airport only at 22:11 and 22:12!
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jamestheredengine
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« Reply #4 on: May 30, 2019, 11:52:57 am »

Cardiff to Swansea

Yes. Disappointing that it isn't going consistently half-hourly, rather than the current weird pattern of half-hourly in the morning peak, then hourly through the day and the evening peak to go back half-hourly after 1800. If they can do consistency for Cheltenham and Cornwall, they really should do it for the South Wales Main Line as well.

It's also disappointing that more trains aren't going to Carmarthen, as I'd much rather be in First Class for a journey of that length, especially when the competitor is TfW with its nastily short trains.

Quote
P.S. Interesting that the map shows Cardiff to Taunton services and Cardiff to Portsmouth services reversing at Bristol Parkway.  Planned, or misleading diagram??

Perhaps they should have put Filton Abbey Wood on the map instead of Bristol Parkway, although that would make it look like South Wales was getting the same treatment as the West Country, with stations like Bristol Parkway moved to a new semi-fast service -- again, part of the disappointing disparity in treatment that South Wales is getting.
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grahame
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« Reply #5 on: May 30, 2019, 11:59:18 am »

Cardiff to Swansea

Yes. Disappointing that it isn't going consistently half-hourly, rather than the current weird pattern of half-hourly in the morning peak, then hourly through the day and the evening peak to go back half-hourly after 1800. If they can do consistency for Cheltenham and Cornwall, they really should do it for the South Wales Main Line as well.

Good example of operational convenience, combined with Londoncentric planning - getting trains to and from the depot at Maliphant, and having half hourly trains to Swansea from London in the London peak, rather than from Cardiff in the Cardiff peak.
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eightonedee
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« Reply #6 on: May 30, 2019, 10:19:51 pm »

It's not clear what this means for the Goring - Reading part of my commute - the Reading to Oxford (oh sorry we did not complete the electrification so shall we call that Didcot?) local stopping service.

Is there any indication of what is happening here?

It certainly is not good enough if there are no adjustments to the "white" line services to ensure that connections match with revised services, although from what I have read here lately there's already some large gaps already.
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Surrey 455
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« Reply #7 on: May 30, 2019, 10:47:38 pm »

Do you use any of ...

Par to Newquay
Truro to Falmouth
St Erth to St Ives
Oxford to Banbury
Reading to Gatwick
Cardiff to Swansea
Fareham to Brighton
Westbury to Weymouth
Reading to Basingstoke
Plymouth to Gunnislake
West Ealing to Greenford
Exeter St Davids to Exmouth
Twyford to Henley-on-Thames
Swindon to Westbury via Melksham
Maidenhead to Bourne End and Marlow
Worcester to Hereford via Great Malvern
Soutahmpton Central to Fareham via Eastleigh
Bristol to Gloucester, Cheltenham Spa and Worcester
Bristol Temple Meads to Avonmouth and Severn Beach

I am impressed with that curve. The formatting is surely deliberate isn't it?
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grahame
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« Reply #8 on: May 31, 2019, 04:48:36 am »

I am impressed with that curve. The formatting is surely deliberate isn't
Yes - deliberate formatting.  Avoids showing any bias towards any area or lines!
« Last Edit: May 31, 2019, 06:55:48 pm by Red Squirrel » Logged

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ray951
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« Reply #9 on: May 31, 2019, 06:20:20 pm »

It's not clear what this means for the Goring - Reading part of my commute - the Reading to Oxford (oh sorry we did not complete the electrification so shall we call that Didcot?) local stopping service.

Is there any indication of what is happening here?

It certainly is not good enough if there are no adjustments to the "white" line services to ensure that connections match with revised services, although from what I have read here lately there's already some large gaps already.
I believe that there are no changes, see timetable changes thread, to the stopping services from Reading -Didcot - Oxford - Banbury I was hoping that the timetable changes would see improvements to this service especially since this service has been downgraded since electrification was postponed/cancelled. Most services on this route are formed of 2 carriage trains when previously they were almost always 3 carriage. Does anybody know whether GWR have any plans to rectify this situation?
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grahame
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« Reply #10 on: July 19, 2019, 06:55:43 am »

From This is the West Country

Quote
South west train services will be transformed from December, when Great Western Railway will introduce faster journey times and more frequent services to key locations.

Train services between Devon and Cornwall and London will be restructured to deliver a more consistent pattern throughout the day, offering faster journey times and more frequent services to key locations from December this year.

It is the biggest timetable change on the network since 1976, with GWR’s Intercity Express Trains (IETs) taking advantage of recent infrastructure improvements.

Richard Burningham, from the Devon and Cornwall Rail Partnership said: “This is great news for the local and regional economies of Devon and Cornwall, for the environment, and for rail customers.

"More seats, more trains and faster journeys will help with inward investment, with the switch from cars to public transport and will be a great support for visitors and commuters alike.

“It is not just the journey time savings in long distance journeys to London, it is also about the significant improvement to many local trains across the two counties.

"It is no exaggeration to say that Devon and Cornwall local services will be the best they have ever been and it is great to see that we will now see the full benefit of the investment in both track and train by Christmas.”

Three more services a day will run between Paddington and the south west, running non-stop between Reading and Taunton. Customers will see journey times reduce by up to 14 minutes on journeys between Penzance and the capital.

A two-hourly semi-fast service between Paddington and Exeter St Davids will call at Reading, Newbury, Pewsey, Westbury, Castle Cary, Taunton and Tiverton Parkway.

GWR managing director Mark Hopwood said: “While December may seem a long time away for many, we have been working hard behind the scenes to prepare to implement the biggest timetable change on this network since 1976, enabling us to take advantage of the full benefits that new Intercity Express Trains are bringing.

“In providing more frequent and quicker journeys our new timetable will for the vast majority of users quite literally mean ‘all change please’ and we are looking forward to publishing further details soon.”

Really good "news" (though not new to us on the forum) - delighted for that vast majority of users

There will be some cases - even on lines which are overall improved where some users will find the new services less convenient, or where full improvement opportunities haven't been taken advantage of. On at least one of the  "white line" services there will be changes necessitated by the operational interfaces to the new timetable which damage more people's current daily journeys than they improve.

There has been good requests for input and sharing of new weekday timetables with those of us who are likely to give provide constructive criticism as they are tuned - we're really grateful for that opportunity and will be hearing the final outcome next month. In places, a change of as little as one minute will allow a connection to be forged that will make a real difference.  There are, though, parts of the network where GWR are now looking to / required to get a quart in a pint pot and all aspirations cannot be met operationally without further infrastructure improvements - yes, a lot has been spent, a lot done, but the net effect is fuller tracks.  There are also places where aspirations aren't met due, we are told, to cost.

It's a time to celebrate the huge improvements, to take a deep breath and look to both "fine tuning" once the service is in operation (it may be that some timing prove to be cautious) and to look forward to updates which can be achieved and are already being talked about beyond the end of this year.
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