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Author Topic: Cotswold Line - new December timetable  (Read 7890 times)
Richard Fairhurst
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« on: August 06, 2019, 03:14:29 pm »

Just Back from a fortnight in France (sad to miss the Meet the MD event!). I was interested to see the new Cotswold Line times from December on RealTimeTrains.

I've posted a summary of changes over on the Charlbury website, but to summarise the summary: morning peak pretty much unchanged, clockface-ish service hourly through the day, lots of changes in the evening peak. I've resisted editorialising over there, but a couple of thoughts here...:

  • IET speed-ups are very welcome. 1hr03 London-Charlbury matches the historic best, even with a stop at Hanborough included. (I suspect this will have a greater chance of keeping to time than the HST Cathedrals Express ever managed!)
  • Reading stops have been massacred in the evening peak: down from four trains to one. Cotswold-London commuters will love this. Cotswold-Reading ones won't, and there's a lot of the latter. I've not looked into how the connections work but this could be a flashpoint.
  • The retiming of the Oxfordshire Halts train in the morning will definitely be a flashpoint. From December, it arrives at 08.25, which is cutting it fine for people who start work in Oxford at 08.30. (Currently it arrives at 08.10.)
  • Moving the 18.22 from Paddington to 18.58 is an interesting one. The Cathedrals Express has left Paddington at 18.22ish for at least 20 years and possibly longer. It does presumably have the upside that it'll now qualify for Off-Peak tickets, though sadly not Super Off-Peak (by three minutes).
  • New 22.50 from Paddington is very welcome - an hour later than the current last train. Shame, though not surprising, that it doesn't run on Saturdays.
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philipbourton
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« Reply #1 on: August 07, 2019, 10:09:49 am »

Thanks for posting this - and the link to the CHarlbury website; very interesting indeed from the point of view of a Kingham - Paddington commuter - as see the current 623 will leave at 616 - and get into Paddington at 734 instaed of 752; a major improvement.  Plus the current non-stopping at Kingham at just gone 7 will stop. 

Don't know what to think about the 1822 going though - as that works out nicely finishing work at 17.30 - but obviously main change is even to Kingham it;s going to be 1hr 9 minutes instead of the current 1hr 1/2. 

The non-stopping at Reading is interesting though as presume it means that the guards will have to announce before the trains leave that it's the Cotswold train - as currently people cna still get off at Reading if the wrong train - but the number  of times they announced the destination once the train has left.

Interesting times ahead - even if it does mean less reading time on the train (no pun intended),
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Adelante_CCT
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« Reply #2 on: August 07, 2019, 08:54:15 pm »

Quote
Reading stops have been massacred in the evening peak: down from four trains to one. Cotswold-London commuters will love this. Cotswold-Reading ones won't, and there's a lot of the latter. I've not looked into how the connections work but this could be a flashpoint.

In terms of connections, not too bad, the non-stoppers pass through Reading at xx:19, meaning all being well, pax can catch a XC at xx:15 with just a few minutes change at Oxford.
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DavidT
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« Reply #3 on: August 12, 2019, 02:13:52 pm »

While the retimed morning Halts service might indeed cause some problems for people using it to work in Oxford, it does mean there are improved connections for people going on to London.  It now arrives at Didcot at 8.41, in time for the next fast London service  at 8.46, arriving at Paddington at 9.30. Or, if that seems a bit tight, getting off at Oxford would mean plenty of time to catch the 8.44, arriving at Paddington at 9.37.
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Robin Summerhill
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« Reply #4 on: August 12, 2019, 02:57:46 pm »

Quote from: DavidT
While the retimed morning Halts service might indeed cause some problems for people using it to work in Oxford, it does mean there are improved connections for people going on to London.  It now arrives at Didcot at 8.41, in time for the next fast London service  at 8.46, arriving at Paddington at 9.30. Or, if that seems a bit tight, getting off at Oxford would mean plenty of time to catch the 8.44, arriving at Paddington at 9.37.

Hmmm - the "halts service"

This has always intrigued me for the simple reason that I have grandchildren living within 4 minutes walk of Ascott under Wychwood station, yet there is no way that I can visit them by train without being picked up from Charlbury or staying overnight.

Why, I wonder, do places like Thornford Bridge, Yetminster, Chetnole, Yeoford, Copplestone, Morchard Road, Kings Nympton, Umberleigh, Luxulyan, Bugle, Roche and St Columb Road all warrant a usable service, but the likes of Shipton under Wychwood, Ascott and Combe don't?

On another thread somebody said today that they would use the trains more if the lines and stations they wanted to use were still there. In the case of the North Cotswold line the line and stations are still there, but the bloody service isn't...  Roll Eyes
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Steve Bray
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« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2019, 10:00:42 pm »

In the opening post, Richard mentioned a couple of points; the 1 hr 3 min schedule from PAD to Charlbury matching a historic best; and the departure of the Cathedrals Express from PAD at around 18:22 being unchanged for 20 years or so.

These comments made me dig out some past timetables....

Concerning the PAD to Charlbury fastest schedule, this might not be the case. In the Spring 1998 CLPG newsletter (Issue 69), the proposed Summer 98 timetable was printed (subject to confirmation) and this showed the 1827 from Paddington, due into Charlbury at 1926, having stopped only at Oxford. This 1827 was scheduled to arrive Shrub Hill at 2016, Gt Malvern at 2031 and Hereford at 2110, although it probably had to wait for 10 minutes or so at Ledbury, where it was scheduled to arrive at 2043.

Concerning the regular departure of the Cathedral Express from Paddington, the Summer 2004 schedules showed the Peak Hereford trains departing PAD at 1712 and 1827 but changing to 1722 and 1822 in Summer 2005. The Winter 96 timetable showed peak departures at 1710 and 1820.
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Worcester_Passenger
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« Reply #6 on: August 27, 2019, 02:25:24 pm »

1993 Summer timings, Mondays-to-Fridays:

Up trains
                                Turbo  HST     HST     Turbo
Hereford                              05:56  06:55
Worcester Shrub Hill   05:53  06:49  07:49  08:50
London Paddington     08:09  08:50  09:40  11:20

Down trains
                                Turbo   HST     HST     Turbo
London Paddington     15:20  17:10  18:20  19:20
Worcester Shrub Hill   17:36  19:09  20:13  21:37
Hereford                               20:02  21:00

Ah, the halcyon days when London-Worcester was a mere 1:53. Nowadays 2:20 is the norm.
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IndustryInsider
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« Reply #7 on: August 27, 2019, 02:48:33 pm »

Nowadays 2:20 is the norm.

Until December!
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To view my GWML Electrification cab video 'before and after' video comparison, as well as other videos of the new layout at Reading and 'before and after' comparisons of the Cotswold Line Redoubling scheme, see: http://www.dailymotion.com/user/IndustryInsider/
Charlie (in Gloucester)
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« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2019, 12:29:53 pm »

This is the 18:50 on a Saturday evening post December, scheduled a 12 minute hold at Worcestershire Parkway..
https://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/L97618/2019/12/21
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We should be aiming towards a country where no matter where you are you can get around all day with an easy to use, affordable and modern transport system.
IndustryInsider
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« Reply #9 on: August 28, 2019, 12:47:19 pm »

To allow this train to pass through ahead of it at Norton Junction:

https://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/C74337/2019/12/21/advanced

In future timetables, the odd unfortunate clash like that will hopefully get resolved, as it's not surprising that this new jigsaw has a few pieces that don't quite fit.  I dream of the day the ridiculously inflexible layout and signalling at Worcester is ripped out and a proper modern layout installed.
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To view my GWML Electrification cab video 'before and after' video comparison, as well as other videos of the new layout at Reading and 'before and after' comparisons of the Cotswold Line Redoubling scheme, see: http://www.dailymotion.com/user/IndustryInsider/
Charlie (in Gloucester)
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« Reply #10 on: August 28, 2019, 12:50:23 pm »

To allow this train to pass through ahead of it at Norton Junction:

https://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/C74337/2019/12/21/advanced

In future timetables, the odd unfortunate clash like that will hopefully get resolved, as it's not surprising that this new jigsaw has a few pieces that don't quite fit.  I dream of the day the ridiculously inflexible layout and signalling at Worcester is ripped out and a proper modern layout installed.

Thanks for clarifying that. I have spent a lot of time looking at the times between Cheltenham and Worcester and Paddington. A few are beating their promised times which is good.
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We should be aiming towards a country where no matter where you are you can get around all day with an easy to use, affordable and modern transport system.
martyjon
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« Reply #11 on: August 28, 2019, 04:29:48 pm »

Quote
To allow this train to pass through ahead of it at Norton Junction:

https://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/C74337/2019/12/21/advanced

I suspect the specified train is one of those pathed "for retention of route knowledge" as, without looking, most XC Bristol - Birmingham services operate Abbotswood Junction - Bromsgrove direct.
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Worcester_Passenger
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« Reply #12 on: August 28, 2019, 05:37:25 pm »

Good to know that route knowledge for CrossCountry drivers is more important than London - Worcester / Malvern / Hereford passengers.
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IndustryInsider
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« Reply #13 on: August 28, 2019, 05:45:40 pm »

A cynic would (quite wrongly) suggest itís all part of the plan to make Worcestershire Parkway station a success!  Wink
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To view my GWML Electrification cab video 'before and after' video comparison, as well as other videos of the new layout at Reading and 'before and after' comparisons of the Cotswold Line Redoubling scheme, see: http://www.dailymotion.com/user/IndustryInsider/
JontyMort
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« Reply #14 on: August 29, 2019, 06:04:26 pm »

Good to know that route knowledge for CrossCountry drivers is more important than London - Worcester / Malvern / Hereford passengers.

And, of course, turning the knife in the wound, these XCs through Shrub Hill without stopping. In particular, there's an early morning Cardiff run (0500 New Street, 0603 Cheltenham) that could and should provide a decent early Worcester-Cardiff opportunity.
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