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Author Topic: Okehampton-Tavistock. Discussion on reopening and potential use as a diversionary route  (Read 193933 times)
Robin Summerhill
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« Reply #555 on: January 25, 2020, 06:27:14 pm »

...OkeRail aspirations of in running as part of the national network, and concerns that selling it as a working heritage railway to a heritage rail / tourism business organisation might get in the way of its wider use.

Not a problem in itself. If needed, Transport & Works Orders allow for compulsory purchase.
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mjones
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« Reply #556 on: January 25, 2020, 08:43:17 pm »

However,  considering the absurdly high costs now  being discussed just to get to Tavistock, I can't see much prospect of those compulsory purchase powers being needed in the foreseeable future, sadly.
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« Reply #557 on: January 25, 2020, 09:08:38 pm »


The escalating and now astronomical costs of about 90m for laying a single line from Bere Alston to Tavistock, most recently quoted by NR; no doubt including their 66% allowance for 'contingency purposes ', hopefully will now be reviewed by Devon County Council's Scrutiny Committee.
Who knows, someone else might well be able to do it much cheaper.
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grahame
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« Reply #558 on: January 26, 2020, 06:27:07 am »

...OkeRail aspirations of in running as part of the national network, and concerns that selling it as a working heritage railway to a heritage rail / tourism business organisation might get in the way of its wider use.
Not a problem in itself. If needed, Transport & Works Orders allow for compulsory purchase.

However,  considering the absurdly high costs now  being discussed just to get to Tavistock, I can't see much prospect of those compulsory purchase powers being needed in the foreseeable future, sadly.

The escalating and now astronomical costs of about 90m for laying a single line from Bere Alston to Tavistock, most recently quoted by NR; no doubt including their 66% allowance for 'contingency purposes ', hopefully will now be reviewed by Devon County Council's Scrutiny Committee.
Who knows, someone else might well be able to do it much cheaper.

With both an officially supported re-opening of main network services to Okehampton and an officially rejected strategy of providing a second route to Plymouth via Okehampton and Tavistock, it would be very wise for any prospective purchaser to do a "due diligence" study - a "what if" exercise to plan their business to work with (and generate a profit or at least an income) from their asset.   And it would be very wise for them to work with the various interests to allow assets to transfer in an orderly and forward-looking way.

Whilst compulsory purchase orders would be available at some unplanned (though not unforeseen by some) future date, what's the point at letting it get to that?  As I understand it, that would be a needless extra step in a whole potential process.

From my armchair (which is not even in the county!), I would personally like to see a future with metro trains up to Okehampton from Exeter, and from Plymouth up to Tavistock, with a connecting single track between the two. Nothing that needs heavy engineering for fast running, but a suitable route for an hourly diverted long distance express (NOT running as an "express") should the other route via Newton Abbott be unavailable.  I'm noticing yesterday than a skeleton London to Plymouth and Cornwall trains was running via Castle Cary rather than via Taunton, at short notice due to a fire just off the railway.  Sensible if there's a problem to the north of Exeter, with no equivalent option if there's something to the south thereof.   Back of fag packet in my armchair - 16 miles Okehampton to Tavistock, so 45 mph railway, single track all the way between the two, hourly emergency time service between them.  In normal times, hourly Okehampton to Exeter, hourly Tavistock to Plymouth, services join up like links in a chain with an hourly through service with a single additional train.  Appreciate that the mid section wouldn't be the busiest - especially in winter - but I suspect the overall economics would look a darned sight better than certain lines / services I could pick on in the British Isles away from Southern England where perhaps the political climate differs.

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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #559 on: January 26, 2020, 08:24:58 am »

...OkeRail aspirations of in running as part of the national network, and concerns that selling it as a working heritage railway to a heritage rail / tourism business organisation might get in the way of its wider use.
Not a problem in itself. If needed, Transport & Works Orders allow for compulsory purchase.

However,  considering the absurdly high costs now  being discussed just to get to Tavistock, I can't see much prospect of those compulsory purchase powers being needed in the foreseeable future, sadly.

The escalating and now astronomical costs of about 90m for laying a single line from Bere Alston to Tavistock, most recently quoted by NR; no doubt including their 66% allowance for 'contingency purposes ', hopefully will now be reviewed by Devon County Council's Scrutiny Committee.
Who knows, someone else might well be able to do it much cheaper.

With both an officially supported re-opening of main network services to Okehampton and an officially rejected strategy of providing a second route to Plymouth via Okehampton and Tavistock, it would be very wise for any prospective purchaser to do a "due diligence" study - a "what if" exercise to plan their business to work with (and generate a profit or at least an income) from their asset.   And it would be very wise for them to work with the various interests to allow assets to transfer in an orderly and forward-looking way.

Whilst compulsory purchase orders would be available at some unplanned (though not unforeseen by some) future date, what's the point at letting it get to that?  As I understand it, that would be a needless extra step in a whole potential process.

From my armchair (which is not even in the county!), I would personally like to see a future with metro trains up to Okehampton from Exeter, and from Plymouth up to Tavistock, with a connecting single track between the two. Nothing that needs heavy engineering for fast running, but a suitable route for an hourly diverted long distance express (NOT running as an "express") should the other route via Newton Abbott be unavailable.  I'm noticing yesterday than a skeleton London to Plymouth and Cornwall trains was running via Castle Cary rather than via Taunton, at short notice due to a fire just off the railway.  Sensible if there's a problem to the north of Exeter, with no equivalent option if there's something to the south thereof.   Back of fag packet in my armchair - 16 miles Okehampton to Tavistock, so 45 mph railway, single track all the way between the two, hourly emergency time service between them.  In normal times, hourly Okehampton to Exeter, hourly Tavistock to Plymouth, services join up like links in a chain with an hourly through service with a single additional train.  Appreciate that the mid section wouldn't be the busiest - especially in winter - but I suspect the overall economics would look a darned sight better than certain lines / services I could pick on in the British Isles away from Southern England where perhaps the political climate differs.



If we accept that well over 100,000,000,000 is to be spent on HS2, it's perhaps hard to see much money being made available elsewhere for infrastructure work such as this - indeed it'll probably be used as an excuse not to.

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ellendune
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« Reply #560 on: January 26, 2020, 08:32:46 am »

If we accept that well over 100,000,000,000 is to be spent on HS2, it's perhaps hard to see much money being made available elsewhere for infrastructure work such as this - indeed it'll probably be used as an excuse not to.

They spent equivalent amounts of money building the M1 and M6 to relieve the 'classic' rad routes to the north. That did not stop them building the M4 and the M5 to the west at the same time did it.
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #561 on: January 26, 2020, 09:42:44 am »

If we accept that well over 100,000,000,000 is to be spent on HS2, it's perhaps hard to see much money being made available elsewhere for infrastructure work such as this - indeed it'll probably be used as an excuse not to.

They spent equivalent amounts of money building the M1 and M6 to relieve the 'classic' rad routes to the north. That did not stop them building the M4 and the M5 to the west at the same time did it.

There is an argument for extending the M5 South to Plymouth given the problems the railway has coping with the sea at Dawlish and the problems the A38 has coping with the traffic particularly during the holiday season but increasingly for much of the year.

I'm sure a case can be made for both - persuading the Government to stump up the cash however may be a tougher challenge.
« Last Edit: January 26, 2020, 09:50:58 am by TaplowGreen » Logged
Red Squirrel
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« Reply #562 on: January 26, 2020, 10:53:57 am »


There is an argument for extending the M5 South to Plymouth...


There is. There's also an argument that there is no such thing as anthropogenic climate change. But if we believe that there is a climate emergency, then it would be beyond absurd to seriously consider building new motorway.
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Robin Summerhill
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« Reply #563 on: January 26, 2020, 04:55:30 pm »

However,  considering the absurdly high costs now  being discussed just to get to Tavistock, I can't see much prospect of those compulsory purchase powers being needed in the foreseeable future, sadly.

I agree, but I was dealing with that one particular issue.

In fact, I'd go a little further and say that this line won't be reopened this side of the election of a majority Monster Raving Looney Party government.

Oh - wait... Wink
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TonyK
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« Reply #564 on: January 26, 2020, 05:15:17 pm »


There is an argument for extending the M5 South to Plymouth...


There is. There's also an argument that there is no such thing as anthropogenic climate change. But if we believe that there is a climate emergency, then it would be beyond absurd to seriously consider building new motorway.

There is a very easy way to satisfy both sides. Build this as the country's first "electric only" motorway. That should ramp up sales of electric cars, which don't need fossil fuels but still need roads, show investment outside London, and tick dozens of boxes.
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #565 on: January 26, 2020, 05:30:14 pm »


There is an argument for extending the M5 South to Plymouth...


There is. There's also an argument that there is no such thing as anthropogenic climate change. But if we believe that there is a climate emergency, then it would be beyond absurd to seriously consider building new motorway.

There is a very easy way to satisfy both sides. Build this as the country's first "electric only" motorway. That should ramp up sales of electric cars, which don't need fossil fuels but still need roads, show investment outside London, and tick dozens of boxes.

It could be called Electric Avenue.
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RailCornwall
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« Reply #566 on: January 26, 2020, 07:08:00 pm »


There is an argument for extending the M5 South to Plymouth...


There is. There's also an argument that there is no such thing as anthropogenic climate change. But if we believe that there is a climate emergency, then it would be beyond absurd to seriously consider building new motorway.

I'd love to see a route for the M5 to Plymouth, and the resultant Compulsory Purchase bill, remember the existing A38 would need to remain for local traffic in some form. So a 45 mile highway across some of the country's most expensive real estate would be 'fun'. There's an interesting conundrum in Cornwall on the A30 where plans are in hand to dual 'the last bit' between Chiverton and Carland. There's already discussion to extend from Treswithian to Hayle.
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« Reply #567 on: January 26, 2020, 07:35:08 pm »

Since the A 30 has been dualled through Devon and half way through Cornwall, there is not a great deal of holiday traffic that takes the A38 via Plymouth ( apart from Looe and Fowey traffic). I suspect a case for the M5 based on meeting holiday traffic needs would not be strong. As to having a resillient A 38 to meet Dawlish storm events, winter usage of the A 38 is not that high, and in such cases the rail replacement to Cornwall tends to go via Tiverton Parkway to A 30 to Bodmin.
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bradshaw
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« Reply #568 on: February 06, 2020, 10:44:41 am »

New group to look at case for reopening the Northern Route

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I'm very pleased to announce the formation of an ad hoc group looking at the case for reopening the #NorthernRoute. It's a team of highly respected rail industry experts examining the capability the railway would need to provide a local service and sufficient freight and diversionary capacity, as well as the potential for extending the #GraniteWay from Lydford to Tavistock, which could generate significant benefits too. We're keen to hear from organisations and individuals with a view on the reopening for or against and particularly those affected by the #Dawlish closure in 2014. At this early stage there are no preconceptions on the case and how the railway would operate, but if there is a case we're looking to develop a detailed and costed proposal for further discussion. If you do have a view, please get in touch with me either here or via the website - andrewroden.com - we strongly believe there could be a very positive case, but it is vital that if there is it is credible costed and developed in a way which maximises the benefits and treats individuals and organisations affected with the utmost decency and courtesy. The South West cannot depend on a single rail link, needs more transport investment, and #NorthernRoute could be critical in helping to generate economic, social and environmental benefits in a region too often overlooked by central government.   
Further discussion on Twitter
https://twitter.com/andyroden1/status/1225344332498165760?s=21
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Thatcham Crossing
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« Reply #569 on: February 06, 2020, 12:37:30 pm »

Quote
It could be called Electric Avenue

...or perhaps the Electric Expressway, so that it keeps at least some of it's current naming.
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