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  • TWSW Webinar: January 15, 2021
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Author Topic: 15th January, 15:30, TravelWatch SouthWest webinar  (Read 549 times)
grahame
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« on: January 06, 2021, 01:38:07 pm »

A date for your diary - that's Friday of next week.  First in a series over a number of weeks - topics, links, etc, to follow.
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« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2021, 07:12:45 pm »

Date And Time - Fri, 15 Jan 2021, 15:30 GMT
Free, but booking needed, via
https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/twsw-fireside-series-2-webinar-16-the-big-issue-for-us-is-tickets-135982448163

Quote
TWSW Fireside Series 2 Webinar 1/6

The big issue for us is???.

Following the popular series of Lockdown 1, we are running a second ?Fireside? series of webinars to update and inform on the key issues and policies which will drive the South West?s future ability to connect by public transport.

The usual opportunities for engage with decision makers exist minimally during lockdown and it can be hard to be heard amid the stream reactive processes. Big transport network changing decisions are still being made and it is important to make sure that the user is represented.

Webinar 1 TWSW member groups have the floor and are encouraged to bring on board non-member groups to raise awareness of issues which are/will have consequences for their communities.

Let us know if you have something to say about the public transport network whether, worry, opportunity, frustration, high praise or disappointment.
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« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2021, 04:33:14 pm »

Follow up to today's TWSW seminar will be linked here ... first thing tomorrow morning!
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« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2021, 04:58:49 pm »

A date for your diary - that's Friday of next week.  First in a series over a number of weeks - topics, links, etc, to follow.

Webinar 2 3.30 pm - Friday 22 January 2021 - Decarbonisation
Webinar 3 3.30 pm - Friday 29 January - Town Centres
Webinar 4 3.30 pm - Friday 5th February - Rural Connectivity
Webinar 5 3.30 pm - Friday 12th February - Best Practice
Webinar 6 3.30 pm - Friday 19th February - t.b.a.

I will add separate diary links for each
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« Reply #4 on: January 16, 2021, 11:11:50 am »

Follow up to today's TWSW seminar will be linked here ... first thing tomorrow morning!


Chair Chris Irwin talked of us needing to work towards the new normal,  and to get things back better.  He spoke of the rest of this year still being abnormal, and of the coronavirus pandemic and changes accelerating changes that might have been underway anyway. Some changes, originally expected to be temporary, will be crystalised into being permanent.

Good to then hear updates at the TravelWatch SouthWest Zoom meeting yesterday afternoon on the Devizes Gateway and Salisbury to Exeter line proposals, and hear for the first time from one of the protagonists on the proposals for a railway to serve Bridport.

Devizes Gateway is a proposal for a station on the "Berks and Hants" line about 3 miles from the town centre, in the middle of a gap of just over 20 miles. Devizes is the largest town (and its growing) without rail connection in Wiltshire, and is at the heart of a large area of countryside with no alternative stations. As well as outgoing passenger traffic, there are inbound opportunities for visitors - it's midway between Stonehenge and Avebury, in lovely countryside, the Kennet and Avon Canal passes through, and Devizes itself - where a renowned museum is moving to the old assize court buildings (proposed/probable) and the town itself is a major attraction.

The Wilts and Berks line is the main line to the West of England. It lost its local services in the 1960s, with the only remaining passenger services being West of England expresses.  High Speed Trains (HSTs, 125s) ran the services for many years - excellent long distance trains, but impractical to stop routinely at extra intermediate stations on a frequent basis in addition within their long distance roles. Come the replacement of HSTs by IETs, and with the progressive introduction of additional semi-fast services (now up to every 2 hours in the normal timetable) an additional call is now operationally practical.

The scheme for a new station at Lydeway, on the A342 out of the town towards the east, utilises a flat open site near where the old branch line from Devizes joined the main line.  It has considerable local support, and is one of the schemes supported by the Department for Transport "Reversing Beeching" seed funding for investigation and development work, even though there wasn't actually a station at Lydeway in the past.  There's an excellent business case, and operational practicality using and developing current services, with further improvement if the calling service is lifted to hourly.  West of Newbury, there are currently five passenger trains every 2 hours - two are expresses, two terminate at Bedwyn, and one skips over Bedwyn to form semi-fasts through Lydeway.

The line from Salisbury to Exeter was the competing main line from London (Waterloo) to Exeter and beyond, but services were reduced and the line was singled with limited passing loops in the 1960s, and since that time various changes have limited the ability to easily redouble throughout.  Passenger numbers at intermediate stations have rocketed, and whilst the line can just about cope with an hourly train each way, reliability is awful as even the odd extra service gets added - which is increasingly needed, especially towards Exeter.

A half hourly ("Devon Metro") service is needed from Axminster westward, and the line is also used for diverted long distance (GWR) services when the line from Exeter to east of Taunton (Cogload Junction) is closed at some point. SERUG is working with local government and rail industry partners to encourage additional capacity through the provision of additional passing loops west or Yeovil Junction.

Significant Webinar participant comment was made on the degradation over time and recent withdrawal of catering services on Exeter - Salisbury - London (Waterloo) services.

Bridport lost its rail service in 1970 - a branch line from Maiden Newton on the Heart of Wessex line (Weymouth - Dorchester - Yeovil - Frome - Westbury) to the main town station, which had extended in the past to West Bay, originally known as "Bridport Harbour".  Since closure, Bridport has expanded dramatically, with further expansion expected, and can become gridlocked with tourists in summer.

The Jurassic Coast Railway is a proposal for a narrow gauge (2'6") line from West Bay, via a park and ride at Broomhill where the line's depot and HQ will be, Skilling, Bridport Town Centre, Court Orchard and Pyemore, rejoining the route of the old Bridport branch just before Lodors before following it through Powerstock and Toller to Maiden Newton.  The proposal is for a community railway, locally looked after and run, using battery or hydrogen powered trains, and running all year.

The proposals are at early stages, and are so innovative in many aspects that there is a need to bring people on board and in support, but a very great deal of thought has been given to many of the key questions that are being asked.  Models such as the Welsh Highland Line, which was rebuilt generations after the original railway was scrubbed out and runs across / along the main road in Porthmadog are quoted as something of a parallel, and with a trackbed that originally carried a broad gauge railway, diagrams show that there is room for the railway line to share with a cycle and foot path.

The TWSW session has very useful and content-heavy and over coming weeks there will be far more opportunity to interact and provide other updates - I guess that was bound to be due to the gap from previous sessions.  Each of the projects above has its own forum thread and I suggest we follow up there.

Bridport - http://www.passenger.chat/24522

Devizes Gateway - http://www.passenger.chat/19298

SERUG - http://www.passenger.chat/21286


« Last Edit: January 16, 2021, 12:29:29 pm by grahame » Logged

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« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2021, 11:34:28 am »

Public chat notes / views /links.

On Catering on "The Mule" and wider on SWR see http://www.passenger.chat/24340

it's a pity the Department for Transport are removing the catering services from all south western railway main line trains this weekend  including Exeter st David Exeter cental yeovil junction Salisbury London Waterloo. and Weymouth Bournemouth Southampton central London Waterloo.

if you want  leasure travel from Devon and Dorset you need catering  .
The catering removal is permanent

but its over priced. it puts people off. I don't want to spend ?3.50 on a coffee... I'd rather take my own.

the RMT staff are redundant

other catering services may follow

Department for transport said on catering being removed a full.passenger consultation tock.place but no group got consultation emails

Lots of comments on loss of catering on Salisbury to Exeter Line. It is now high on our lobbying agenda. The caterers contract has been cancelled but we are not sure if its Covid related and whether there are plans to re-instate post Covid. No catering is not acceptable.

Nick, Fine about the catering as people loose jobs. But needs to be affordable. SWR probably are saving money hence why it was cancelled. GWR removed all Catering on routes, with only limited on London as It was a trail period.

The department for transport are removing catering its never made money it's used to get leasure and Business travellers to use long distance trains
but is not in emergency contracts

----------

Wider comment on SERUG

does serug propose the development of chard parkway at the existing dairy loop?

Redoubling Salisbury to Exeter would probably cost a lot less than A303 upgrade (including Stonehenge horror!)

How much of the improvement in punctuality is due to less trains and how much to less passengers (reduced station dwell times)?

Train performance not only is affected by line capacity, but - in the case of a single line with passing points - the resilience of the signalling/ points and proper train regulating policy; the latter hasn't performed properly since signalling was centralised in Basingstoke.

I did the GWR diversion from Exeter via Castle Cary, The timings for the trains were scheduled in around it. There was no delay. SWR had priority over the line.

The ultimate ambition.  should be to restore double track throughout as has happened with the other lines singled in the 1960's by BR Western Region

The Cotswold Line had the same issues but reinstating more double track has pretty much solved timekeeping and enabled a more frequent service.

Chard Junction / Parkway - doesn't figure in our plans currently. We've met with South Somerset Council and have left the ball with them - if they can support a business case, it could be considered, but needs to be driven and examined by the council
----------------

On Bridport

http://www.bridportrenewal.org.uk/
http://www.bridportrenewal.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/Bridport-Renewal-Vision-07-01-2020.pdf

support reopening the maiden Newton to Bridport branch
we need good public transport to Bridport and Improvements in the bus links to Axminster railway station Dorchester and Weymouth

I agree David, Let's spend money on improving existing things before creating new things.

Need to open up the conversation about interlinking services to the wider region

Park and Ride is a brilliant idea. we are put off travelling to West Bay because of parking problems

From the point of view of people visiting area from Devon, idea of a P&R on A35 is welcome. Would it have overnight parking option? - eg so people could leave car while taking a walking / cycling break on the line?

You might want to talk to Christopher Maltin who is developing ultra light rail using bio methane http://biomethane.co.uk/christopher-maltin/

Presume plan for P&Rs will also include them being electric car charging hubs?

But First Group won't improve the service as they are a commercial business and only interested in money. That route doesn't make any... therefore no service.

Any suggestions for contact to talk about the wider services would be helpful - please feel free to send suggestions to sayhello@bridportrenewal.org.uk

is an of the Bridport Branch owned by Highway England

More Money = More Service for Bus Services. Council needs to spend.

Lots of different owners

department for transport is funding all bus services  in England at 27 .5 million pounds a week including Dorset bus service not on rural buses

Yes David but if the funding stops then so will the services. X51 and X53 is a good route but finishes early and not frequent enough

--------------

And Also see also http://www.passenger.chat/24469

we need  to stop the highway England destroying track beds and tunnel s

need to stop Highway England full stop
« Last Edit: January 16, 2021, 11:52:23 am by grahame » Logged

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« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2021, 11:53:55 am »

I am locking this topic to encourage members to follow up on the relevant threads, all of which are quoted in the text.  That will help keep all the conversations on each project together in a correlated manner!
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