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Author Topic: Dorset Connectivity Study - Network Rail December 2021  (Read 1284 times)
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« on: January 15, 2022, 02:13:39 pm »

This paper looks at the future of transport connectivity in Dorset. Much on Heart of Wessex but also some on the West of England route. Well worth reading.

Edit to add another link - Gloucester to Weymouth
« Last Edit: January 15, 2022, 02:21:42 pm by bradshaw » Logged
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« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2022, 03:45:47 pm »

This paper looks at the future of transport connectivity in Dorset. Much on Heart of Wessex but also some on the West of England route. Well worth reading.

Indeed - and I have added the text to our "deep search" so that the document will be easily findable in the future.

I note on page 66:

The existing Bristol Temple Meads to Weymouth services operate only every two hours, with some intervals being as much as three hours between services, whereas all other corridors in the South West operate at least hourly or in some cases half- hourly service intervals.

This irregular level of service impacts its desirability and attractiveness resulting in lower patronage to that which might be achievable with a more regular service pattern, even when taking account of the rural nature of some station locations. The large amount of single track in place along the line within the scope area of this strategic study constrains the ability of achieving any service change aspirations.

Solution/Intervention Option

An hourly service in each direction on the Heart of Wessex Line could be transformational in terms of attracting suppressed demand. This service change is not achievable on current infrastructure and will therefore require intervention. For a standard hour service (where the train runs in the same slot every hour), the following is likely to be required based on the analysis carried out as part of this study ...

I totally agree with the service frequency comments; a standard hourly frequency would do so much for the line - as it states interventions would be needed to make that work, unless trains took a very leisurely schedule.   Good to read elsewhere that GWR (Great Western Railway) have committed ("covid allowing") to step up to a 2 hourly service from this December.

I must point out that the text above is incorrect in referring to "all other corridors being at least hourly".  Top of my list of exceptions is Westbury to Swindon which suffers the same issues as described above in terms of the poor service level constraining the attraction of new traffic, and I will also mention Cheltenham Spa to Worcester, Exeter to Okehampton, Plymouth to Gunnislake and Par to Newquay.   There are references to Okehampton, Gunnislake and Newquay elsewhere in the report, with the infrequent services there acknowledged.


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