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Author Topic: Cross Country - new through journeys from Bristol - Jan 2022  (Read 1623 times)
grahame
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« on: January 21, 2022, 05:38:13 am »

Flagged up this morning - a couple of Cross Country services out of Bristol in the early morning that I was not aware of:





Looks like Cross Country are now running 170 units in passenger service from Bristol
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CyclingSid
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« Reply #1 on: January 21, 2022, 07:04:42 am »

But I thought they were short of staff due to Covid and had an industrial dispute with train managers, or am I behind the times.
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paul7575
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« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2022, 11:12:25 am »

I think the Cambridge through service started quite a while ago, but initially as a through service to Stansted.  I remember it being highlighted back around 2019, but it may not have run while timetables have been reduced for Covid reasons.

IIRC (if I recall/remember/read correctly) it originally ran in service from Gloucester, but the stock arrived from somewhere else, maybe Cardiff. When overnight stabling transferred to Bristol they made use of the resulting early start to add a very early passenger service from Bristol to Gloucester, before GWR (Great Western Railway) started up.

Here’s the original discussion:
http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=21044.msg262207#msg262207

Paul
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Bmblbzzz
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« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2022, 05:04:45 pm »

The Cardiff service doesn't really add anything new to the Portsmouth trains we already have, but the Cambridge service is potentially very useful. Shame it doesn't run at other times!
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paul7575
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« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2022, 07:04:37 pm »

The Cardiff service doesn't really add anything new to the Portsmouth trains we already have, but the Cambridge service is potentially very useful. Shame it doesn't run at other times!
Problem is it’s always going to be non-standard compared to the normal service pattern. The ex-Cardiff trains usually go through to Nottingham, and the trains to Cambridge usually only start from New St.  Also, there’s an off pattern partial return service, but it only runs Leicester to Gloucester…
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grahame
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« Reply #5 on: January 21, 2022, 08:25:13 pm »

The Cambridge train offers a rich tapestry of direct trains - from Bristol to Worcestershire Parkway, to University, Nuneaton, Leicester, Peterborough, Ely and Cambridge. I can recall so MANY trips to Cambridge, heavy baggage in hand, awkward London transfer and then arriving in the wrong suburb of Cambridge.  And trips to Leicester, Ely and Peterborough too with that same Hammersmith and City or 205 crossing (never gave a course in Nuneaton - nearest was in Atherstone).

But, let's face it - this looks like a quirk of operational convenience as it's done, and the whilst there's a market for DIRECT trains that are a little slower, end to end this is a lot slower, not at the time of day people will use it, and there's no train back at the end of the visit.   Doesn't even call at Cambridge (North) even though there's a Manea stop (probably 100% required locally - a fast growing station, but I can't imagine there is a significant number of passengers from south west of Birmingham to there)
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« Reply #6 on: January 23, 2022, 03:51:23 pm »

The early morning Bristol to Cardiff used to be a Voyager which then ran up to Manchester via Bristol as it’s back workings. It moved from an empty stock run to a passenger one a few years back. It’s now a 170 with a back working to Nottingham. I think the empty stock for that used to run direct from Barton Hill without touching Temple Meads.

The Cambridge run used to come down on the back of the first Birmingham - Cardiff and split off at Gloucester with Birmingham crew to start from there. At present it’s crewed by Bristol and someone used common sense and thought it may as well run in passenger service.
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« Reply #7 on: January 23, 2022, 04:46:58 pm »

The Cambridge run used to come down on the back of the first Birmingham - Cardiff and split off at Gloucester with Birmingham crew to start from there. At present it’s crewed by Bristol and someone used common sense and thought it may as well run in passenger service.

It provides a useful extra early train from Worcestershire Parkway to Birmingham for the morning commute.  Though as with other routes CrossCountry are operating a very patchy service through there at the moment, with 2-hourly frequencies at best on the Cardiff<>Nottingham route and yawning five hour gaps during the middle of the day.
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« Reply #8 on: January 23, 2022, 07:31:27 pm »

Was very surprised to be at Temple Meads early one morning before Christmas to discover there was Bristol - Stanstead Airport XC (Cross Country Trains (franchise)) service.  It was cancelled.
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