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Author Topic: West Somerset Railway - heritage line, Bishops Lydeard to Minehead - possible link to main line at T  (Read 91287 times)
AMLAG
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« Reply #225 on: June 08, 2019, 10:01:27 am »

Indeed.

I rang the WSR a few days ago and the Minehead booking/enquiry clerk was apologetically unable to give any confirmation of a possible start date or times etc. of this long aspired for service,  which is now funded, incl a £60,000 CCIF contribution.

One could be forgiven for thinking that if a certain SWT now SWR  Senior Manager with a  farming background had been involved then it would be looking far more certain; viz the several new regular services introduced in the last couple of years between Yeovil and Waterloo via C.Cary, Frome and Westbury etc. (achieved without years and years of talk, promises and little action on the ground), not to mention the main line Saturday services to  Corfe Castle for Swanage.
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broadgage
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« Reply #226 on: June 10, 2019, 08:14:00 pm »

Do GWR have the stock to run this service?

A regular look at travelwatch would suggest not. Many recent days have seen a dozen or more short formations due to the standard "more trains than usual needing repairs"
I refer here not to the IETs but to the various older DMUs used on branch line services.

What on earth happened to the "loads of spare stock" that would result from IETs and class 387 EMUs displacing older units.

I have a cynical suspicion that this new service will run only for a very short part of the Summer season, and be frequently cancelled due to lack of stock.
Patronage should then be low enough to pronounce through trains as being a failure, and an experiment that does not need repeating for a few years.
« Last Edit: June 19, 2019, 08:35:49 pm by broadgage » Logged

A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
Western Pathfinder
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« Reply #227 on: June 10, 2019, 09:38:29 pm »

I would think that it all depends on how full a service is going to be offered, as to the amount of stock required to operate this if and when .
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grahame
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« Reply #228 on: June 10, 2019, 10:20:48 pm »

What on earth happened to the "loads of spare stock" that would result from IETs and class 387 EMUs displacing older units.

Rumour has it that there's a number of perfectly serviceable trains that could be used for the next 6 months to parked up at Long Marston and Papworth. Further work on them could render them servicable beyond.
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broadgage
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« Reply #229 on: June 29, 2019, 01:23:08 pm »

Does anyone know what is happening ?
Summer* is now one third* over, and presuming that a couple of weeks notice is to be given of starting the through trains, then summer will be half gone by the time it starts.

*There is more than one definition of summer, but when considering warm weather and holiday arrangements, a commonsense definition of summer is June, July, and August.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
Celestial
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« Reply #230 on: June 29, 2019, 01:38:08 pm »

It would have started by now but given your close interest, GWR is still trying to find a set with a buffet car.
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broadgage
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« Reply #231 on: June 29, 2019, 02:26:45 pm »

It would have started by now but given your close interest, GWR is still trying to find a set with a buffet car.

EVEN I would not expect a buffet for the journey between Taunton and Bishops Lydeard !
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
Timmer
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« Reply #232 on: June 29, 2019, 06:58:20 pm »

Does anyone know what is happening ?
Summer* is now one third* over, and presuming that a couple of weeks notice is to be given of starting the through trains, then summer will be half gone by the time it starts.
Itís not looking good is it.
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bignosemac
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« Reply #233 on: June 29, 2019, 07:17:22 pm »

I'm hearing on the jungle drums that it's unlikely to happen this year, bar one or two 'proving' runs. WSR are being overly cautious after nearly losing their safety certificate before the operating season started this year.
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grahame
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« Reply #234 on: June 30, 2019, 12:01:11 pm »

I'm hearing on the jungle drums that it's unlikely to happen this year, bar one or two 'proving' runs. WSR are being overly cautious after nearly losing their safety certificate before the operating season started this year.

That does not surprise me. Three pieces of circumstantial evidence point me this way, including a short-notice definite start date ("be prepared to go all hell for leather on publicity 'cos we won't have long") that is now history. But stranger things have happened at short notice!
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broadgage
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« Reply #235 on: June 30, 2019, 04:59:08 pm »

At the time, I cynically wondered if the adverse inspection report last year was a politically motivated attempt to prevent, deter, or delay, through running between network rail and the WSR.
I still have slight suspicions.

After reading yes minister, I have a mental picture of a minister for not doing anything saying,
Humphrey ! the wretched locals are on about trains to Minehead again. Any ideas what we can do about this.

Well minister, in view of climate change protests, we cant be seen to be anti-rail can we. But perhaps something more subtle could be done. Should I have a word with the chaps at rail safety, if they look hard enough something wrong could be found to stall this for a few years.

Jolly good idea, Humphrey, see to it please. Oh Humphrey, this might deter any similar nonsense elsewhere.

Yes minister it might.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
broadgage
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« Reply #236 on: July 03, 2019, 04:53:59 pm »

A recent conversation with several long standing WSR volunteers would appear to support my cynical views.
Remarks included "we have had our warning about the perils of through running, it is costing £250,000 without actually running a through train"

And "they want main line standards, despite being a light railway with a 25MPH limit"

Also "no concerns were raised about the track between bishops Lydeard and Norton Fitzwarren, which was the only bit planned to be used by through trains"

There was a general consensus that GWR do not have the stock to operate the service, and also that any through running had to be "nipped in the bud" lest it led to demands for a regular service.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
Timmer
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« Reply #237 on: July 03, 2019, 05:36:49 pm »

Well thatís that then.

The government should be doing all it can to get people out of cars onto rail. Yes this would have been a tiny step forward in the grand scheme of things, but like whatís happening down in the Swanage Railway it doesnít bode well.
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grahame
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« Reply #238 on: July 04, 2019, 01:45:30 pm »

There was a general consensus that GWR do not have the stock to operate the service ...

They certainly seem to be short of working trains far too often .... 165 / 166 problems this afternoon, the two busiest Swindon to Westbury services of the day cancelled, and no train on that line from 13:29 to 18:48.  Our commuters put up with it too often (somehow!) but I can just imagine how poorly it would be received on what would have been primarily a leisure service, with a different set of customers each day.

Quote
15:19 Swindon to Westbury due 16:00
16:21 Westbury to Swindon due 17:03
17:36 Swindon to Westbury due 18:18
17:36 Swindon to Westbury due 18:18 will be cancelled.
This is due to a fault on this train.
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eightonedee
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« Reply #239 on: July 04, 2019, 09:53:21 pm »

Perhaps (if and?) when the 769s arrive they could be run for testing on this route as part of their acceptance trials?

If they do not arrive on time presumably the GW fleet will be under strain.
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