A use for the Class 317/7s?

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SprinterMan

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I had a a thought about a possible use of the class 317/7s that would not only benefit Greater Anglia but Heathrow Connect as well. If Heathrow Connect take the 9 317/7s and replace their 5 360/2s with them. One can work the terminal 4 shuttle and the other 8 can be double up so HEC will be replacing 5 car trains with 8 car trains. This will allow them to either start to provide 1st class, or they can reconfigure the seating and vastly increase capacity.

I am aware that class 317s can't accelerate as fast as 360s but the scheduling fits 360 services in between 165/166 operated services so acceleration shouldn't be a problem because 165s/166s have poor acceleration anyway. 3 360s are required to operate HEC services and a further 1 to operate the terminal 4 shuttle so if each of these 360s is replaced by 2 317s it leaves 1 unit free (like there is 1 360 left free today), or 2 units left free if the shuttle is only operated by 1 unit.

Greater Anglia can then take the 5 360/2s, and then replace 2 peak hour 8 car 321s (that used to be 12 car when the 317/7s were still around) with 10 car 360/2s, increasing capacity (leaving 1 unit free). The displaced 321s can then be used to make further services up to 12 cars.

Alternatively, the 5 360/2s can be reduced by a car to make them 4 car units and standard with GA's 3601/s so they can be used as 1 common fleet, and then the 5 redundant centre cars can be returned to Siemens to be used in the new LM 350/3s or TP 350/4s as centre cars from 350s and 360s are as near as makes no difference the same, and doing this will save some money as 5 fewer cars will be needed to be built. The 360/2s will be needed to be fitted with 1st class, but this won't be a problem as Siemens are still making 350/360 seats (for LM/TP) and because the 360/2s are already in a base colour scheme (grey with orange doors) they will not need to be repainted, and just rebranded as Greater Anglia.

I know this is unlikely to happen because BAA would not want to swap newer stock for older stock, but what do you think of my proposal. :)
 
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swt_passenger

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Greater Anglia can then take the 5 360/2s, and then replace 2 peak hour 8 car 321s (that used to be 12 car when the 317/7s were still around) with 10 car 360/2s, increasing capacity (leaving 1 unit free). The displaced 321s can then be used to make further services up to 12 cars.

...but what do you think of my proposal. :)
I suggest that if GA actually wanted the extra capacity it would be a heck of a lot easier to just keep the 317s. But, isn't the reason the 317s were off-leased because they've agreed with DfT that they aren't needed at this time?
 

SprinterMan

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I suggest that if GA actually wanted the extra capacity it would be a heck of a lot easier to just keep the 317s. But, isn't the reason the 317s were off-leased because they've agreed with DfT that they aren't needed at this time?
They were returned because they are airport express units with a very small number of seats compared to other 317s/321s and were being used on commuter work that they were not suited to.
 

rick_suffolk

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They were returned because they are airport express units with a very small number of seats compared to other 317s/321s and were being used on commuter work that they were not suited to.
if the desire was there then the 317/7s could have stayed i'm sure. instead of usung them in main line commuter runs why not confine them to branches, eg romford/upminster, colchester/walton, manningtree/harwich etc? its very frustrating to be standing on train passing laid up trains in ilford sidings just there to entertain grafitti artists
 

captainbigun

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Also worth pointing out that a 12 car 317 is guaranteed to have a bum on every seat, something physically not possible on a 321. Similarly a 12-car 317/7 provides more standing room than an 8 car 321.

These are all questions asked of the Abellio management, they declined to answer. So, it's very clearly a case of maximising their premium to the DfT.

Speaking of which the numbers have been released....robbed from wnxx, Tony wouldn't mind.

Tony Miles wrote:
HIGHEST sealed bid!!

Yes - Arriva bid even more for East Coast than National Express.

For interest - the premiums in the bids for the 29-month Greater Anglia franchise were:

Abellio - £418m
Stagecoach - £359m
GoAhead - £347m

Whilst their bids were pretty close both the lower bidders haven't got a clue where Abellio reckins it will find over £60m of additional income - even after taking a few 317/7 sets out of traffic..

Dutch civil servants have gone ballistic and demanded a look at the figures in Abellio's West Coast bid....

Tony
 

Wath Yard

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It rather goes without saying that the other bidders don't know where the extra £60 million comes from. If they knew then their bids would have been £60 million higher. However, just because Stagecoach and GoAhead don't know where it comes from doesn't necessarily mean it is unachievable. Personally I welcome Abellio's expansion in the UK. They are hardly the only TOC to cut costs to the bone, but at least when they do it the taxpayer benefits.
 

captainbigun

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I take it he means East Anglia (rather than East Coast)?

If Arriva had outbid NX for the ECML franchise (but been turned down) then that'd be a bigger story.
No, he does mean Arriva. I presume the DfT took the view that their numbers were unachievable, which given the NatEx outcome they clearly were!
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
It rather goes without saying that the other bidders don't know where the extra £60 million comes from. If they knew then their bids would have been £60 million higher. However, just because Stagecoach and GoAhead don't know where it comes from doesn't necessarily mean it is unachievable.
Taken on the face of it, that's right, but that's a significant difference given that the same set of stats provided by the DfT were used by all of the bid teams.

Personally I welcome Abellio's expansion in the UK. They are hardly the only TOC to cut costs to the bone, but at least when they do it the taxpayer benefits.
Hmm, are you a regular user of their services with Northern or GA? I'd hazard a guess at not.
 

tbtc

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No, he does mean Arriva. I presume the DfT took the view that their numbers were unachievable, which given the NatEx outcome they clearly were!
If it was the ECML franchise that he was referring to then this does kind of blow a hole in the "Government take the highest bid, regardless of passenger issues" argument then (if they turned down a higher bid from Arriva)...
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Hmm, are you a regular user of their services with Northern or GA? I'd hazard a guess at not.
A pretty regular user of Northern, yes. And they really aren't that bad. They have their issues but so does every other TOC.
Northern aren't doing a bad job with what they have.

If they'd introduced the Pacers then you could blame them for the Pacers (and other old DMUs), but they inherited a mixed bag, weren't allowed to source Chinese DMUs, saw the Government plan for replacement DMUs withdrawn (due to the "Lancashire Triangle" going ahead instead)...

...they do well enough with the stock available to them (despite the cable theft etc)
 

captainbigun

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If it was the ECML franchise that he was referring to then this does kind of blow a hole in the "Government take the highest bid, regardless of passenger issues" argument then (if they turned down a higher bid from Arriva)...
Possible that the scoring has changed, that must be a good 4 or 5 years back. DfT must apply some due diligence to avoid completely outrageous tenders slipping through the net.

The whole Northern thing does seem to split opinion, it seems to be one end of the scale or the other.

As for GA, time will tell, but sending back the 317s sent out all the wrong signals, and their inability to discuss the decisioning and stone walling with a 321 has more seats than a 317 argument is poor at best. I have to put up with their service every day. I'll be on first name terms with Ruud before long.
 

Bald Rick

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First group had the highest bid for the last EC franchise, but it was blocked by the minister due to their appalling record on GW at the time. Allegedly.

In a hypothetical universe where First were awarded the last EC franchise, then defaulted (presumably more spectacularly than NX did in our universe, as their premium payments would have been higher) would First now be corporata non-granta in the rail world, screwing their remaining franchises for every last penny up to termination and concentrating on the (far more profitable) buses?
 

SGS

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I wonder if a couple should be used on Northern's Newcastle - Morpeth/Chathill services. It would mean some timetable changes, because some Morpeths work through to the MetroCentre, but it might be worthwhile if it frees up a couple of 142s for strengthening servies elsewhere.
 
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