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Cambrian ML: case for reopenings?

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70014IronDuke

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Looking at the Cambrian main line, is there a case for re-opening (I assume there were stations there previously, closed in the 60s?) at

a) Hanwood ?
b) near Caerhowel for Montgomery?

Not huge populations, but I assume a lot of folks in the village cluster around Hanwood work in Shrewsbury?

Are there any local initiatives, or is these car-centric areas?

Of course, whether the single line sections and service pattern as they currently stands would be able to accommodate any extra stop is another issue. If an hourly service were introduced, perhaps these stops could be inserted on alternate hours?
 
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Harbornite

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Looking at the Cambrian main line, is there a case for re-opening (I assume there were stations there previously, closed in the 60s?) at

a) Hanwood ?
b) near Caerhowel for Montgomery?

Not huge populations, but I assume a lot of folks in the village cluster around Hanwood work in Shrewsbury?

Are there any local initiatives, or is these car-centric areas?

Of course, whether the single line sections and service pattern as they currently stands would be able to accommodate any extra stop is another issue. If an hourly service were introduced, perhaps these stops could be inserted on alternate hours?

On another note, hasn't the reopening of Carno been given the go-ahead or some support?
 

LNW-GW Joint

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Running times on the single track sections are pretty tight.
With nearly all trains running through to Birmingham there's no slack anywhere to make up for extra stops.
I think they would have to look at speed increases to generate the extra time.
Stock is also limited to the ETCS-fitted 158s.
Montgomery is a sizeable village, but is already 3 miles from the Cambrian.
Anybody using the train today just drives 5 miles further to Welshpool, not much in commuter terms.
Carno is the same with Newtown/Caersws. The days of stopping at every hamlet have gone.
There's also the down-side of inserting extra tedium into existing journeys.

Hanwood is a different sort of place - part of Birmingham commuter territory, but there are still some awkward gaps in the timetable.
If there was a full hourly timetable, and more units with longer tunrnround times, it might make sense.
I still think some Newtown-Shrewsbury-Crewe interlopers would be a good idea.
All part of the 2018 W&B franchise debate, really.
 

The Planner

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Only viable place for reopening anything is between Dovey and Aberystwyth without spending massive amounts of cash on new infrastructure such as Bow St. Carno wont work as it is.
 

Gareth Marston

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There's been a campaign to reopen Carno for some 15 years the local AM backs it but public transport apathetic Powys CC can't be bothered so it struggles to get traction however recently Cerdigion CC has thrown support to reopening Bow St. WG are taking it seriously and its got to the top of the list.

The population of Abermule has more than doubled in last few years and probably has the best business case of any of the closed stations in Wales. Hanwood would depend on whether the long mooted Shrewsbury parkway ever happens.
 

LNW-GW Joint

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The Craven Arms to Llanelli line has a pretty good try at that. Carno is no smaller than some of the places that have stations on that line.

And the Cambrian Coast of course, and Conwy Valley.
That doesn't mean there is a business case to reopen tiny stations, though.
If you reopened all the stations on the Cambrian main line, current usage would plummet.
Current journey times are reasonably competitive, but not if you add half an hour for more stops.
 

6Gman

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When I read the thread title I assumed we were talking Welshpool - Oswestry - Gobowen/ Whitchurch!

Maybe not.

:)
 

Dr_Paul

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If you reopened all the stations on the Cambrian main line, current usage would plummet.

I was thinking of just Carno, which isn't that tiny a place, and, if reopened, would add only a couple of minutes to a journey.
 

Harbornite

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When I read the thread title I assumed we were talking Welshpool - Oswestry - Gobowen/ Whitchurch!

Maybe not.

:)

That was the old Cambrian main line, the line from Sutton bridge jn is the alternative which has survived as part of the network. By the way, you can check out the progress of the restoration of the line through Oswestry on the Cambrian railways website.
 

AndyW33

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That was the old Cambrian main line, the line from Sutton bridge jn is the alternative which has survived as part of the network. By the way, you can check out the progress of the restoration of the line through Oswestry on the Cambrian railways website.

In fact the Shrewsbury-Welshpool (or more accurately Shrewsbury-Buttington, just outside Welshpool) line was never part of the Cambrian Railway network at all. Pre-grouping it was operated jointly by the GWR and LNWR.
 

Harbornite

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In fact the Shrewsbury-Welshpool (or more accurately Shrewsbury-Buttington, just outside Welshpool) line was never part of the Cambrian Railway network at all. Pre-grouping it was operated jointly by the GWR and LNWR.

Yes that's right. The Cambrian network basically consisted of Whitchurch- Machynlleth via Welshpool, the branches to Aberystwyth and Pwllheli and the Mid Wales line.
 

The Planner

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I was thinking of just Carno, which isn't that tiny a place, and, if reopened, would add only a couple of minutes to a journey.

Not as simple as that, the 2 - 2½ minutes it would add would cause problems at Tallerdig where the crossing moves take place. The infrastructure was only built to allow stops at the current stations.
 

70014IronDuke

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Running times on the single track sections are pretty tight.
With nearly all trains running through to Birmingham there's no slack anywhere to make up for extra stops.
I think they would have to look at speed increases to generate the extra time.
Stock is also limited to the ETCS-fitted 158s.
Montgomery is a sizeable village, but is already 3 miles from the Cambrian.
Anybody using the train today just drives 5 miles further to Welshpool, not much in commuter terms.

Looking at the map, your distances appear a bit out. It looks more like 1.5 - 1.75 miles to the Cambrian, where the B4385 crosses the line. (I assume that would be the likely ideal point for a station - if there was one in the old days, that is?)
And Welshpool looks more like 9-10 miles.

Nonetheless, I accept you point may still stand. Except I was not thinking very much in terms of commuters.
TBH, I didn't think these would exist much?

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--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
The Craven Arms to Llanelli line has a pretty good try at that. Carno is no smaller than some of the places that have stations on that line.

But that is all the Central Wales line really exists for. The Cambrian is more of a strategic secondary main line.

Carno has a population - dang, I think Wiki said 720, I can't be bothered to look it up again. My guess is, had it not closed (presumably in the early 60s?) it might have continued to this day. But all the new infrastructure - plus the time penalty - would it be worth it?

Also, there is nothing else near Carno. Montgomery is twice the size, with surrounding hamlets, I'd hve thought.
 

LNW-GW Joint

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Looking at the map, your distances appear a bit out. It looks more like 1.5 - 1.75 miles to the Cambrian, where the B4385 crosses the line. (I assume that would be the likely ideal point for a station - if there was one in the old days, that is?)
And Welshpool looks more like 9-10 miles.
Nonetheless, I accept you point may still stand. Except I was not thinking very much in terms of commuters.
TBH, I didn't think these would exist much?
But that is all the Central Wales line really exists for. The Cambrian is more of a strategic secondary main line.

Carno has a population - dang, I think Wiki said 720, I can't be bothered to look it up again. My guess is, had it not closed (presumably in the early 60s?) it might have continued to this day. But all the new infrastructure - plus the time penalty - would it be worth it?

Also, there is nothing else near Carno. Montgomery is twice the size, with surrounding hamlets, I'd hve thought.

You're right about Montgomery station, around MP40 near where the B4385 crosses the line.
But how many people are in a radius that would find it more convenient than Welshpool?
It's an area of multiple hamlets and no real centre.
Personally, I think they got it right by rationalising the Cambrian main line to the current stops, which gave it a medium/long distance character.
They did the same to the North Wales coast line Chester-Prestatyn.
But they never got round to rationalising the Central Wales line, or Wrexham-Bidston and many others, so we are stuck with painfully slow as well as infrequent services.
I don't know the subsidy for the Central Wales line and the others, but I bet it is horrific.
The WG hasn't got deep pockets for more like it.

I did the Borders railway recently - also through some remote country.
The difference is it has a capital city at one end (Edinburgh), and a sizeable town at the other (Galashiels), generating significant daily commuting.
Gala is about 15000 pop (similar to Aberystwyth and Newtown).
Montgomery has 1295, Carno has 730 (I know numbers aren't everything!).
 

40129

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TBH I can't see Hanwood ever re=opening. Not only would it cause problems with scheduling as mentioned in above posts. but the village has a half decent bus service to/from Shrewsbury so no real need for a station
 

ChiefPlanner

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I don't know the subsidy for the Central Wales line and the others, but I bet it is horrific.

Last figures I saw - was an operating cost / revenue ratio of nearly 8 to 1. Had to believe I know with a single car unit (largely) - but an awful lot of track and infrastructure for what is a lightly used railway - not helped by the timetable (yes I know there are changes recently) and a non route based train crew strategy at the south end which must involve some inefficiencies.

Mind you - a close look at Inverness - Far North and Kyle would be equally depressing - though the Kyle line has a good 12 weeks or so of busy traffic - the Far North has continued to decline (passenger wise) , in recent years.Not good.
 

Bevan Price

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Yes that's right. The Cambrian network basically consisted of Whitchurch- Machynlleth via Welshpool, the branches to Aberystwyth and Pwllheli and the Mid Wales line.

Plus Barmouth Jn - Dolgellau and a few branch lines.
Carno population given as 741, which probably makes it too small to justify the cost of reopening / reconstructing the station.
 

Harbornite

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Plus Barmouth Jn - Dolgellau and a few branch lines.
Carno population given as 741, which probably makes it too small to justify the cost of reopening / reconstructing the station.


I never realised that Barmouth jn- Dolgellau was Cambrian, I had always assumed it was GWR like Dolgellau- Ruabon.
 
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