Do HSTs still run at 125mph?

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Western Sunset

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This coming Monday is the 45th anniversary of the introduction of 125mph running in Britain. Do any HSTs still regularly run at 125mph in everyday service?
 
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Mag_seven

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Cross Country possibly?

EDIT: @Darandio has just beaten me to it.

I think the NMT (National Measurement Train) may also do 125mph
 
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Western Sunset

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I thought it might be XC, but where exactly? Seems to be Voyagers north of Leeds, so is it south of Derby, Bristol?
 

DanNCL

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CrossCountry do between York and Darlington and on the odd section of the ECML in Northumberland, but the majority of the XC route has linespeeds lower than 125mph. The NMT still runs at 125mph too.

I thought it might be XC, but where exactly? Seems to be Voyagers north of Leeds, so is it south of Derby, Bristol?
The HSTs have two daily return trips to Edinburgh. These operate morning southbound, afternoon/evening northbound.
 

Western Sunset

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Thanks Dan, so between York and Darlington is one stretch. Trying to think if anywhere south of Derby is 125mph rated.
 

hexagon789

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This coming Monday is the 45th anniversary of the introduction of 125mph running in Britain. Do any HSTs still regularly run at 125mph in everyday service?
XC are the only TOC to run HSTs at 125.


CrossCountry do between York and Darlington and on the odd section of the ECML in Northumberland, but the majority of the XC route has linespeeds lower than 125mph. The NMT still runs at 125mph too.
Thanks Dan, so between York and Darlington is one stretch. Trying to think if anywhere south of Derby is 125mph rated.
Derby-Birmingham is 90/HST 125
 

Western Sunset

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Thanks Hex. Wondering what Bristol to Cogload Jn is? Can't think much beyond there (if any) is 125mph.
 

hexagon789

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Thanks Hex. Wondering what Bristol to Cogload Jn is? Can't think much beyond there (if any) is 125mph.
110 max, one 7mi section Bristol/Cogload. South of Cogload there is nothing higher than 100 and past Exeter it's mostly lower than that.
 

Western Sunset

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Thanks again.

So basically, HST 125 running is a bit in Northumberland, Darlington to York and Derby to Birmingham (except for the island platform at Burton and the curve at Water Orton). Is that it?
 

Starmill

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Thanks again.

So basically, HST 125 running is a bit in Northumberland, Darlington to York and Derby to Birmingham (except for the island platform at Burton and the curve at Water Orton). Is that it?
It depends. A small part of the section described as Northumberland is actually in Scotland. There are also still other places where they can work but only occasionally, for example between York and Doncaster or between Bristol Parkway and Swindon.
 

Killingworth

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Timed a XC over a few miles in the Tamworth area a few months ago. Crept up to 125 and held it for quite a stretch, then sudden burst up to exactly 130, held for a very short period before settling back at precisely 125. There's life in those old trains yet.
 

172007

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Anywhere LSL decide a blur of Nanking Blue would look and the HST limit is 125mph Immagine. They technically have a TOC licence just an open access operator.
 

Starmill

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What is there to stop Bristol-Cogload being 125? Looks as well laid out as Padd-Didcot.
The layout isn't even necessarily the most important factor. What's underneath the track, the types of fixtures, and the general maintenance regime are all pretty important. Depending on the signalling you have also going faster does not necessarily even save time.
 

judethegreat

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The layout isn't even necessarily the most important factor. What's underneath the track, the types of fixtures, and the general maintenance regime are all pretty important. Depending on the signalling you have also going faster does not necessarily even save time.
Yeah i guess the Somerset Levels play a part.. But regards those other issues, how would it be any different to the clearing of other routes for higher speeds? Just the factor it is more out of the way geographically (linking less large population centres etc), so considered not as worth it? Perhaps if it was the only route to Exeter more would be spent on it, maybe resulting in higher line speeds if possible?
 

Watershed

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Yeah i guess the Somerset Levels play a part.. But regards those other issues, how would it be any different to the clearing of other routes for higher speeds? Just the factor it is more out of the way geographically (linking less large population centres etc), so considered not as worth it? Perhaps if it was the only route to Exeter more would be spent on it, maybe resulting in higher line speeds if possible?
Increasing the linespeed often means compromising the headway (and hence capacity) of the line. Don't get me wrong, you're not going to have a train every 2 mins along the Somerset Levels but it'd certainly not be a straightforward job resignalling the whole lot... for the sake of 15mph on a few fast trains for a few miles.
 

172007

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The layout isn't even necessarily the most important factor. What's underneath the track, the types of fixtures, and the general maintenance regime are all pretty important. Depending on the signalling you have also going faster does not necessarily even save time.
Apparently XC wanted the line speed increasing around the Barnt Green area, curve radii would take it but the embankment and substrate would not. I guess piles and a concrete slab track bed would work but at what cost.
 

Starmill

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Yeah i guess the Somerset Levels play a part.. But regards those other issues, how would it be any different to the clearing of other routes for higher speeds? Just the factor it is more out of the way geographically (linking less large population centres etc), so considered not as worth it? Perhaps if it was the only route to Exeter more would be spent on it, maybe resulting in higher line speeds if possible?
It would probably be more useful to focus on clearing the stopping service out of the way than increasing the speed of the fast trains.

Apparently XC wanted the line speed increasing around the Barnt Green area, curve radii would take it but the embankment and substrate would not. I guess piles and a concrete slab track bed would work but at what cost.
Exactly. Just about anything is doable with enough concrete, but is it value for money?
 

Irascible

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Exactly. Just about anything is doable with enough concrete, but is it value for money?

If it was the electrified route to Plymouth maybe - but I have a vague suspicion you'd need to do something heavy east of Bristol to cope...
 

Western Sunset

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Thanks for all the responses. Good to see they're still in everyday use in passenger service doing what they were designed to do. Wonder if they'll make it to 50 years of 125 running - I'm excluding the NMT in this.
 

hexagon789

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Thanks for all the responses. Good to see they're still in everyday use in passenger service doing what they were designed to do. Wonder if they'll make it to 50 years of 125 running - I'm excluding the NMT in this.
Depends what you count I suppose. Do you count October 1976 as that's when the Western Region commenced with 125mph HST operation or do you count from when HSTs started working NE-SW services, as CrossCountry will be the last 125mph passenger operator.
 

brad465

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What is there to stop Bristol-Cogload being 125? Looks as well laid out as Padd-Didcot.
Yeah i guess the Somerset Levels play a part.. But regards those other issues, how would it be any different to the clearing of other routes for higher speeds? Just the factor it is more out of the way geographically (linking less large population centres etc), so considered not as worth it? Perhaps if it was the only route to Exeter more would be spent on it, maybe resulting in higher line speeds if possible?
I think level crossings also play a part here. From personal experiences of driving that route in Train Simulator 201x at 125mph for fun, between Bristol and Taunton saved around 5 minutes from the normal 30-31 minute journey non-stop, which may not be fully justifiable for investment yet. Also even if 125 were possible now, the only HST operations that are not XC on that route are calling at all the stops, so will either not have time to reach 125mph or only for a brief moment.
 

tiptoptaff

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I think level crossings also play a part here. From personal experiences of driving that route in Train Simulator 201x at 125mph for fun, between Bristol and Taunton saved around 5 minutes, which may not be fully justifiable for investment yet. Also even if 125 were possible now, the only HST operations that are not XC on that route are calling at all the stops, so will either not have time to reach 125mph or only for a brief moment.
Ignoring Train Sim for a moment....

GWRs HSTs are, in 4car formation, restricted to 100mph due to braking force. As a result, its almost impossible to arrive at Highbridge on time, as they use the old 2+8timings so expect you to hit 110, but you can't.
 

hexagon789

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I think level crossings also play a part here. From personal experiences of driving that route in Train Simulator 201x at 125mph for fun, between Bristol and Taunton saved around 5 minutes from the normal 30-31 minute journey non-stop, which may not be fully justifiable for investment yet. Also even if 125 were possible now, the only HST operations that are not XC on that route are calling at all the stops, so will either not have time to reach 125mph or only for a brief moment.
GWR HSTs are restricted to 100 anyway, so that won't make a difference there.

Only XC run regular scheduled HST passenger trains at 125mph.
 

craigybagel

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GWRs HSTs are, in 4car formation, restricted to 100mph due to braking force. As a result, its almost impossible to arrive at Highbridge on time, as they use the old 2+8timings so expect you to hit 110, but you can't.
Surely the much better acceleration of the 2+4 sets would cancel out the lost top speed over such a relatively short distance?

Thanks for all the responses. Good to see they're still in everyday use in passenger service doing what they were designed to do. Wonder if they'll make it to 50 years of 125 running - I'm excluding the NMT in this.
It's hard to see Crosscountry not being tempted to replace them with the 222s when they become available.
 
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