Future AT300 deployment plans in the South West

Status
Not open for further replies.

irish_rail

Established Member
Joined
30 Oct 2013
Messages
1,813
Location
Plymouth
Has / When will the daily plan be released of which services will be operated by 5 / 9 / 10 car sets on the London - Plymouth route?

It is known 5 car sets will operate onto Penzance, but just trying to ascertain which services are going to run as 10 and 9 car sets, and which as miniature 5 car sets.
Have read that pairs will run in the rush hours, but not sure that is believable because these are the quietest trains of the day on this corridor, so was wondering if there is any official plan yet?!!

In my opinion, all Plymouth - Padd services should be 9 / 10 car, this is a proper intercity route and lets hope it remains as such.....
 
Sponsor Post - registered members do not see these adverts; click here to register, or click here to log in
R

RailUK Forums

The Ham

Established Member
Joined
6 Jul 2012
Messages
8,019
I don't know the full answer, however given that there is something like 59 HST's and there will be the equivalent of 57 full length (9 coach or in pairs forming 10 coach train) 80x's then it would be possible for GWR to run all nearly all their existing HST's as full length units. As such I'm not too worried about there being many half length trains.

There are a few variables which come into play which could reduce/increase this figure.
- services to places like Oxford could be run by EMU's rather than 80x's
- services along the Cotswold Line could be run by 80x's rather than 16x's
- 80x's will reduce journey times (meaning that fewer are needed to run at the same frequency)
- there are likely to be a more frequent services run (possibly by splitting services)
- it could be possible to do split working (possible options could include trains to Plymouth and Paignton or Penzance and Newquay or Cheltenham and Western-Super-Mere)
- It could be that few services run full length beyond places like Cardiff, Plymouth and Oxford

However, it should be noted that compared to a HST the 80x's will have about 60% of the capacity of the HST's when the 80x's run as half length (5 coaches) and about 120% of the HST's when the 80x's run as full length (9 or 10 coaches).

However even with the possible reduction in seats on individual services it could well be that extra local services are provided to compensate for the loss (and ideally then some so there isn't a repeat of XC's mistake).

It should also should be noted that these trains are being introduced as part of an extension to the current franchise and that future enhancements could be forthcoming during the next franchise.
 

jimm

Established Member
Joined
6 Apr 2012
Messages
5,093
Has / When will the daily plan be released of which services will be operated by 5 / 9 / 10 car sets on the London - Plymouth route?

It is known 5 car sets will operate onto Penzance, but just trying to ascertain which services are going to run as 10 and 9 car sets, and which as miniature 5 car sets.
Have read that pairs will run in the rush hours, but not sure that is believable because these are the quietest trains of the day on this corridor, so was wondering if there is any official plan yet?!!

In my opinion, all Plymouth - Padd services should be 9 / 10 car, this is a proper intercity route and lets hope it remains as such.....

No detailed timetable and stock diagram plan has been released. Why should it be? It is April 2016. The first AT300 for the West Country is not due to be delivered until May 2018 and the new timetable won't start until December that year.

GWR internally will know what they will do, but beyond the broad outlines of the plans for improved West Country frequencies they announced last year, such as a London train to/from Cornwall at least every two hours and extra London-Exeter semi-fasts, we don't know too much, except that the AT300s will also provide some degree of cover for Cotswold Line peak services and that GWR is apparently looking to order some more. Nine five-car sets according to Modern Railways - or something else according to a post here http://www.railforums.co.uk/showthread.php?t=129049&page=2

The future shape of West Country services has already been discussed at some length here: http://www.railforums.co.uk/showthread.php?t=118850

And I'd hardly describe a train seating 320 people or so as 'miniature'. That would be a 153...

I don't know the full answer, however given that there is something like 59 HST's and there will be the equivalent of 57 full length (9 coach or in pairs forming 10 coach train) 80x's then it would be possible for GWR to run all nearly all their existing HST's as full length units. As such I'm not too worried about there being many half length trains.

I believe GWR currently has 52 rakes of HST trailers - I expect someone else can confirm or correct this figure. There were 47 GWR HST diagrams on weekdays last autumn, according to the 125 Group. Plus four daily diagrams for the Class 180s.
 
Last edited:

irish_rail

Established Member
Joined
30 Oct 2013
Messages
1,813
Location
Plymouth
Well I would say a 5 coach train on the main intercity route between London and the south west would best be described as Miniature. Would a 5 coach train once an hour be tolerated between London and Newcastle for example? Plymouth is a big city, with the wider south west catchment area creating a very well populated area.

Ok, 5 coach AT300 will probably have more seats than a XC 221, but has nothing been learned from Virgins mistake with voyagers?? Cheap tickets on the Plymouth to Midlands route do not exist, in order to price people off the trains which do not have capacity for all the people who would like to use them. 5 car sets hourly during the day from Plymouth to London could well lead to a similar situation.

With the Cotswold line now jumping on the AT300 bandwagon, I can see sets being hived off for that , with the south west again ending up the poor relation.

And yes, it may still be 2 and a half years away, but it would be good to have the information in the open, in order for various stakeholders to be aware of what we down here may be letting ourselves in for (8 coach 600 seat HSTs being replaced by 5 coach 350 seat trains ).
 

NotATrainspott

Established Member
Joined
2 Feb 2013
Messages
3,081
Having five car sets means that you can run a full length train to Plymouth and then only half of it need continue to Penzance. There's no dispute that the cities in the South West are cities which deserve an adequate rail service. If anything, having half sets means that it's possible to provide a better rail service to Plymouth as it becomes economical to run more trains, since they don't need to cart around fresh air at the end of their journeys when demand is lower. The other thing to consider is that on the GWR network, whether a five, nine or ten car train is used can be varied according to demand. The minimum service would be a half set but extra half sets or longer trains can be swapped in at the times when the demand is needed most. The carriages for commuter services during the week can go to Cornwall at the weekends. With a fleet of only long trains, that just isn't possible, so both commuters and long distance travellers lose out.
 

irish_rail

Established Member
Joined
30 Oct 2013
Messages
1,813
Location
Plymouth
Yes, and I accept your point about half sets going to Cornwall, but my argument is that all services between Plymouth and Padd should be formed of two half sets or a 9 car set.
 

JN114

Established Member
Joined
28 Jun 2005
Messages
2,708
Yes, and I accept your point about half sets going to Cornwall, but my argument is that all services between Plymouth and Padd should be formed of two half sets or a 9 car set.

And what's to say they won't? As has been said its over 2 years away yet, can we save the whining for when anyone actually *knows* what the diagrams will be?
 

NotATrainspott

Established Member
Joined
2 Feb 2013
Messages
3,081
Yes, and I accept your point about half sets going to Cornwall, but my argument is that all services between Plymouth and Padd should be formed of two half sets or a 9 car set.

Why would GWR acquire trains that they do not plan to use? A 9/10 carriage train has a lot more revenue-earning potential than an overcrowded 5 carriage one.
 

The Ham

Established Member
Joined
6 Jul 2012
Messages
8,019
Yes, and I accept your point about half sets going to Cornwall, but my argument is that all services between Plymouth and Padd should be formed of two half sets or a 9 car set.

Based on the number of sets it is likely that most services for most of their length will be full length unless there are significantly more services run by the new trains than are currently run by HST's.
 

jimm

Established Member
Joined
6 Apr 2012
Messages
5,093
With the Cotswold line now jumping on the AT300 bandwagon, I can see sets being hived off for that , with the south west again ending up the poor relation.

It is not 'jumping on the bandwagon'. At the time the order was agreed it was stated that this would be the case. It probably means no more than one nine-car or 2x5 AT300 formation from the Cotswolds into London in the morning peak - which can then form a West Country service at 9am or earlier - and one the other way in the evening. Never mind that if more AT300 sets are ordered, then such an arrangement would no longer be needed.

Re the claims of five-car trains between London and Plymouth - the following line appeared in a stakeholder presentation given by GWR last April at the start of the current direct award franchise - before the AT300 order was confirmed hence the point about 'depending on stock choice'.

Standard pattern hourly service from London running non-stop between Reading and Taunton extending hourly to Plymouth and 2 hourly to Penzance. Depending on stock choice trains may split at Plymouth, with half the train continuing to Penzance

I don't doubt it's not enough to satisfy the conspiracy theorists but it looks like a clear enough statement of intent about train lengths east of Plymouth to me. Do you really think that GWR, which is well aware of the loadings on its services, will think it's a great idea to almost halve the available seating capacity?
 
Last edited:

NSEFAN

Established Member
Joined
17 Jun 2007
Messages
3,384
Location
Southampton
The Ham said:
Based on the number of sets it is likely that most services for most of their length will be full length unless there are significantly more services run by the new trains than are currently run by HST's.
In which case, why not just make all sets 10 car and guarantee you'll never have short formed trains? Given the majority may be full length anyway it is just penny pinching to have a couple running as 5 car, given the spare units to make them 10 car would otherwise be sitting round, doing nothing except costing money to lease. Also, whilst you can easily have 2x 5 car sets when it's busy, I can forsee GWR's and the passengers' opinion of "busy" differing somewhat. ;)
 

The Ham

Established Member
Joined
6 Jul 2012
Messages
8,019
In which case, why not just make all sets 10 car and guarantee you'll never have short formed trains? Given the majority may be full length anyway it is just penny pinching to have a couple running as 5 car, given the spare units to make them 10 car would otherwise be sitting round, doing nothing except costing money to lease. Also, whilst you can easily have 2x 5 car sets when it's busy, I can forsee GWR's and the passengers' opinion of "busy" differing somewhat. ;)

There are a few reasons:

- by having 5 coach units you can run a train from London and then split it. As an example you could do so at Exeter and run half to Plymouth and Half to Paignton. Now by doing that you can run every train that used to run to just Paignton can now run to Plymouth as well (increasing the frequency of services to Plymouth) and a lot of services which went to Plymouth can now run to Paignton as well (increasing the frequency of services to Paignton). Other splits could allow direct services to Newquay (which could remove the need for a DMU unit to only shuttle along that branch line allowing it to be used elsewhere)

- by having 5 coach units short trains (where for most of the time they will be fine) can run beyond places Plymouth, Cardiff and Oxford

- by having 5 coach trains less carriage millage is required, as short trains can be run on some of the late evening services where demand is lower. is there a need for a full HST running from Oxford to London leaving at 20:00 and arriving at 21:00?

- by having 5 coach trains less coaches are needed sat spare, as if we assume that two HST's are spare at Paddington at present they could be "replaced" with 3 units with 5 coaches in the future. Then if one unit of 10 coach train fails one can replace the failed unit and if a 9 coach set fails then two can replace the failed unit. Even if two units have already failed then the worst that would happen is that a 5 coach unit would be sent out rather than if that were to happen with two HST's covering then the service would have to be cancelled.

- Linked with the above, by having short units maintenance tasks have less of an impact on the number of seats available.

One final comment, the franchise extension is to 2019, which means that if GWR do see large growth and/or there are a lot of problems with there being too few long units there is scope for the next franchise to get more units or lengthening existing units (i.e. 5 to 9 coaches) to arrive within a fairly short time after the introduction of the new trains. It is not like this "fixes" the trains for a full franchise (say 7 years) which is often the case when new trains are introduced.
 

Clarence Yard

Established Member
Joined
18 Dec 2014
Messages
1,435
The GW DA AT300 diagrams (which I cannot share, for obvious reasons) did indeed have the vast majority of London-Plymouth workings as 9 or 10 car. There were a few workings diagrammed in winter to be 5 car SX, 3 single legs associated with very late or very early departures from Paddington and one return trip during the day.

That daytime return trip was planned to be augmented during the summer timetable period and it was deemed possible to do that because the unit availability was considered generous.

West of Penzance it was planned to be a wholly 5 car AT300 railway in winter with 2 or 4 car cl.158 on the other half hour, giving 2 TPH there. Splitting and joining of AT300 units was planned to take place SX only at Plymouth, apart from one evening split taking place at both Exeter and Bristol, both for unit balancing & maintenance purposes.

The number of sets ordered reflected the need for two additional 9 car sets to work Cotswold diagrams (it was actually 3 sets on combined Cotswolds/South West diagrams, cycling with the West fleet), releasing 5 cars IEP sets for augmentation elsewhere. This was because the IEP fleet was insufficient to operate the December 2018 timetable without chronic overcrowding. If they hadn't been authorised by the DfT, the W of E order would have been reduced by 2 units.
 

jimm

Established Member
Joined
6 Apr 2012
Messages
5,093
The GW DA AT300 diagrams (which I cannot share, for obvious reasons) did indeed have the vast majority of London-Plymouth workings as 9 or 10 car. There were a few workings diagrammed in winter to be 5 car SX, 3 single legs associated with very late or very early departures from Paddington and one return trip during the day.

That daytime return trip was planned to be augmented during the summer timetable period and it was deemed possible to do that because the unit availability was considered generous.

West of Penzance it was planned to be a wholly 5 car AT300 railway in winter with 2 or 4 car cl.158 on the other half hour, giving 2 TPH there. Splitting and joining of AT300 units was planned to take place SX only at Plymouth, apart from one evening split taking place at both Exeter and Bristol, both for unit balancing & maintenance purposes.

The number of sets ordered reflected the need for two additional 9 car sets to work Cotswold diagrams (it was actually 3 sets on combined Cotswolds/South West diagrams, cycling with the West fleet), releasing 5 cars IEP sets for augmentation elsewhere. This was because the IEP fleet was insufficient to operate the December 2018 timetable without chronic overcrowding. If they hadn't been authorised by the DfT, the W of E order would have been reduced by 2 units.

Thanks for that detail. Much as I expected.

Even so I suppose someone will still pop up shortly and claim that early morning and late night trains will be jammed to the doors if worked by a five-car train, along with all services in Cornwall, on a cold, damp Tuesday in January, never mind the improvements in service frequency in Cornwall generally from December 2018, along with the extra through services between London and Penzance and extra London-Exeter semi-fasts.
 

irish_rail

Established Member
Joined
30 Oct 2013
Messages
1,813
Location
Plymouth
The GW DA AT300 diagrams (which I cannot share, for obvious reasons) did indeed have the vast majority of London-Plymouth workings as 9 or 10 car. There were a few workings diagrammed in winter to be 5 car SX, 3 single legs associated with very late or very early departures from Paddington and one return trip during the day.

That daytime return trip was planned to be augmented during the summer timetable period and it was deemed possible to do that because the unit availability was considered generous.

West of Penzance it was planned to be a wholly 5 car AT300 railway in winter with 2 or 4 car cl.158 on the other half hour, giving 2 TPH there. Splitting and joining of AT300 units was planned to take place SX only at Plymouth, apart from one evening split taking place at both Exeter and Bristol, both for unit balancing & maintenance purposes.

The number of sets ordered reflected the need for two additional 9 car sets to work Cotswold diagrams (it was actually 3 sets on combined Cotswolds/South West diagrams, cycling with the West fleet), releasing 5 cars IEP sets for augmentation elsewhere. This was because the IEP fleet was insufficient to operate the December 2018 timetable without chronic overcrowding. If they hadn't been authorised by the DfT, the W of E order would have been reduced by 2 units.

All seems relatively sensible, lets hope the plans stay as they are then, a handful of 5 coach trains a day I can cope with, pity they will no doubt be worked by Plymouth drivers, but you cant have it all :D

And thanks for the response Clarence_yard, this was precisely the information I was looking for when opening the thread
 
Last edited:

The Ham

Established Member
Joined
6 Jul 2012
Messages
8,019
West of Penzance it was planned to be a wholly 5 car AT300 railway in winter with 2 or 4 car cl.158 on the other half hour, giving 2 TPH there. Splitting and joining of AT300 units was planned to take place SX only at Plymouth, apart from one evening split taking place at both Exeter and Bristol, both for unit balancing & maintenance purposes.

(Presuming that Penzance should be Plymouth)

Given that the HST I used to get to Cornwall on Christmas Eve had people standing down the centre of the coaches to Exeter but had a lot of spare seats west of Plymouth that shouldn't be too much of a problem.

Given that I think that a 2 coach 158 has about 120 seats plus the 315 seats that a 5 coach 80x will likely have means that over the hour there will still be at least 430 seats between Plymouth and Penzance (vs about 530 in a HST, so a reduction of about 19%). If however it is a 4 coach train (158's) then it goes up to 550 (just over that provided by a single HST) and if there are very busy time periods it could even be a 9/10 coach 80x plus a 4 coach 158 there could well be 870 seats over the hour (or the equivalent of 1.6 HST's).

GWR may need to keep an eye on passenger loadings as with the 80x's the 158's and the XC services there could well be 3 tph during some parts of the day, meaning that rail could become quite an attractive travel method; which could lead to significant growth.
 

Clarence Yard

Established Member
Joined
18 Dec 2014
Messages
1,435
Yes, sorry - west of Penzance would have been interesting!

The day to day loadings are being kept under close review by GWR so they can plan the December 2018 diagrams with some confidence. Getting summer 2019 right with such a step up in service provision is going to be a fair old job for the planners.

Incidentally, a PRM 2 car cl.158 has around 132 seats.
 

The Ham

Established Member
Joined
6 Jul 2012
Messages
8,019
Incidentally, a PRM 2 car cl.158 has around 132 seats.

Which just makes the number of seats a little better than my assumed 120 seats.

Therefore it would be a minimum of 447 seats over two trains per hour vs circa 535 on a HST. Which means the drop in the number of seats per hour on the lowest provision compared with today isn't going to be much, yet in busy hours there could be significantly more.
 

freetoview33

Established Member
Joined
24 May 2009
Messages
3,589
Location
Henbury, Bristol
I think this

London - Gloucester/Cheltenham (Hourly) - Class 800
London - Plymouth (2 Hourly) - Class 802 (9 Car)
London - Plymouth - Penzance/Paignton - Class 802 (2 X 5 Car - Split at Plymouth)
London - Cardiff - Swansea (Half Hourly) - Class 801
London - Bristol Parkway - Bristol Temple Meads (Half Hourly) - Class 801
London - Bath Spa - Bristol Temple Meads (Half Hourly) - 2 X Class 800 (Extensions to Weston/Taunton)
London - Oxford - Worcester (Hourly) - Class 802 (5 Car) (Peak 2 X 5 Car)

If someone could work out what this would use. I would be greatful!
 
Last edited:

jimm

Established Member
Joined
6 Apr 2012
Messages
5,093
I think this

London - Gloucester/Cheltenham (Hourly) - Class 800
London - Plymouth (2 Hourly) - Class 802 (9 Car)
London - Plymouth - Penzance/Paignton - Class 802 (2 X 5 Car - Split at Plymouth)
London - Cardiff - Swansea (Half Hourly) - Class 801
London - Bristol Parkway - Bristol Temple Meads (Half Hourly) - Class 801
London - Bath Spa - Bristol Temple Meads (Half Hourly) - 2 X Class 800 (Extensions to Weston/Taunton)
London - Oxford - Worcester (Hourly) - Class 802 (5 Car) (Peak 2 X 5 Car)

If someone could work out what this would use. I would be greatful!

Well you think wrong.

Plymouth service will be hourly. You're also forgetting the Exeter semi-fasts.

London-Penzance service goes at least every two hours west of Plymouth. Paignton will be served by three London services each day on weekdays.

Swansea will still only be hourly, Cardiff half-hourly

Lots of Worcester trains continue to Great Malvern or Hereford. And Cotswold Line will be near enough half-hourly in direction of the main peak flows morning and evening.
 

freetoview33

Established Member
Joined
24 May 2009
Messages
3,589
Location
Henbury, Bristol
Well you think wrong.

Plymouth service will be hourly. You're also forgetting the Exeter semi-fasts.

London-Penzance service goes at least every two hours west of Plymouth. Paignton will be served by three London services each day on weekdays.

Swansea will still only be hourly, Cardiff half-hourly

Lots of Worcester trains continue to Great Malvern or Hereford. And Cotswold Line will be near enough half-hourly in direction of the main peak flows morning and evening.

I did say Hourly to Plymouth! One terminating every 2 hours and one splitting every 2 hours. It would give Paignton a better service and Plymouth would have an hourly service.

Though I don't see the point of GWR trains from London going past Weston to Taunton/Exeter and beyond as that is what XC is for!

Does Exeter need half hourly to Paddington?
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
What about this then

Service 1
London - Reading - Didcot - Swindon - Kemble - Stroud - Stonehouse - Gloucester - Cheltenham (2 Hourly) - Class 800

London - Reading - Swindon - Gloucester - Cheltenham (2 Hourly) - Class 800

Service 2
London - Reading - Newbury - Hungerford - Bedwyn - Pewsey - Taunton - Exeter (Peak to Plymouth) (Hourly) - Class 802 (5 Car)

London - Reading - Newbury - Westbury - Castle Cary - Taunton - Exeter - Plymouth (2 Hourly) - Class 802 (9 Car)


London - Reading - Taunton - Exeter - Plymouth - Penzance/Paignton - Class 802 (2 Hourly) (2 X 5 Car - Split at Plymouth)

Service 3

London - Reading - Swindon - Bristol Parkway - Newport - Cardiff (Hourly) - Class 801

London - Reading - Didcot - Swindon - Bristol Parkway - Newport - Cardiff - Swansea (Hourly) - Class 801

Service 4

London - Reading - Bristol Parkway - Bristol Temple Meads (Half Hourly) - Class 801

London - Reading - Chippenham - Bath Spa - Bristol Temple Meads (Hourly) - Class 801 and/or 2 X 5 Car Class 800

London - Reading - Didcot - Swindon - Chippenham - Bath Spa - Bristol Temple Meads - Weston (Hourly) - 2 X Class 800 (Peak extension to Taunton)

Service 5

London - Oxford - Worcester (Hourly) - Class 802 (5 Car) (Peak 2 X 5 Car)


I have heard an idea of a Cardiff - Newport - Severn Tunnel Junction - Bristol Temple Meads - Bath Spa - Corsham - Chippenham - Swindon - Didcot - Oxford service using one of 319/365/387. Not sure if it would work but it is a proposal.
 

Master29

Established Member
Joined
19 Feb 2015
Messages
1,427
Well I would say a 5 coach train on the main intercity route between London and the south west would best be described as Miniature. Would a 5 coach train once an hour be tolerated between London and Newcastle for example? Plymouth is a big city, with the wider south west catchment area creating a very well populated area.

Well, East Midland operate 5 car 222's to Sheffield and Nottingham during the day. They are cities are they not. Given that the AT300 capacity of a 5 car unit is greater than a Voyager I think there is a bit of scaremongering going on.
Services like the Cornish Riviera, the Cornishman and the Royal Duchy may get busy but will probably be the 9 car sets anyway.
 

The Ham

Established Member
Joined
6 Jul 2012
Messages
8,019
Well I would say a 5 coach train on the main intercity route between London and the south west would best be described as Miniature. Would a 5 coach train once an hour be tolerated between London and Newcastle for example? Plymouth is a big city, with the wider south west catchment area creating a very well populated area.

Well, East Midland operate 5 car 222`s to Sheffield and Nottingham during the day. They are cities are they not. Given that the AT300 capacity of a 5 car unit is greater than a Voyager I think there is a bit of scaremongering going on.
Services like the Cornish Riviera, the Cornishman and the Royal Duchy may get busy but will probably be the 9 car sets anyway.

Also people seem to be forgetting that this is NOT a new franchise, rather just an extension to an existing one, as such it won't be long before more new trains will be being ordered. I would guess that there would be an announcement for X extra coaches/trains for delivery in 2022 to 2024 with an option for Y more between 2023 and 2026.

As such the new trains may only see 5 years of service before they start to be lengthened.
 

Noddy

Member
Joined
11 Oct 2014
Messages
378
Location
UK
What about this then:

Service 1
London - Reading - Didcot - Swindon - Kemble - Stroud - Stonehouse - Gloucester - Cheltenham (2 Hourly) - Class 800

London - Reading - Swindon - Gloucester - Cheltenham (2 Hourly) - Class 800

There is no way these trains won't be stopping at Kemble or Stroud. The two local MPs would have a fit. I could see the rationale behind them not stopping at Stonehouse but AFAIK the proposed GWR timetable for 2018 only includes local Swindon-Gloucester trains in the peaks so if they remove Stonehouse it's service would go from hourly to two hourly during the day.
 

jimm

Established Member
Joined
6 Apr 2012
Messages
5,093
I did say Hourly to Plymouth! One terminating every 2 hours and one splitting every 2 hours. It would give Paignton a better service and Plymouth would have an hourly service.

Yes, but that was hourly to Plymouth in the context of more Paignton trains splitting from a Penzance service, which would likely lead to overcrowding west of Exeter or Newton Abbot. And isn't going to happen.

Though I don't see the point of GWR trains from London going past Weston to Taunton/Exeter and beyond as that is what XC is for!

There aren't that many GWR HST services doing that run now and that's not going to change when the new trains arrive. Though most passengers wedged into a Voyager would probably welcome an increase...

Does Exeter need half hourly to Paddington?

It's not about Exeter, this service is mainly about the intermediate stations, so that the Plymouth and Penzance services will be non-stop between Reading and Taunton and no longer have to make stops along the Berks & Hants.

What about this then

Service 1
London - Reading - Didcot - Swindon - Kemble - Stroud - Stonehouse - Gloucester - Cheltenham (2 Hourly) - Class 800

London - Reading - Swindon - Gloucester - Cheltenham (2 Hourly) - Class 800

Service 2
London - Reading - Newbury - Hungerford - Bedwyn - Pewsey - Taunton - Exeter (Peak to Plymouth) (Hourly) - Class 802 (5 Car)

London - Reading - Newbury - Westbury - Castle Cary - Taunton - Exeter - Plymouth (2 Hourly) - Class 802 (9 Car)


London - Reading - Taunton - Exeter - Plymouth - Penzance/Paignton - Class 802 (2 Hourly) (2 X 5 Car - Split at Plymouth)

Service 3

London - Reading - Swindon - Bristol Parkway - Newport - Cardiff (Hourly) - Class 801

London - Reading - Didcot - Swindon - Bristol Parkway - Newport - Cardiff - Swansea (Hourly) - Class 801

Service 4

London - Reading - Bristol Parkway - Bristol Temple Meads (Half Hourly) - Class 801

London - Reading - Chippenham - Bath Spa - Bristol Temple Meads (Hourly) - Class 801 and/or 2 X 5 Car Class 800

London - Reading - Didcot - Swindon - Chippenham - Bath Spa - Bristol Temple Meads - Weston (Hourly) - 2 X Class 800 (Peak extension to Taunton)

Service 5

London - Oxford - Worcester (Hourly) - Class 802 (5 Car) (Peak 2 X 5 Car)

What about it? It seems to be just the same outline as your earlier post.

As Noddy says, Kemble, Stroud and Stonehouse stops are not going to be dropped. They have been promised an hourly service to and from London already. The bulk of the Cotswold Line/Worcester service will be worked by Class 800s unless an order for more 802s is confirmed. You still don't seem to want to recognise that the London-Worcester service is not some neat and tidy shuttle. The extensions to/from Great Malvern and Hereford need to be factored in and aren't at neat regular intervals either, never mind the half-hourly service in the direction of the main peak flows. And that contra-peak services, such as the early morning trains out of London, will be fine with a five-car train, as they are now with 180s working them.

I can't find a pdf of the slides from the full GWR presentation from last year online but there is a cutdown version that was used at a Travelwatch Southwest event, which does give the broad outline of all future GWR long-distance service patterns from December 2018 and more detail on the West Country services generally.

http://travelwatchsouthwest.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Travelwatch-Presentation-October-2015.pdf
 
Last edited:

The Ham

Established Member
Joined
6 Jul 2012
Messages
8,019
Yes, but that was hourly to Plymouth in the context of more Paignton trains splitting from a Penzance service, which would likely lead to overcrowding west of Exeter or Newton Abbot. And isn't going to happen.

The only thing to say on that is if there were some Plymouth services which split at Exeter to also serves Paignton but is offset by the reverse happening (i.e. the 3 daily Paignton services also splitting and serving both locations).

In doing so both Paignton and Plymouth would have the same number of seats being provided over the day, just over more services (i.e. 3 more to each, so Paignton would have 6 per day - about 1 ever 3 hours and Plymouth would retain it's hourly service plus three over the course of the day) which would provide a more even spread of seats over the day.

Yes that would attract more people to use the train, but that can be a problem for the next franchise to fix in (say) 5 years time (bearing in mind that then new trains are about 2 years away).
 

irish_rail

Established Member
Joined
30 Oct 2013
Messages
1,813
Location
Plymouth
Well, East Midland operate 5 car 222's to Sheffield and Nottingham during the day. They are cities are they not. Given that the AT300 capacity of a 5 car unit is greater than a Voyager I think there is a bit of scaremongering going on.
Services like the Cornish Riviera, the Cornishman and the Royal Duchy may get busy but will probably be the 9 car sets anyway.

Yes, and journey time squeezed into a 5 car 222 to Nottingham or Sheffield is about 2 hours. London to Plymouth is 3 hours 15ish with the new trains, its a very different route to the MML.

You also neglect to add that Sheffield has an hourly 7 car 222 to London, supplemented by a 5 car hourly service as well, so hardly a fair comparison.
 
Last edited:

The Ham

Established Member
Joined
6 Jul 2012
Messages
8,019
Yes, and journey time squeezed into a 5 car 222 to Nottingham or Sheffield is about 2 hours. London to Plymouth is 3 hours 15ish with the new trains, its a very different route to the MML.

You also neglect to add that Sheffield has an hourly 7 car 222 to London, supplemented by a 5 car hourly service as well, so hardly a fair comparison.

It depends on what you are comparing, if you are doing Exeter to London then the comparisons become a lot closer 2 hours vs 2 hours 15 minutes likely to be a 9/10 coach train supplemented with a 5 coach train.

However, it is likely that the majority of trains to Plymouth will still be 9/10 coaches on an hourly frequency with other local services (requiring a change) providing additional capacity.
 

jimm

Established Member
Joined
6 Apr 2012
Messages
5,093
The only thing to say on that is if there were some Plymouth services which split at Exeter to also serves Paignton but is offset by the reverse happening (i.e. the 3 daily Paignton services also splitting and serving both locations).

In doing so both Paignton and Plymouth would have the same number of seats being provided over the day, just over more services (i.e. 3 more to each, so Paignton would have 6 per day - about 1 ever 3 hours and Plymouth would retain it's hourly service plus three over the course of the day) which would provide a more even spread of seats over the day.

Yes that would attract more people to use the train, but that can be a problem for the next franchise to fix in (say) 5 years time (bearing in mind that then new trains are about 2 years away).

Sorry, but this Torbay thing just looks like another solution in search of a problem.

FGW/GWR has years of data on traffic to/from Torbay to refer to, which presumably shapes the current timetable as much as it does the plan for December 2018. I'd hardly describe Torbay as hard done by, with three London trains each way and three XC services each way all year, plus summer extras, and lots of connections at Newton Abbot throughout the day.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Top