GEML franchise 2016

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by Dave1987, 18 Aug 2015.

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  1. Dave1987

    Dave1987 Established Member

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    The next franchise on GEML should be announced soon. The franchisee is almost certain to promise to have more regular faster services blah blah blah, but even with a brand new fleet of trains that would be near impossible. The state the track is in currently is diabolical, with numerous speed restrictions in place and severe line congestion at times because there are just too many trains. Not exactly sure what the next franchise will change.
     
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  3. Simon11

    Simon11 Member

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    ITT should be out Sept, with hand in date in December. It will then be around June before they announce the winner and around October franchise starts?

    However, it doesn't take much for the process to get delayed.
     
  4. MrPIC

    MrPIC Member

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    Poor old West Anglia always gets left out of GA franchise discussion hehe =)
     
  5. colchesterken

    colchesterken Member

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    Easy add 2 tracks all the way to Colchester
    run trains non stop to Colchester then Ipswich & Norwich
    ( the clue is in my name )
     
  6. GB

    GB Established Member

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    "Easy"? Do you have a magic wand and a bottomless money pit?
     
  7. HH

    HH Established Member

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    No he has an opinion and a keyboard. :p
     
  8. jopsuk

    jopsuk Veteran Member

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    tunnel under on the way out of Liverpool street from the intercity platforms, head straight to Colchester? fifty miles of express tunnels, job done. Maybe an extension to Ipswich? That'll sort "Norwich in 90" and then some.
     
  9. NotATrainspott

    NotATrainspott Established Member

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    Wait for the second London-Midlands HSR line to be built to relieve HS2. Leeds and Newcastle traffic alone wouldn't be able to saturate the new line so they'll likely try to use the London end to relieve other lines as well. Taking it up the M11 could allow it to relieve the ECML given that it's the entire section between Alexandra Palace and Biggleswade which is the bottleneck, and it would seem more than feasible to then have a branch come off around Stansted Airport and head over to Colchester to take over the longer-distance Anglia traffic.
     
  10. asylumxl

    asylumxl Established Member

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    Think the comment was a bit tongue in cheek.
     
  11. 306024

    306024 Established Member

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    Can't quite see that being in the GEML 2016 franchise somehow ;)
     
  12. MK Tom

    MK Tom Established Member

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    Isn't there already a thread for this? Weren't Stagecoach/Abellio, First and NatEx shortlisted for it?
     
  13. Dave1987

    Dave1987 Established Member

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    Last thread was about AGA itself and turned into a bit of a trolling fiasco and was locked. This thread is specifically about the future franchise and not about attacking or defending the incumbent.
     
  14. absolutelymilk

    absolutelymilk Established Member

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    It's been very quiet on this thread, no rumours about who will get the franchise? (which is due to be awarded in June)
     
  15. Sleepy

    Sleepy Member

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    :D Perhaps they are all praying they don't get it ?:cry:
    Seriously what are the plans for DMU replacement given 153's on borrowed time and 156's are being worked into the ground ?
     
  16. 43074

    43074 Established Member

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    That will all depend on the rolling stock plan of the winning bidder, the DfT hasn't specified which stock can/cannot be used in the same way they did for Northern & TPE. If I were a betting man I'd have money on a replacement fleet for the 90s+Mk3s & additional DMUs - new or cascaded - given the requirement for direct Lowestoft - Liverpool Street services and the extension of Norwich - Cambridge services to Stansted.
     
  17. TheEdge

    TheEdge Established Member

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    There are plenty of rumours.

    First Group; currently winning the rumour race. Rumoured that First Bus in Norfolk has recently become First Bus and Rail Norfolk.

    National Express; feeling is an equal number of staff and passengers would jump ship if they came back.

    Abellio; despite what many think from a staff POV they've been pretty good and most would like to see them hold it.
     
  18. samuelmorris

    samuelmorris Established Member

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    I'm not honestly sure the general public would want Abellio for the next franchise - disregarding the anti-Abellio sentiment often banded about, the customer satisfaction survey results were rather poor, and regardless of whose fault it is, they will be associated with the increase in train faults and up until recently poor standard of cleanliness on the trains (the latter of which I have to admit, does seem to be improving). I don't think NX were particularly well liked either. First probably would have the better image as far as East Anglia is concerned as they didn't run West Anglia or Intercity routes, did away with the remaining slam door stock and introduced the Desiros, as well as ran the 315s and 321s, set the refurbishment plan for the former in motion and refreshed the latter and operated said fleets before they became too worn out. It was too long ago for me to remember public opinion on the quality of their staff.
    On the other hand, I would argue that First have had a mediocre reputation for quality of service on FCC and GWR. GWR they seem to have turned around, not too sure what people thought of FCC at the time of the franchise transfer, regardless of whether people feel GTR is any better/worse.

    Without considerable investment that I'm sure won't be forthcoming and diverted instead to other regions, there's little any new operator could do to reverse the line's fortunes. However, I would very much like to see at least the following over the duration of the franchise:

    - Replace the LHCS fleet
    - Resolve the DMU fleet shortage issues, however that may be achieved
    - Refurbish all Mk3 EMUs to a 'Renatus' standard and/or set replacement plans in motion for older units (e.g. 317/5s)
    - Introduce electronic delay repay scheme for all ticket types in line with other operators
    - Continue improvements in train cleaning/upkeep to avoid already refreshed units ending up in the state some have during the current franchise
     
  19. 387star

    387star On Moderation

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    Would tickle me if nx got it I mean that will be a third attempt for relivery for that. franchise by them alone

    Abellio seem to be liked by staff and have endured a franchise with very. Limited scope that was intended to be much shorter than it turned out to be

    They. Have made a few improvements and actually the refurbishment of the 317/6 and 156 fleet looks fantastic
     
    Last edited: 10 May 2016
  20. TheEdge

    TheEdge Established Member

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    The sad thing for Abellio is all of those are things that they never had the chance to do given how short their franchise has been. If they do lose it I honestly think they will be unfairly remembered.

    When we think to what they have done like 156 refurbs, Mk3 refurbs, various major station refurbishments, the bike parks and generally tidying up NX's mess they have been a lot better than many think.

    None of three stand a chance if they don't do some major fleet renewal and until NR pull their finger out of their backside. Saying that a big rumour is that one of the bidders has included a 100% fleet replacement with new stock in their bid...
     
  21. samuelmorris

    samuelmorris Established Member

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    The refurbishment of the 317/6s to me looks 'sufficient' - it looks tidy, but it's nothing out of the ordinary, it certainly doesn't make the units any different from an 'as new' condition to the original spec other than perhaps a less 80s colour scheme. Despite the considerable criticism it drew, apart from the terrible doors I still think the Eversholt 321 demonstrator made a solid effort at transforming 25 year old EMU into something fairly comparable to modern stock. Whether doing that across the board is cost-effective of course is another matter. Nonetheless, given the extended length of the franchise from its origin, a refurb to the standard of the 317/6s is what I really would have expected pretty much across the board. They've delivered that sort of thing with the LHCs, and one might argue that the 321/4s from the WCML are similar in standard, but the 321/3s saw very minimal effort, and the condition the 170s ended up in was inexcusable.


    As for the rumour of 100% fleet replacement, I'd find that very hard to believe. I could potentially believe a 100% replacement on the DMU fleet and sending the small fleet of 170s off to bolster another TOC, full replacement of the LHCS set makes sense, replacement of all the 317s is a fair possibility, but:

    - replacing all 94 321s? where would they send them all?
    - replacing the 360s and 379s would seem utterly pointless

    It's been too long since the Electrostar and Desiro UK now so a new build of stock for the mainstay of the fleet would have to be different to that currently in operation.
    It would be a great opportunity to once and for all deal with the fleet shortage issues that have plagued the route since I can remember, but it'd be a huge investment, I'll believe it when I see it.

    It must be fairly close to the announcement of the winning bidder now, mustn't it?
     
  22. Steve14

    Steve14 Member

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    In one way, if First win the bid, as much as I hate them for their rubbish excuses when delays occur; which is obviously caused by Network Rail with the signalling problem and stuff, they would be suitable. Don't see NX running it. Abellio should have tightened their services and pushed for track development. Agreed with what SamuelMorris said too. If First get it, they can:

    - replace the LHCS with 801s if they increase the order from their current one. With that, invest in track development and double up the lines to Colchester.
    - not sure what is exactly being replaced by the 166s in the west, but use the replaced fleet (minus pacers) if they can and brand it 'eastern regional railways' followed by a deep refurb.
    - once the heathrow connect services are taken over by crossrail, use the fleet to form fast southend services.
    - rebrand to Great Eastern Railway rsther than keeping it 'First'

    By doing this, they operate on both east and west with crossrail running on both lines. it could also, if possible, allow the XC to re-establish a link with London by having services like Bristol-Norwich if they invest in an bi-mode to function on both AC and non AC lines.
     
  23. 43074

    43074 Established Member

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    Where to send any displaced trains doesn't matter so much for the winning bidder anyway, and the 360s and 379s are relatively small fleets anyway so I could see them being displaced if nothing else in the interests of having a more uniform fleet. New trains are almost a guarantee - it'd be very hard to win the franchise without - but 100% fleet replacement is in the ''believe it when I see it'' pile for me as well; I'd love that to happen though!
     
  24. samuelmorris

    samuelmorris Established Member

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    It wouldn't matter to the winning bidder, but I can't see DfT being too happy about an order of rolling stock so large that it sees large numbers of units laid up with no operator before they're due for retirement. Point taken on the 360s as they are a relatively small fleet, but without the gangway connectors they'd be a bit non-standard if they joined in with any other Desiros unless they were sent somewhere not currently using them (e.g. newly electrified routes). However, for the 379s, they're 42% of the west anglia fleet, that's not exactly a small fleet. Replacing units that will only be 5 years of age at the time of the franchise start point and make up almost half of one of the main fleets seems barmy, whether for commonality or otherwise. What would be nice is if sufficient fleet commonality was established that 379s could be used on either route out of Liverpool Street, as their use would certainly bump up the proportion of modern rolling stock operating on the major GEML routes at peak times, but I think that's probably very wishful thinking.
     
  25. SpacePhoenix

    SpacePhoenix Established Member

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    Could the 360s have the cabs rebuilt with gangways without falling foul of the crash regs? If they could who'd be most likely to take them on out of the existing operators of 350s/450s (SWT, LM or TPE) of the new GEML franchise holder decides that they don't want the 360s?
     
  26. CosherB

    CosherB Established Member

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    No chance.
     
    Last edited: 11 May 2016
  27. ainsworth74

    ainsworth74 Forum Staff Staff Member Global Moderator

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    I think they also suffered from having their short franchise extended part way through. It's a bit of different exercise when you're bidding on the basis of a two year contract to then being given a four year contract. I wonder if they wouldn't have done things a bit different if they'd known from the outset that they were going to have over four years in control?
     
  28. hwl

    hwl Established Member

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    The 387s and 379s will be compatible and Porterbrook happen to have order for 20 units and have options for 20 more. Only 6 units so far spoken for for 3 years.

    Might this say something about bidders plans?

    Also plenty of 321 and 322 ex TSGN and Northern that could get the Renatus treatment.
     
  29. samuelmorris

    samuelmorris Established Member

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    The 34 remaining possible units in the 387/3 fleet wouldn't be sufficient to replace all the 317s, but they would be sufficient to replace all the 317/5s and 317/8s under AGA's control. Food for thought...

    The 321/4s from GN coming across would make sense if they are going to refurbish the entire fleet - are the 321/9 and 322 units definitely leaving Northern when the 4-car 331s arrive? If so, that's another 21 units in total they could make use of.
     
  30. Dave1987

    Dave1987 Established Member

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    Complete fleet renewal on the entire franchise would be astonishing. When you consider there is 94 x 321's plus 21 x 360's on just GE (so 460 carriages) and there would need to be a lot more than that ordered so all peak services are 12 cars so you would be talking 500+ carriages just for GE let alone all the carriages for Anglia services plus the London - Norwich fleet, and West Anglia fleet.
     
  31. samuelmorris

    samuelmorris Established Member

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    Are there that many peak services that should be 12-cars that aren't now? I wouldn't have thought there would need to be that many extra units to achieve that from what I've seen. However, yes you'd be looking at something like 150 vehicles for Intercity, at least 500 for GE, at least about 320 for WA, and in order to rectify the shortage issues and add extra capacity for the new franchise's demands, I'd say at least 80 for the rural routes. That'd make it a rolling stock order similar in scale to the Thameslink programme. I can't see it happening myself, nice though it would be. In practice, I think replacements for the LHCS, extra DMUs to assist or replace the 153s and 156s, and perhaps a commitment to replace the older 317s by the end of the franchise is the best we can realistically expect.
     
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