GWR Dec 19 timetable

Discussion in 'Allocations, Diagrams & Timetables' started by nickw1, 9 Apr 2019.

  1. ABB125

    ABB125 Member

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    I've drawn a graph of a standard off peak hour of departures from Paddington as far as Reading, which is found below for anyone interested. Apologies for the mistakes that will inevitably be in the graph, but I think it is an interesting overview of the new GWR timetable.
    image1_2 (Custom).jpg
    (Apologies for the poor quality of the picture, for some reason the forum wouldn't let me upload a 2.4MB file, despite having done so in the past.)

    A few observations (mainly about paths which appear to be unused):
    • xx12/xx13
      • xx12 - a train could be squeezed in here (125 mph path), but it would only be 1 minute behind the xx10 HEx service at Airport Junction, which is probably not permitted. Pathing time could be added, but then you might as well depart PAD at xx13.
      • xx13 - a 125 mph path could be squeezed in here, and would be 2 minutes behind the HEx at Airport Jn. However, the following service is the xx15 Bristol fast train, so an xx13 would likely obstruct the progress of the xx15 as it slowed for RDG
      • Overall, there doesn't appear to be space here for another path.
    • xx23 - this follows the xx20 Oxford, which calls at Slough (2 minute dwell). Therefore, at least 1 minute of pathing would need to be added to the xx23, plus extra to avoid catching up the xx20 as it accelerates from Slough. Alternatively, a 110 mph path could fit but would have to go onto the slow lines at Maidenhead.
    • xx38 - there appears to be a clear 125 mph path here (maybe even a 110 mph path, although this may impact the xx45 Bristol fast). However, the xx36 on the graph is the Exeter semi-fast, which I believe alternates with a 110 mph Newbury Electrostar; this 110 mph path may mean there is no space for a following path.
    • xx42/xx43 - same as xx12/xx13
    • xx53 - same as xx23
    • xx58 - there appears to be a clear path here
    • xx00 - there appears to be a clear path here
    • If the Cheltenham/Bristol/Exeter flight could be shifted closer together, it would appear possible to fit another path in here
    Presumably some of these paths are used in the peaks. Off peak, I can't really see any use of the potential paths above (there seems to be plenty of recovery space in this timetable, so any extra paths would impact this), so I've just wasted 5 minutes, but it's (hopefully) some interesting analysis.

    In summary, there are 12 GWR paths (10 calling at RDG, 2 non-stop) and 4 HEx paths.


    A few questions:
    • Why does the xx07 Bedwyn train have 5 minutes dwell at RDG? Similarly, why does the xx20 Oxford have 3 minutes? Everything else has 2 minutes.
    • Why do some trains take slightly longer between PAD and RDG (for example, the xx07 Bedwyn takes 25 minutes, the preceding xx02 Bristol and xx04 Plymouth take 23 minutes)?
    • Why does the xx40 HEx take 1 minute longer to get to Airport Jn compared to all the others?
    Admittedly some of these variations could be due to incorrect information on RealTime Trains (although I think this is unlikely).
     
  2. jimm

    jimm Established Member

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    The Bedwyn services will wait at Reading from xx.31 to xx.37 to allow the xx.33 GWR services to Basingstoke to leave ahead of them, call at Reading West and then clear Southcote junction - this probably also includes some sort of allowance for the forthcoming opening of Reading Green Park station.

    If the Oxford trains hurtled out of Reading, they would conflict around Didcot with the preceding xx.45 northbound CrossCountry departures, which run ahead of the GWR services all the way to Oxford.
     
  3. cle

    cle Established Member

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    Could the Exeter have time for a Slough call too (and the Newbury on the other hour) ?
     
  4. ABB125

    ABB125 Member

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    Thanks. I thought it might be something like that.
    It appears that there is space in the timetable, but the extra ~3 minutes to get to RDG may mean it misses its path west of the station (although having said that, if the path is taken up by a 110 mph Electrostar in the other hour, which would take a few minutes longer, perhaps this isn't an issue).
    However, does Slough need another train calling? Probably not.
     
  5. cle

    cle Established Member

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    Perhaps not. But it's a very busy station, and it spreads the fast punters a little (vs the Oxford services) - and gives a proper M4/Thames Valley axis from Newbury and beyond to many jobs in Slough (not just thinking London journeys here).

    Equally it could give Maidenhead an off peak fast call.
     
  6. jimm

    jimm Established Member

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    There may be an argument that off-peak fast line calls at Slough could be placed in the Paddington-Bedwyn services, but the timetable planners have stuck to the Oxford/Cotswold trains covering these outside the peaks for the moment, which provides 2tph, while the Bedwyn services only run hourly.

    Most people commuting from Newbury to Slough for work would want direct services in the peaks, when there isn't the time for fast line trains to stop at Slough.
     
  7. jimm

    jimm Established Member

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  8. Master29

    Master29 Established Member

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    Just looked at the Cornwall to London services and lo and behold, despite GWR continually parroting faster trains to London all I see is services on average nearly 15 minutes slower rather than the 15 minutes faster spieled nonsense that I`ve been seeing for the last 5 years. Why are fast services stopping at Totnes and Tiverton Parkway? Another blatant lie by GWR and the DaFT in plugging the IET lemon. Just go to tickets on GWR`s website if you want links.
     
  9. HamworthyGoods

    HamworthyGoods Member

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    Just looked on SX comparing pre and post Dec 19 up from Penzance as you suggested:

    Pre Dec 19................Post Dec 19:
    PNZ....PAD..............PNZ....PAD
    05.05-10.02 4hr 57 04.58-09.59 5hr 1
    05.41-11.21 5h 40 06.04-11.29 5hr 25
    06.47-12.21 5h 34 07.10-12.29 5h 19
    07.41-13.15 5h 34 08.15-13.29 5h 14
    09.00-14.01 5h 01 09.15-14.27 5h 12
    10.00-15.22 5h 22 10.15-15.29 5h 14
    12.04-17.16 5h 12 12.15-17.29 5h 14
    14.00-19.20 5h 20 14.15-19.24 5h 9
    16.00-21.22 5h 22 16.15-21.29 5h 14
    17.42-23.42 6h 17.45-23.56 6h 11

    Average 5h 24m Average 5h 18m

    Care to substantiate the on average 15 minutes slower on Cornish services?
     
  10. jimm

    jimm Established Member

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    The change in the service patterns - removing stops at stations between Reading and Taunton from the Plymouth/Penzance trains, with the Exeter/Torbay semi-fasts covering those instead, was, as you note, announced in 2015, so why are you acting all surprised? Is there something wrong with places like Tiverton and Totnes having an hourly interval London service?

    All that was said by GWR was that journey times would be up to 15 minutes faster.

    What you seem to have done is looked at what happens to the Cornish Riviera (current 09.00 departure from Penzance) and not actually looked at the rest of the day's service.

    The new 07.10 departure from Penzance gets to Paddington at 12.29 - the current equivalent service would appear to be the 06.47 from Penzance, which reaches Paddington at 12.21. That's 5hrs 19mins from December (and no Westbury call to boot), so 15 minutes faster than the current 5hr 34minute run.

    The 08.15 from Penzance will reach Paddington at 13.29. Compared with the current 07.41, which makes it to Paddington at 13.15. That's five hours 14 minutes, compared with five hours 34 minutes, which looks like a 20-minute speed-up to me.

    Yes, the 09.15 is slower than the current 09.00 (no wonder, the 09.15 will make three extra stops in Devon), but the 10.15 saves eight minutes compared to the current 10.00. The 12.15 timing near enough matches the current 12.04, including an extra stop. The 14.15 takes 5hrs 9mins, the current 14.00 takes 5hrs 20 minutes. The 16.15 takes 5hrs 14mins, the current 16.00 takes 5hrs 22mins.

    The extended time of the 17.45 from Penzance may be down to adjustments in late-night engineering possession arrangements in the Thames Valley following the start of TfL operations on the relief lines and it probably isn't thronged with passengers making the full run anyway.

    In the other direction. most London-Penzance timings shave off a few minutes end to end, despite the allowance for splitting at Plymouth, and the replacement of the current 07.30 via Bristol (which reaches Penzance at 13.24) with a new 08.04 running direct to Taunton gets people to Penzance at 13.15.
     
  11. Geswedey

    Geswedey Member

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    I use Totnes frequently to and from Paddington these trains when I travel are well used, Totnes being a railhead for Dartmouth, Kingswear and to a much lesser extent Buckfastleigh and Ashburtun. Tiveton Parkway serves a large area including people driving from West, North and Mid Devon.
     
  12. irish_rail

    irish_rail Established Member

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    So on average a 6 minute journey saving Penzance to Paddington? If so, that really does prove the south west is being left behind in this new timetable. The splitting and joining at Plymouth really doesn't help and adds uneccessary minutes as does not getting the fastest paths between reading and London.
    Also worth noting the most popular train of the day, 1203 pad to pz will now have stops added at Taunton and possibly tiverton?
    No more 3 hour Plymouth to padd journeys either. Progress indeed.....
     
  13. Master29

    Master29 Established Member

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    Where is the 15 minutes faster times? Can you substantiate this.

    Pre Dec 19 Bodmin Parkway - Padd 06:12 - 10:02 = 3:50 Post Dec 19 06:04 - 09:59 = 3:55.
    06.57 - 11.21 = 4.24 07.16 - 11.29 = 4.13.
    08.07 - 12.21 = 4.14 07.39 - 12.09 = 4.30
    09.01 - 13.15 = 4.14 08.26 - 12.29 = 4.03
    10.16 - 14.01 = 3.45 09.29 - 13.29 = 4


    Look at the Cornish Riviera at 3.45. Indeed it used to be 3.41. Granted my average figure looking at it was from the top of my head rather than observation so my bad but it still shows GWR`s timetable boasts as hollow. I`ll use an average Cornish stop (sorry Bodmin). Considering these are mostly different services they`re not really comparable clockwise. Yes, there are some different fast services but at the expense of fast services already in operation, but none faster than 5 hours and your average was only 5 minutes difference rather than 15. Shunting services to make it look like they`re faster is nonsense. The timing is little different from HST timing. I have no doubt IET`s could be faster given acceleration however. Looking at comparisons there seems to be no average difference at all and as I said before less fast services from the Duchy overall. However. I admit this isn`t over this particular timetable change but the last few. I`m not saying it would be a problem but GWR have been deceptive here. They`re taking figures as a whole rather than individual services.

    The argument for Tiverton Parkway and Totnes getting more services is weak too given they both have the benefit of Plymouth and Exeter services. Why should Cornish fast services stop at these stations when they didn`t before?
     
  14. Master29

    Master29 Established Member

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    It`s not even that if you look closely at it. Hamworthy Goods doesn`t mention that the services are not matching clockwise. Negligible and pointless.
     
  15. irish_rail

    irish_rail Established Member

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    The worse thing is you could easily knock many minutes off the journey times, even with HSTs let alone IETs but unfortunately with the poor paths given all of this potential is wasted in order to speed up other services. I am starting to wish i hadn't lobbied my MP to keep us in the wider GWR franchise because it is clear that the south west doesn't feature prominently in GWRs improvement plans....
     
  16. Master29

    Master29 Established Member

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    One of our notable forum members (mention no names)who is very close to the pulse regarding the IET`s has admitted as much regarding the South West.
     
  17. irish_rail

    irish_rail Established Member

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    I guess the risk is that an open access operator steps up and provides a quick service with comfortable trains. Our GWR IET service wouldn't stand a chance.
     
  18. JonathanH

    JonathanH Established Member

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    Where is an open access operator going to run to? The post by ABB123 shows there is no realistic path out of Paddington for additional services. There doesn't seem to be much chance of an open access operator running Plymouth to London without being seen as primarily abstractive.
     
  19. Master29

    Master29 Established Member

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    A case of heart saying one thing but head saying the other. I`d love to see an open access operator on the W of E. It would clearly kick GWR where it hurts but as you point out, this isn`t going to happen and GWR know this, hence why both they and the DaFT can give such shoddy rolling stock to this region. I often wonder what Brunel would think. Personally, I reckon he`d be appalled at the IET and the W of E`s current state but that`s another story.
     
  20. JN114

    JN114 Established Member

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    Brunel had his passengers travelling in open coal trucks sat on wooden planks, on journey times over the West of England of over 8 hours...

    Your notion he’d somehow be appalled by today’s markedly improved offering by comparison is ridiculous in extremis.

    ***

    In just the examples you list from Bodmin there’s at least one 16 minute faster train. GWR have never said “all trains will be 15 minutes faster”, they’ve said “trains will be up to 15 minutes faster” - a statement you demonstrate they achieve. I’d also dispute Bodmin being an average Cornish station, with only 1 further stop before Plymouth; and the time savings in Cornwall widely acknowledged as being made on improved dwell times and faster station to station times the trains from Bodmin don’t have enough time to actually make up any time. Truro may have offered a more marked increase.

    ***

    I’d also dispute the notion that you can improve the pathing of the WofE trains - I made a lengthy and detailed post on this up thread already; and thought it had sunk in, evidently it has not. A “Cornish Railways” operator may have provided a different rolling stock solution, that I’d concede - but the base timetable would be no different, because that’s where the paths are. The name over the door won’t make that problem go away.
     
  21. irish_rail

    irish_rail Established Member

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    I have to disagree with regard pathing. If you ripped up the timetable and started again with priority for w of e expresses and build everything else around it then much much faster paths would exist. This is justifiable as it is by far GWRs longest distance route.
     
  22. JonathanH

    JonathanH Established Member

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    On the contrary, maybe people making a trip from Cornwall might not notice a slightly slower run into Paddington because as a percentage of the journey the additional time is negligible.

    A journey from London to Cornwall isn't defined by the 25 minutes between Paddington and Reading.
     
  23. jimm

    jimm Established Member

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    My bad?

    What a great excuse for posting an inaccurate claim and then cherry-picking part of the day's service in one direction at one station to try to justify yourself, while ignoring what two of us have posted about the differentials across the full day in both directions at Penzance, which was also in Cornwall the last time I looked.

    By all means bat for your corner of the world, but at least get your facts straight first and stop trying to twist what GWR has said - the statement was up to 15 minutes faster, not on average 15 minutes faster.

    There is a table knocking around somewhere that GWR put out in 2015 that showed the expected average journey time improvements to key West Country stations if AT300s were ordered and I am pretty sure those were mostly in single figures, with the exception of Penzance, which sounds a lot like how the December timetable has worked out.

    If you want radical time reductions then you had better start lobbying for lots of money to be spent all the way from Reading to Penzance to sort out the bargain basement and often challenging to operate route options that Brunel favoured on a great many of the lines he built away from the original GWR billiard table between London and Bristol.

    Unfortunately for your fantasy, it is not GWR's most heavily-used route, nor its most lucrative route, so no one is ever going to build the entire timetable around it. Things like pathing trains reliably through the single-line sections between Oxford, Worcester and Hereford and not stuffing up pathing between Paddington and Reading by getting it wrong are rather more important considerations when constructing the GW timetable than how far a train is going.
     
  24. Master29

    Master29 Established Member

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    Brunel wanted 60mph trains when only around 25 was available which was seen as far too visionary at the time. Your coal truck description is pointless. Compare that to the backward IET`s still doing 60mph through Cornwall and Devon on a rail network that hasn`t changed since his death and I ask, just how is that ridiculous in the extreme?
    But none are 15 minutes faster from those examples and the timetable comparison is flawed given that services don`t match. What widely acknowledges time savings? Certainly not the examples I`ve been shown. Perhaps your been counter buddies can help there.
    I never said it could.
    Cherry picking? "up to 15 minutes faster" the flavour of the month now is it? So, still isn`t true though is it. Quite how I`ve demonstrated that I`m not sure. Maybe if I was a member of the various rail bean counting organisations I could enlighten you further. I can`t even see 15 minute reductions anywhere, and please don`t post the pointless alterations again as the averages are negligible. I never said I wanted radical alterations to timing. Just showing how GWR have altered their timetable content to suit themselves rather than actually reduced times. They could equally have done this with HST operation and not IET`s which I would agree could be faster.
     
  25. swt_passenger

    swt_passenger Veteran Member

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    The 2015 GWR franchise stakeholder brief stated only the following “average improvements” for Devon and Cornwall:

    Station/up direction/down direction
    Exeter / 3 min / 5 min
    Paignton / 5 min / 6 min
    Plymouth / 5 min / 6 min
    Penzance / 8 min / 14 min

    I think this is what jimm is referring to in post #563, page 12 refers:
     

    Attached Files:

  26. HamworthyGoods

    HamworthyGoods Member

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    It’s quite easy to match up Penzance to Paddington trains as there are the same number and they all pretty much arrive at Paddington in the same time band.

    So the 06.15 from Penzance is 15 minutes quicker than the 05.41 it replaces, the 07.10 is also 15 minutes quicker than the 06.47 it replaces whilst the 08.15 is some 20 minutes quicker than the 07.41 it replaces.

    Then we get to the 09.15 which is 11 minutes slower than the 09.00 it replaces but the 10.15 is 8 minutes quicker than the 10.00 it replaces.

    The timetable is always a compromise with many routes competing for different aspirations, on the Western this involves satisfying demand from the big cities: Oxford; Plymouth; Exeter; Bristol; Cardiff; and so forth along with the other sizeable places such as Taunton, Truro, Bath, Swansea, Cheltenham, Reading and Worcester it’s always going to be a balance. Is it currently credible that Taunton the county town of Somerset has 90 minute gaps in departures from London - name another large town similar distance from London on a mainline that doesn’t receive an hourly service, this timetable fills those gaps as does it for Gloucester, Cheltenham and Worcester.

    As for the old chestnut of ‘wasting time’ at Plymouth splitting IETs, well the DfT were pretty clear as Clarence Yard has pointed out several times; 9 car IET for Cornwall and return the HSTs off-lease or have 5 car IET in Cornwall and a true half-hourly local service using small HSTs, they would not approve both.

    Timetables will elvolve and I’m sure the this one will be no different, we’ve not even given the 1/2 hourly service a chance to start yet without writing it off.
     
    Last edited: 22 Oct 2019
  27. jimm

    jimm Established Member

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    What do you want then? Every service saving five minutes between Bodmin and London? Or a 15-minute cut that was never on offer anyway?

    How many more times do you need to be told GWR did not say it was going to deliver a 15-minute cut in journey times on every single train between London and every single station in Cornwall?

    They also made clear four years ago what the future calling patterns through the region (and on the Berks & Hants) would look like. I somehow doubt you want GWR to reinstate the Cornish services going all the way round via Bristol, or the diversions off the main line to call at Westbury.

    In the absence of any major infrastructure changes west of Reading - which are the only thing that will ever deliver big cuts in journey times (unless you want the Cornish services to run non-stop both ways between Paddington and Plymouth) - I have no idea what it was you were expecting. Despite some people's constant demands for ever-faster services, plenty of passengers prefer a realistic, robust and reliable timetable that gets them where they want to go at the advertised time.

    If you don't want to recognise that there will be 15 or even 20-minute reductions in end-to-end times on a series of services between London and Penzance, that's your problem. And stop trying to tell everyone else that we can't compare certain services from December with existing ones, when you then proceed to do just that yourself at Bodmin.

    It is indeed the document I meant. Thanks for tracking it down.
     
  28. Wilts Wanderer

    Wilts Wanderer Established Member

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    It is worth remembering that the railway business has long known that Plymouth to London journeys carry some business traffic, but predominantly more leisure traffic. Cornwall to London is even more skewed in favour of leisure travelers.

    And what do leisure travelers prefer? Cheap tickets and seat availablility, before faster journeys. Business travel wants speed improvements over other considerations, but are in the minority here.

    Therefore a new timetable which prioritises capacity i.e. more train services, is the right move. And this is what the new timetable does.
     
  29. JN114

    JN114 Established Member

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    Hear hear
     
  30. Master29

    Master29 Established Member

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    And once again I never said I was bothered one way or another about all trains being faster services.
    The faster times you point out could equally be achieved by HST`s. Nothing to do with faster trains which I admitted the 802`s are on acceleration. As for old timetables via Bristol that is irrelevant.
    I was expecting a decent Royal Duchy and Cornish Riviera service which we don`t have anymore. Those reductions you mention are simply just GWR moving goalposts.
     

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