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Headcodes

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A Challenge

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How do I find headcodes? I see people referencing to them on the threads in this subforum and in 'The Transport Game (UK)' and was wondering what they are and how to find them for a service.

Also, how can I find timetables similar to TfL WTTs for TOCs as they seem to exist?
 
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Petermount

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How do I find headcodes? I see people referencing to them on the threads in this subforum and in 'The Transport Game (UK)' and was wondering what they are and how to find them for a service.

Also, how can I find timetables similar to TfL WTTs for TOCs as they seem to exist?

I run uktra.in & I get the headcodes & timestables from both Network Rail (daily) & NRE (daily & real time updates).
.
I'm actually finishing off a rewrite of the timetable engine so there will also be a rest api available for them soon.

Peter
 

swt_passenger

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How do I find headcodes? I see people referencing to them on the threads in this subforum and in 'The Transport Game (UK)' and was wondering what they are and how to find them for a service.

Also, how can I find timetables similar to TfL WTTs for TOCs as they seem to exist?

Network Rail make the WTTs available here, but I don't think they are divided up by TOC there's some sort of index section once you drill down through the pages:

http://www.networkrail.co.uk/browsedirectory.aspx?root=&dir=\Timetables\Working Timetable (WTT)&cd=2
 

RailAleFan

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You can look them up on my timetable pages;

https://live-departures.info/rail/timetable/

Go to a station, click on a service and in the bottom left hand corner of the service info you'll see in faint type, for example;

20313/P63008/1F30

In this case, 20313 is my own id, and from the BS (Basic Schedule) record, P63008 is the train_uid and 1F30 train_identity / headcode.
 

ValleyLines142

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I know this has been discussed to death, but I am still waiting for the day when we have a site that also lists unit allocations! I know TOPS/TRUST are only internally available but the day it gets released to the public domain will be the best day ever!

The closest I've got is a guy who lists daily allocations from Stafford, Carlisle and Doncaster, but even then that is when he has time to upload them!
 

Shaw S Hunter

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I know this has been discussed to death, but I am still waiting for the day when we have a site that also lists unit allocations! I know TOPS/TRUST are only internally available but the day it gets released to the public domain will be the best day ever!

Don't hold your breath! While there is certainly justification for outline formations or "seat maps" to be made available for public consumption in real-time the only people wanting actual train numbers are enthusiasts, ie a decidedly minority group. It might be possible to persuade the TOCs to make the information available for a price but something tells me that the price would be more than the vast majority of enthusiasts would be willing to actually pay. And in any case where's the fun in knowing exactly where every loco or unit is?!
 

trainmania100

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Freight locate shows vast majority of head codes both freight and passenger. It is available for a small fee.
 

headshot119

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Don't hold your breath! While there is certainly justification for outline formations or "seat maps" to be made available for public consumption in real-time the only people wanting actual train numbers are enthusiasts, ie a decidedly minority group. It might be possible to persuade the TOCs to make the information available for a price but something tells me that the price would be more than the vast majority of enthusiasts would be willing to actually pay. And in any case where's the fun in knowing exactly where every loco or unit is?!

I don't agree with this! Giving out formation data openly would be a massive step in letting people get on trains of a suitable length, and avoid short ones.
 

bb21

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Formation data should be made available to the public, but TRUST is not the answer, for a start, TRUST is often wrong, especially in disruption, when it is arguably more important for people to know which trains are likely to be busy.

Unit allocation will never be seen as worthy of additional effort, for the reason that very few normal passengers actually care about them, however depending on how formation data is extracted, should such a time come true one day, the powers that be might decide that it would be simpler to just release them together. Enthusiasts are still important customers. While it is not necessarily cost effective to satisfy their needs, there is no reason why any TOC would choose to be deliberately awkward, if the marginal cost is negligible.
 

RailAleFan

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Formation data should be made available to the public

Length is available in Darwin (public and "staff") but not yet widely populated. Sorry to keep plugging my site (it's a hobby, helps to keep my skills current!) but I've been working on a responsive front end to LDBSVWS that can be configured to show formation.

Scroll down to Preferences / Railway Technical, enable "Show Train Formation", click Save and then go to a station - somewhere served by Southern / Thameslink should show formation for most services - try Gatwick Airport (GTW)...

https://live-departures.info/rail/ldbsvws/

Edit: also shows headcode OP
 
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Llanigraham

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The only people who care what the headcode, unit number, classification is are "spotters". I bet 99% of passengers don't care, wouldn't understand, and don't have access to the information anyway.
Total waste of time!
 

150219

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Length is available in Darwin (public and "staff") but not yet widely populated.

Only the 'booked' length, generally not anything that has been amended during disruption, short term plans or very short term plans.
 

Condor7

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You can look them up on my timetable pages;

https://live-departures.info/rail/timetable/

Go to a station, click on a service and in the bottom left hand corner of the service info you'll see in faint type, for example;

20313/P63008/1F30

In this case, 20313 is my own id, and from the BS (Basic Schedule) record, P63008 is the train_uid and 1F30 train_identity / headcode.

I am very impressed with your site, I have not come across this before. Saved to favourites now. :D
 

RailAleFan

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I am very impressed with your site, I have not come across this before. Saved to favourites now. :D

Thanks!

I've just completed a mash-up of the Train Describer feed with "staff" Darwin so berth level train movements is now a display option for Live Departures and Arrivals

https://live-departures.info/rail/ldbsvws/

(scroll down to Preferences/Railway Technical, enable "Show berth level train movements between TIPLOCs", Save, then go to a station)
 
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Don't hold your breath! While there is certainly justification for outline formations or "seat maps" to be made available for public consumption in real-time the only people wanting actual train numbers are enthusiasts, ie a decidedly minority group. It might be possible to persuade the TOCs to make the information available for a price but something tells me that the price would be more than the vast majority of enthusiasts would be willing to actually pay. And in any case where's the fun in knowing exactly where every loco or unit is?!

or terrorists ...

there are various anoraks who spot Ambulances / fire appliances and the like and who bombard the services with FoI requests requesting huge levels of detail aobut the fleet and 99.9999999999999999% of the time they are unsatisifed with the answers released on the advice of the Home Office - becasue it doesn;t give fleet no, reg no, location ...
 

bramling

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The only people who care what the headcode, unit number, classification is are "spotters". I bet 99% of passengers don't care, wouldn't understand, and don't have access to the information anyway.
Total waste of time!

You'd be surprised how many commuter types will choose which train they catch based on what they know may turn up.

On my local line, for example, there are most definitely commuters who have come to know which trains are booked for class 365, avoiding the class 317s/321s. Likewise many commuters are keen to know length information, both for choosing which service to use or avoid, and also as a guide to knowing where to stand on the platform. Particularly in the London area, there are locations where at peak times little details like knowing the type of stock likely to turn up on a given service, and therefore the precise spot where the doors should stop, can make the difference between getting a seat or not.

As for headcodes, again you'll find that there are quite a few displays at stations which show the location/headcode of trains. King's Cross has a number of these. They're primarily used for staff, but are placed in public areas, and are *very* useful for finding one's way to the train without having to wait for it to be announced, or for locating the incoming service. Plenty of non-enthusiasts use these.

The information may not be understood by leisure daytripper types, but I can guarantee a surprising proportion of non-enthusiast commuters would have some idea what the information meant, and would make some use of it.
 
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Llanigraham

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Wow, so a few people might want to know, but still not the majority!
Total waste of time and money!
 

bb21

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Wow, so a few people might want to know, but still not the majority!
Total waste of time and money!

Look at it a different way. It is not just the customers who stand to gain from making certain information available. The TOCs can potentially benefit a great deal too from such a move.
 

A Challenge

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You'd be surprised how many commuter types will choose which train they catch based on what they know may turn up.

On my local line, for example, there are most definitely commuters who have come to know which trains are booked for class 365, avoiding the class 317s/321s. Likewise many commuters are keen to know length information, both for choosing which service to use or avoid, and also as a guide to knowing where to stand on the platform. Particularly in the London area, there are locations where at peak times little details like knowing the type of stock likely to turn up on a given service, and therefore the precise spot where the doors should stop, can make the difference between getting a seat or not.

As for headcodes, again you'll find that there are quite a few displays at stations which show the location/headcode of trains. King's Cross has a number of these. They're primarily used for staff, but are placed in public areas, and are *very* useful for finding one's way to the train without having to wait for it to be announced, or for locating the incoming service. Plenty of non-enthusiasts use these.

The information may not be understood by leisure daytripper types, but I can guarantee a surprising proportion of non-enthusiast commuters would have some idea what the information meant, and would make some use of it.
The train that I sometimes get into London seems to always be 5 coaches - but it is the 08:45 ex Portsmouth Harbour, arriving at 10:27 at London Waterloo - but on the way home knowing where a train will depart from before it is announced means I can wait at the ticket barriers for it to come up on the board on the platform as one last check. Do you know if there are any of these at London Waterloo? - they would be very useful!

Also, when I travelled home on the 18:18 London Waterloo to Haslemere, it was late, and so we tried to guess the carriage door position from the train in the opposite (across the rails) platform, we failed and had to go to the next coach to get a seat, and so knowing the door position would have helped - though we didn't know what class it would be anyway!
 
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