How important is the ECML?

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by cactustwirly, 11 Jul 2019.

  1. pitdiver

    pitdiver Member

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    Of course the ECML is important. It always was and always will be. Don't forget it's where Sir Nigel ran his locomotives. Forget a certain Bill Stanier.
    .
     
  2. NoMorePacers

    NoMorePacers Member

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    And until HS1 opened, the highest speed railway line in this country.
     
  3. DarloRich

    DarloRich Veteran Member

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    Dont be silly. It was on a 5 pound note.
     
  4. mikeg

    mikeg Member

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    As an East coaster myself I'm reluctant to say it but the WCML is probably slightly more important. That said the ECML is by no means overhyped and the fact it serves Leeds, the busiest station outside of London says a lot.
     
  5. ohgoditsjames

    ohgoditsjames Member

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    Sheffield has nothing? Other than the amazing and thriving Kelham Island, great selection of pubs, real ale, independent breweries, the best railway station pub in the country, the Peak District, amazing independent coffee shops, most trees and green spaces per capita, growing creative scene, excellent public realm, tons of history on the steel industry (you know since it was the countries heartland for the steel industry).

    I live just outside of Leeds now, other than great shopping I really don’t get the fuss. York however... York is beautiful and my favourite place to visit.
     
    Last edited: 11 Jul 2019
  6. Bromley boy

    Bromley boy Established Member

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    Only kidding - I’m disappointed - I expected much more of a broadside :D.

    On a serious note, it’s a shame there doesn’t seem to be much in Darlington to commemorate its “first railway” status - “Head of Steam” got quite a poor write up on here a few years back.

    In your opinion, would it justify a detour from a day trip to the (nearby) Shildon museum? It’s within striking distance.

    (Apologies if OT for the thread, although I’ll be using the ECML to get there!).
     
  7. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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    Along with the GWML (and the WCML?) :rolleyes:
    The MML also has 125mph speeds
     
  8. DarloRich

    DarloRich Veteran Member

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    You could do both in the day easily. Head of steam is interesting but is really struggling for funding. It is only a small museum so wont take long. It has it's own station as well.

    I am not at home so cant link any of my pictures so you can get a sense of the place.
     
  9. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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    The MML is nothing like the Chiltern Mainline, it's a proper 125mph Intercity line.
    Doncaster has nothing they don't even make trains there, only repaint clapped out old ones!
     
  10. hexagon789

    hexagon789 Established Member

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    In terms of how many major places it serves. It is the primary Anglo-Scottish route for a start, as well as serving the important cities of Leeds, York and Newcastle.
     
  11. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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    I think the primary Anglo Scottish route is now the WCML.
    Leeds and Newcastle yes, but York? It's a nice city but, not one I'd class as major.
    The GWML is the main Anglo Welsh route, and serves the major cities of Bristol, Cardiff, Oxford and Swansea, plus the Naval city of Plymouth.
    The MML serves the East Midlands and Sheffield which have a greater population than Newcastle, Edinburgh and York
     
  12. NoMorePacers

    NoMorePacers Member

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    Only tilting trains can do 125mph on the WCML, which is only 2 classes of train - the MML only became 125mph in about 2013-14, after HS1 opened - and both it and the GWML have shorter sections of 125mph than the ECML.
     
  13. hexagon789

    hexagon789 Established Member

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    Not in my mind. Edinburgh is more important than Glasgow and Edinburgh is far more readily reached from King's Cross via the ECML.

    I concede the WCML does serve more of the important Midlands cities of course - Birmingham, Manchester and Liverpool but I've decided trying to quantify importance in those terms doesn't really work so I'll scratch that previous notion.
     
  14. class26

    class26 Member

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    Leeds is NOT the busiest station outside London. That is Birmingham New Street (6th busiest station in the UK but first outside London). New Street has 43 million a year , just behind Euston. Leeds is 12th busiest (31 million) and Piccadily 16th busiest (27 million) for the record.
    Those are 2018 figures.
     
  15. Bromley boy

    Bromley boy Established Member

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    Ta.

    Will keep it in mind.
     
  16. johnnychips

    johnnychips Established Member

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    Get it right...

    It's Doncaster that has the hardly-used airport. Sheffield hasn't got one.
     
  17. Starmill

    Starmill Events Co-ordinator

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    Which airport is accessed from Sheffield station?
     
  18. ainsworth74

    ainsworth74 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Depends where you're going in Scotland. Kings Cross to Edinburgh is four hours twenty minutes whilst Euston to Glasgow is four hours thirty. Meanwhile Euston to Edinburgh is five hours and forty minutes. So it's a no-brainer to go via the ECML if you want Edinburgh or many places that you change at Edinburgh to get to. I can happily concede that the WCML is more important when it comes to Anglo-Scot traffic than it used to be prior to the West Coast Route Modernisation but the primary route? I don't think so. Both are important.

    Interesting choice there you've used! Just what do you class as the "East Midlands" that's potentially a huge area you've chosen (with no definition of what you're actually including) and then just picked three cities to represent the ECML! How about we include Leeds? Or Doncaster? Or Teesside? Or Grantham? Or Durham? Or Tyneside more generally than just Newcastle?
     
  19. Glenn1969

    Glenn1969 Member

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    Glasgow Centrral is also busier than Leeds
     
  20. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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    Fair enough, but I'd say nowadays, Glasgow is the more important city.

    By East Midlands, I mean't the 3 cities; Leicester, Nottingham, Derby which have a large population
     
  21. hexagon789

    hexagon789 Established Member

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    The ECML remains the UK's fastest mainline excluding HS1. It has more 125mph track than any other.
     
  22. hexagon789

    hexagon789 Established Member

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    As a Glaswegian and a Scot I have to disagree, Edinburgh is the more important city, certainly politically, financially and otherwise.
     
    Last edited: 11 Jul 2019
  23. Bald Rick

    Bald Rick Established Member

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    £££. A lot more people, and the difference in average fares isn’t actually that much.
     
  24. mmh

    mmh Established Member

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    Can we not leave talk of the attractions or otherwise of towns to the currently running "Nice Towns" and "Bad Towns" threads please?
     
  25. ainsworth74

    ainsworth74 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Not quite sure how the Scots would feel being reduced to one city...

    Okay well if I limit myself to four cities (Leeds, Newcastle, Edinburgh and York) I come up with a population of around 5.28m people which compares to your four choices of 5.56m. Considering that I could quite legitimately throw in Bradford (0.54m), Hull (0.57m), Teesside (0.67m) as well it isn't quite as cut and dry as you're trying to make out.
     
  26. hexagon789

    hexagon789 Established Member

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    Out of 7 ;)

    But Edinburgh is more important, just saying... :lol:
     
  27. Bromley boy

    Bromley boy Established Member

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    Some interesting figures in the below article

    https://www.globalrailwayreview.com...avelling-scotland-london-via-rail-rather-air/

    So the ECML is more competitive against air travel than the WCML.

    Also interesting to note that as of 2017, more people fly between London and Scotland than take the train.

    Perhaps not surprising as 4+ hour journeys aren’t really competitive with flying for “out and back in a day” type business trips.

    No doubt leisure travellers often find flying cheaper than travelling by train.
     
  28. Senex

    Senex Established Member

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    Yet the station statistics consistently shew that York deals with significantly more passengers than Newcastle.

    How are we defining the ECML and the WCML here? Does the Leeds branch count as part of the ECML, or is it just a branch? Do the Birmingham/Wolverhampton, Stoke, Manchester, Chester, and Liverpool branches count as part of the WCML, or are they too just branches? We have managed to create two main lines to the north which happily miss most of the major English centres, and we are about to do the same with HS2. The whole set-up is fine for "London and ..." train-services, but not good at all (in route-quality and speed terms) for services from those provincial centres on their branches and the north.

    How many of its branches do we count as part of the GWML? What is the core main line now? London to Swansea?
     
  29. bramling

    bramling Established Member

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    Head of Steam is lovely, but it’s the sort of place where it helps to have done a bit of background reading first. The museum is very much dedicated to the S&D, so it helps to have swatted up on the subject matter first to know what one is looking at.

    As for Shildon, again a resounding yes. The museum itself personally I found a little dry, but Shildon as a whole is *very* well worth a visit, again to explore some of the relics in the wider town. There’s some suggested walking routes which are very well worth exploring. If this floats one’s boat Shildon could quite happily occupy a good day or even more.

    Finally, for completeness a swift half in the George & Dragon in Yarm should also be done.

    I can’t recommend this area enough, as you might gather! There’s plenty of railway relics, but unlike bandwagon stuff like the Flying Scotsman one has to know what one is looking for and where to look. Personally I find it more rewarding this way, and chances are when you stumble across something there won’t be hoards of people crawling all over it!
     
  30. bramling

    bramling Established Member

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    I wonder if there might be a generational thing to this. The WCML was very run down in the 90s, whilst by contrast GNER was well regarded. With old habits die hard and all that, I suspect some people of a certain generation who are not regular rail users would possibly still default to the ECML.

    Personally having found the IEP trains rather underwhelming I’ll probably be defaulting to the car in future for journeys to the north-east...
     

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