How important is the ECML?

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

  1. Bromley boy

    Bromley boy Established Member

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    Thanks for this.

    It is a great part of the world and one I’m intending to properly tick off this summer.

    “Dry” sounds good to me! A great antidote to the “down with the kids” NRM :D.
     
  2. tigermoth37

    tigermoth37 New Member

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    The beeching report in 1965 "The Development of Major Railway Trunk Routes" mentioned the East Coast main line was to be closed north of Newcastle. I cant imagine this would be proposed now and also it is the most scenic part !
     
  3. bramling

    bramling Established Member

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    Go for it, you won’t be disappointed. There’s a book which goes into some detail on the western section of the S&D, and one of the books on the subject also has a map which lists all the remaining “features” to be seen along the whole route along with its branches.

    Whilst in the area, don’t forget the Causey Arch, and the railway walk from Consett to Stanhope is also worth doing, especially at the Stanhope end coming down the Crawleyside incline.

    (I could go on and on about this area!...)
     
  4. Starmill

    Starmill Events Co-ordinator

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    It's interesting to me how low down LNER are on this list.
     
  5. class26

    class26 Member

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    For accuracy Sheffield airport closed on April 30, 2008
     
  6. LNW-GW Joint

    LNW-GW Joint Veteran Member

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    Most of the above is related to passenger speeds and journey times.
    If you add freight the WCML wins hands down, as does the M1/M6/M74 versus the M1/A1.
    When HS2 reaches Yorkshire there will only be one route north - from Euston.

    If the railway wanted to, it could run WCML trains to Edinburgh in the same or less time than via the ECML.
    It chooses not to because of BR decisions after nationalisation (which also dictated that Sheffield and Nottingham are served from St Pancras).
    As things stand the WCML also has higher capacity than the ECML (mainly because of the 2-track section at Welwyn).
     
  7. Western Lord

    Western Lord Member

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    The ECML would provide the quickest routes to both Nottingham and Sheffield, but isn't allowed to, so you could argue that its potential has been suppressed. As for Euston-Edinburgh, it has never been a truly competitive route due to the curves and gradients of the WCML compared to the East Coast, and it can only be vaguely competitive with tilting trains which the ECML does not require.
     
  8. krus_aragon

    krus_aragon Established Member

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    I wouldn't go as far as saying never...
     
  9. Western Lord

    Western Lord Member

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    OK, then since trains started running at three figure speeds!
     
  10. KevinTurvey

    KevinTurvey Member

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    I wonder how has the demise of coal impacted on the ECML?

    Not being local to this area, do many coal trains still run, if at all. There always seemed to be lots around Doncaster.
     
  11. 221129

    221129 Established Member

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    The busiest station outside of London is New St...
     
  12. Mikey C

    Mikey C Established Member

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    The WCML is easily more important than the ECML, due to the number of major destinations served and the high frequencies

    That it was the first "Inter City" route to be modernised by BR (including all the new station buildings) and electrified is surely an indication of this.
     
  13. ohgoditsjames

    ohgoditsjames Member

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    Always wondered why it isn’t allowed, is it purely capacity? Once upon a time Sheffield went onto the ECML via Retford iirc
     
  14. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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    No, London to Grantham is about 1hr and 10 minutes from Kings Cross, and a non stop service from Grantham to Nottingham is 34 minutes.
    So exactly the same journey time as the MML, but then you're missing out Leicester in the process so I don't see what running via the ECML adds?

    Kings Cross to Doncaster is about 1hr 40, and it's a further 20 minutes to Sheffield, so again the same journey time, but you're missing out Derby.

    If Sheffield to Leeds had a proper high speed route, I actually think the MML would be just as fast as the ECML to Leeds, at the moment it's only about 15 minutes slower (if given optimal paths)
     
  15. Aictos

    Aictos On Moderation

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  16. Silver Cobra

    Silver Cobra Member

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    One other place of interest Sheffield has (particularly for me) is the National Videogame Museum ;) It used to be in Nottingham, but moved up to Sheffield last year.
     
  17. Darandio

    Darandio Established Member

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  18. sprunt

    sprunt Member

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    St Albans, Derby, Nottingham, Leicester, Sheffield, Leeds! :p

    Seriously though, it's a bit of a silly debate. The most important line at any given time is the one that gets you to where you want to go. The WCML, ECML, MML and SWML are all hugely important and if any of them are affected by any kind of incident there will be an impact on a huge number of people. They certainly shouldn't be competing for resources.
     
  19. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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  20. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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    Yes but based on that you can't definitely say that the MML isn't as important as the ECML, they both serve a similar amount of people.
    The MML would have been the main route to Leeds if it had been built as a proper mainline, as it was initially built as a series of secondary lines joined together, it's constrained by all of the curves.
    This is all slowly being put right, with upgrades to 125mph linespeed, upgrades at Derby and Market Harborough stations.
     
  21. LNW-GW Joint

    LNW-GW Joint Veteran Member

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    Manchester. ;)
     
  22. Old Yard Dog

    Old Yard Dog Member

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    Except the ECML makes little or no attempt to serve Bradford, Hull or Teesside (or Sunderland or Huddersfield or Grimsby), surrendering these large cities to open access operators. That's why its such a basket case.

    The WCML, on the other hand, has a number of different alignments and branches meaning it serves cities like Coventry, Wolverhampton, Liverpool, Chester and Stoke-on-Trent as well as Glasgow, Edinburgh, Birmingham and Manchester.
     
  23. Aictos

    Aictos On Moderation

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    Still has services from Sheffield..... Bus or Rail don’t matter
     
  24. s'land

    s'land Member

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    If the ECML done something similar with different high speed alignments taking in the the large northeast coastal towns/cities of Wearside (Sunderland) and Teesside (Middlesbrough) you'd be talking about a combined population of about one million people.
     
  25. londonmidland

    londonmidland Member

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    When it comes to the amount of freight transported, then the WCML wins every time, without a doubt.
     
  26. Western Lord

    Western Lord Member

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    If services from Kings Cross to Nottingham were provided, the line from Grantham to Nottingham (which is generally well aligned), could be upgraded to at lest 100 mph running and the journey would be less than 20 minutes. I imagine that the current low speeds on this line are to prevent Nottingham to Kings Cross with a change at Grantham being faster than the MML. Kings Cross to Sheffield would not be via Doncaster, but via Retford with the line from there to Sheffield upgraded for higher speeds. This, of course, was a through route at one time with a named train (The Master Cutler). Leicester and Derby would continue to be served by the MML.
     
  27. Railwaysceptic

    Railwaysceptic Member

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    It would add the possibility of Mansfield, that most neglected town with its population in excess of 100,000, having a direct service to Peterborough and London.
     
  28. Darandio

    Darandio Established Member

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    How are bus services from Sheffield to an airport in Doncaster any way relevant to the importance of the ECML?
     
  29. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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    Why does it matter?
    It's such a small Airport with a very limited number of flights, that no one is going to travel from London Kings Cross to travel to it.
    Not even people from Sheffield, when they can just as easily get a train to Manchester Airport
     
  30. Senex

    Senex Established Member

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    It's no worse in its origins than the series of lines joined together that form both the WCML and the ECML — it's just that in the years since Grouping much more money has been spent on those routes.
     

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