Intercity 250

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HSTEd

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Well, since I've started thinking about that project recently I've become very intrigued as to what the project was plannign to actually do beyond new rolling stock and incremental upgrades.

I don't know how much work was actually done on the project but were there any concept timetables released with the headline target travel times, or any mockup photos beyond that one artist's impression of the Cl93 we see everywhere?

Additionally, considering the cost (supposedly a budget of ~£750m, which is small even compared to the pre runaway Railtrack budget for the WCRM) does this mean that the project was actually not going to do much beyond upgrade the power supply and buy new faster accelerating trains, or is that simply an indictment of how much more the railways cost now?
 
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sprinterguy

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driver9000

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Parts of the 250 project are covered in a book titled The Intercity Story (1994). I have used that as reference.

The IC250 was fully designed and specified to be capable of 160mph. Approval was given in December 1990 for tender and invitations to bid sent out in March 1991. Permission to purchase 30 sets was sent to the board in December 1991. With the recession eating into Intercity's profits and privatisation looming over the horizon the project was abandoned.

Also detailed in the book are 2 diagrams which showed BR proposals for WCML upgrading using London Euston-Manchester Piccadilly as a base. Options explored were:
1. Do nothing and keep 2h30 running time Euston-Piccadilly
2. Accelerate and improve reliability of existing 110mph stock and reduce time to 2h10
3. Introduce new trains capable of 140mph with easing of some curves to achieve 2hr running time.
4. Renew or upgrade infrastructure for 140-160mph running with minor realignment to remove some speed restrictions to achieve 1hr50 running time.
5. Build a new high speed line from around Crewe to within 30 miles of London to achieve 1h35 running time.

A map dated 1989 shows a 186mph (300kmh) line which appears to come out of Paddington with 140mph to a place named as Seer Green then 186mph to Shildon with a line from the WCML diverging at Northurch joining the HS line at Fleet Marston. With a few areas marked as 140mph, the line was 186mph to Sandbach where it became 140mph before the line ended at Chelford. The line is shown to the west of the WCML to Nuneaton where it then goes to the east before becoming overlaid to the WCML north of Stafford. A second proposal map also shows 186mph railway but this time concentrated on the WCML north of Watford. From Nuneaton the line follows proposal 1, it is south of Nuneaton where the differences in the two proposals lie. The new line avoids Rugby with parts of the WCML upgraded to 140-186mph running with sections of new line avoiding Leighton Buzzard and Wolverton. In the end Intercity deemed Proposal 1 was not cost effective and proposal 2 didn't get much further either.

Sorry for my descriptions having to be words, my scanner is demic so I can't upload an image of the maps.
 
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LE Greys

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Parts of the 250 project are covered in a book titled The Intercity Story (1994). I have used that as reference.

The IC250 was fully designed and specified to be capable of 160mph. Approval was given in December 1990 for tender and invitations to bid sent out in March 1991. Permission to purchase 30 sets was sent to the board in December 1991. With the recession eating into Intercity's profits and privatisation looming over the horizon the project was abandoned.

Also detailed in the book are 2 diagrams which showed BR proposals for WCML upgrading using London Euston-Manchester Piccadilly as a base. Options explored were:
1. Do nothing and keep 2h30 running time Euston-Piccadilly
2. Accelerate and improve reliability of existing 110mph stock and reduce time to 2h10
3. Introduce new trains capable of 140mph with easing of some curves to achieve 2hr running time.
4. Renew or upgrade infrastructure for 140-160mph running with minor realignment to remove some speed restrictions to achieve 1hr50 running time.
5. Build a new high speed line from around Crewe to within 30 miles of London to achieve 1h35 running time.

A map dated 1989 shows a 186mph (300kmh) line which appears to come out of Paddington with 140mph to a place named as Seer Green then 186mph to Shildon with a line from the WCML diverging at Northurch joining the HS line at Fleet Marston. With a few areas marked as 140mph, the line was 186mph to Sandbach where it became 140mph before the line ended at Chelford. The line is shown to the west of the WCML to Nuneaton where it then goes to the east before becoming overlaid to the WCML north of Stafford. A second proposal map also shows 186mph railway but this time concentrated on the WCML north of Watford. From Nuneaton the line follows proposal 1, it is south of Nuneaton where the differences in the two proposals lie. The new line avoids Rugby with parts of the WCML upgraded to 140-186mph running with sections of new line avoiding Leighton Buzzard and Wolverton. In the end Intercity deemed Proposal 1 was not cost effective and proposal 2 didn't get much further either.

Sorry for my descriptions having to be words, my scanner is demic so I can't upload an image of the maps.
Was the book written by John Prideux? If so, Stevenage Library has a copy and I've read it.

The route itself seems fairly close to HS2, although I think that goes further north in the Chilterns and somewhat further west. It would be interesting to overlay the two, just for comparison. As for IC250, it sounds like a good idea and had some potential. We might have been looking at introduction of it, or possibly IC225-T, at about the same time the Pendys were introduced, with possibly a Great Western electrification coming up, followed by more IC250s on the East Coast and a cascade of 225s to the Midland. Sounds like enough work to keep BR going well into the 21st Century, depending on investment.
 

driver9000

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Was the book written by John Prideux? If so, Stevenage Library has a copy and I've read it.
Edited by Mike Vincent and Chris Green and written "by a team of well known railway writers and Intercity managers". The book was published by Oxford Publishing Company.
 

HSTEd

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Was the book written by John Prideux? If so, Stevenage Library has a copy and I've read it.

The route itself seems fairly close to HS2, although I think that goes further north in the Chilterns and somewhat further west. It would be interesting to overlay the two, just for comparison. As for IC250, it sounds like a good idea and had some potential. We might have been looking at introduction of it, or possibly IC225-T, at about the same time the Pendys were introduced, with possibly a Great Western electrification coming up, followed by more IC250s on the East Coast and a cascade of 225s to the Midland. Sounds like enough work to keep BR going well into the 21st Century, depending on investment.
Nah, unless the project ran into ridiculous amounts of trouble (even more than the actual WCRM, which wouldnt stop the actual stock introduction itself) it would probably have led to them being in service during the mid 90s, which leads to interesting knock on effects, especially if BB Mk3 equipment electrification continued into the mid 90s.
 
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