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MML into Kings Cross during engineering work

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Failed Unit

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How difficult would it be to run the following service during Engineering works on MML

Sheffield - Derby - Nottingham - Grantham - London Kings cross.

i assume the 222s are cleared (or could be without too much work) from their days will Hull trains. So I assume that the biggest challenge will be staff to do the ECML (pilots from Peterborough?)

Better than a bus?

journey planners tend to point passengers onto the EMR regional service from Chesterfield and Nottingham which can’t cope. I guess Sheffield are sent towards Doncaster. So this would certainly make for some happy MML passengers. (But may not be a good thing if Nottingham- Kings Cross is faster then the normal route)
 
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skyhigh

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Would there be platform space at King's Cross for the additional services?
 

JonathanH

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At a weekend I don’t see why not.
Kings Cross currently has reduced capacity. Moreover, the weekend timetable at Kings Cross isn't really that much less intensive than the weekday one.

Putting on additional capacity between Nottingham and Grantham or Peterborough might be a start for LNER (or Thameslink) connections.
 

Failed Unit

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Kings Cross currently has reduced capacity. Moreover, the weekend timetable at Kings Cross isn't really that much less intensive than the weekday one.

Putting on additional capacity between Nottingham and Grantham or Peterborough might be a start for LNER (or Thameslink) connections.
I didn‘t know that Kings Cross was going to have reduced capacity after the 8th June. I know it will have 1 less platform but I thought that the new layout would make it more flexible that the reduction won’t matter. Likewise the GTR peak services to Peterborough don’t run at the weekends. So a little surprised the pathing will be a problem in the future. The London - Cambridge service isn’t as platform hungry at the weekend.
 

whoosh

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I have a feeling this was looked for a certain stage of St Pancras getting rebuilt for Eurostar (which involved Midland Mainline initially using what are now the SouthEastern platforms to start with, before moving over to their current low numbered platforms). I seem to remember the fast Nottingham trains being mentioned as being looked into for going to Kings Cross, but it wasn't proceeded with as it would only have been for a matter of a few weeks at the most, and some other timetabling workaround was found instead.

Filed in the "not worth the effort" bin!
 

Bald Rick

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Once Kings Cross is done, it may well be possible, although probably only on a Saturday, and after the ECML timetable recast it would almost certainly have a convoluted path and be overtaken several times. The Sunday timetable on the ECML is just as busy as weekday.

And it doesn’t help the good folk of Leicester, and stations south thereof.
 

Failed Unit

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Once Kings Cross is done, it may well be possible, although probably only on a Saturday, and after the ECML timetable recast it would almost certainly have a convoluted path and be overtaken several times. The Sunday timetable on the ECML is just as busy as weekday.

And it doesn’t help the good folk of Leicester, and stations south thereof.
Where do they head now for interest to avoid the bus? Peterborough or Nuneaton?

Nuneaton seems to show up most on my quick search.
 

Bald Rick

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Where do they head now for interest to avoid the bus? Peterborough or Nuneaton?

I presume so. But bus replacements are not that bad.

I recall the weekend of the bridge over the Trent being replaced at Newark. Self and Mrs BR were at York heading for London on a Sunday evening. One of the few through trains routed via Lincoln pulled in, next stop Kings Cross but was set down only; a rather officious Senior Conductor refused to let us on (with our first class passes) despite the front coach being half empty.

So we waited 20 minutes for the official route - train to Retford, change there for a replacement coach to Grantham, where another train would take us south. Relatively easy transfer at each end (we both had big bags). We were at Grantham a good 20 minutes before the connection train was due, and about 3 minutes before it arrived the HST that we had been denied boarding went through. 5 minutes later we are on our train, and arrived Kings Cross about 5 minutes after the HST. It really was no bother.
 
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Dr Hoo

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Diverting via Grantham obviously still leaves a lot of stuff un-covered - Derby, Leicester and all the 'local' stations.

With either four tracks or the Manton/Corby diversion available over the whole route a 'two track railway' is generally available. Some recent work for the new Brent Cross West station has seen diesel services switched onto the 'Hendon' goods lines.

For pre-planned work it will be rare that King's Cross would be much use.

Obviously there are more detailed alternatives with termination at West Hampstead or Kentish Town if St Pancras HL is unavailable.

From Corby, Kettering and Wellingborough a drive or bus to Northampton is the common expedient for unplanned disruption.
 

JonathanH

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I didn‘t know that Kings Cross was going to have reduced capacity after the 8th June. I know it will have 1 less platform but I thought that the new layout would make it more flexible. Likewise the GTR peak services to Peterborough don’t run at the weekends. So a little surprised the pathing will be a problem in the future.
Yes, I was more thinking about the situation this weekend rather than after 8 June.

However, the first problem would seem to be that the same path might not be available every hour. Looking at departures from Kings Cross on a Saturday
xx00 Scotland, first stop York
xx03 Leeds, first stop Peterborough
xx06 Lincoln / York, first stop Stevenage
xx09 This is where the Cambridge Thameslink from Brighton fits in
xx12 Ely
xx15 Path used by the Royston slow that stops at Welwyn North
xx18 Used by Grand Central at 1318
xx21 This is where the Peterborough Thameslink from Horsham fits in
xx27 Used by Grand Central at 1127, 1627, 1927
xx30 Scotland, first stop Peterborough
xx33 Leeds, first stop Stevenage
xx36 Used for Peterborough GN fasts at 1636, 1736, 1836 on Saturdays
xx39 This is where the Cambridge Thameslink from Brighton fits in
xx42 Kings Lynn
xx45 Path used by the Cambridge slow that stops at Welwyn North
xx48 Used by Hull Trains / Grand Central at 0948, 1048, 1148, 1448, 1648, 1748, 1948
xx51 This is where the Peterborough Thameslink from Horsham fits in
xx57 Used by Grand Central at 1957

xx18 perhaps looks like the best bet (and LNER use this during the weekday peak) but in the hour it is used, it seems that the Royston train needs to be perturbed slightly as the 1318 from Kings Cross needs to fit between the Royston and the Peterborough. The Norwich to Nottingham service effectively runs into Grantham behind the xx48 path from Kings Cross. East Coast Trains also has some 25 / 48 paths reserved and there is still some freight / charter paths on Saturdays. I think the missing xx24 / xx54 opportunity runs into problems with the pathing of the Peterborough Thameslink north of Huntingdon.

However, the other point to remember is that EMR still have to provide services on whatever part of the MML route that is still open so they may not be able to spare the resource to get a full hourly timetable into Kings Cross.

As a speculative idea which wouldn't work, I wonder about the prospect of an 810 hitching a lift on the back of a Hull Trains 802 from Grantham in the future. However, I can imagine the issues with that are losing the path at Grantham and the lack of permissive working approval., rendering the idea impossible.
 

Failed Unit

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The attachment of the unit does save a lot of problems. Such as the Lincoln in the hours it runs. But getting 2 operators to co-operate is probably harder then finding a path at the southern end of the ECML
 
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