MP launches campaign against proposed TPE changes

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aformeruser

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A CAMPAIGN is set to be launched to save a direct train service from South Cumbria to Manchester.

Cumbria Better Connected will be launched tomorrow by Barrow and Furness MP John Woodcock in a bid to protect the under-threat direct train service between Barrow and Manchester Airport.

Mr Woodcock, a shadow transport minister, will kick-start the campaign with a tour of railway stations in the region, collecting signatures from commuters and residents on his journey.

Mr Woodcock will be joined by representatives from local business, rail users and councillors and at Grange station, Westmorland and Lonsdale MP Tim Farron will join the journey.

In the draft timetable for 2014, First TransPennine Express is proposing removing more than half of the through services which link Barrow, Ulverston, Grange and Arnside with Manchester and its airport, with no services from the city until the late afternoon and no trains to Manchester in the afternoon or early evening. The direct service is also threatened with complete removal from 2015 when the TransPennine franchise is re-let following electrification of parts of the network.

Mr Woodcock said: “The through services to Manchester and the airport provide an essential link to the economic centre of the North West. The train service helps to secure jobs, investment and economic growth.

“It is essential to the tourism industry and provides local people with access to employment, training and leisure opportunities. When I met with local businesses and organisations to discuss the threat to these trains, they were unanimous in opposing cuts to these services.

“I welcome the electrification of parts of the TransPennine network, but there is no reason why South Cumbria should see a worse service because of it.

“I’m calling on FTPE to reconsider the cuts it is proposing in 2014, and I’m calling on government ministers to guarantee the through service will be part of the new franchise agreement in 2015. I hope people from across South Cumbria will show their support by signing the petition.”

First TransPennine Express has said the timetable is only a draft and has invited people to comment on the plan.

Mr Farron said: “I look forward to joining John and campaigners tomorrow lunchtime and launching a cross-party campaign to protect a vital service for our community.

“The Furness Line is as important as the Lakes Line and they both play a vital part in boosting tourism. I know many residents back the campaign and we will work together to protect the frequency of the service.”

The group will be collecting signatures at Barrow train station tomorrow between 9.45am and 10.10am, at Ulverston station from 10.40am until 11.30am and at Grange station between noon and 12.30pm. The petition can also be signed online at www.johnwoodcock.org.

http://www.nwemail.co.uk/news/campa...ness-to-manchester-1.967486?referrerPath=home
 
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HSTEd

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Hhhm, on one hand through services are very important in encouraging people to use the network, but on the other they are very expensive in terms of operating lots of short trains rather than fewer longer ones.

Perhaps they could merge the Manchester Airport-Scotland trains with the Manchester-Bournemouth XC trains and discontinue the Birmingham-Scotland Pendos......
Would probably require eVoyagers though.
 

radamfi

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Just provide good connections at Lancaster. That is standard procedure in the most advanced railway countries like Switzerland.
 

The Snap

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Just provide good connections at Lancaster. That is standard procedure in the most advanced railway countries like Switzerland.

Quite.

Keeping the service running beyond 2015 when the majority of the route is electrified will be counter productive. Assuming the section from Lancaster to Barrow isn’t electrified (and I don't think it's down to be?), you'd be running diesel trains from Manchester to Barrow mostly under wires. The whole point of the electrification programme is to reduce the need for diesel trains and run more efficient electric ones.

Fast, frequent and timely connections from Lancaster would be much more appropriate.
 

WestCoast

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Just provide good connections at Lancaster. That is standard procedure in the most advanced railway countries like Switzerland.

As long as the emphasis is on good connections, where a cross/near platform interchange is provided and every effort is made to hold a service in the event of a delay. That's harder to achieve in the UK with close performance management not necessarily focused on what suits passengers, especially if the connection is between two different TOCs.

Even in the supposed "advanced railway countries", they do try to offer strategic regional services (e.g direct regional routes that have journey times well in excess of 2 hours) to try and cater for strong flows without imposing connections on passengers. I don't think it's terribly unreasonable to expect direct services from South Cumbria to the regional economic hub at Manchester.

The connection point doesn't tend to be the end of an electrified route either, it's should be a demand boundary (i.e. where a strong flow tails off).
 
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HSTEd

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Quite.

Keeping the service running beyond 2015 when the majority of the route is electrified will be counter productive. Assuming the section from Lancaster to Barrow isn’t electrified (and I don't think it's down to be?), you'd be running diesel trains from Manchester to Barrow mostly under wires. The whole point of the electrification programme is to reduce the need for diesel trains and run more efficient electric ones.

Fast, frequent and timely connections from Lancaster would be much more appropriate.

SNCF apparently don't agree, since they are now ordering new bi-mode units en-masse, which is not consistant with the idea of breaking up through trains in favour of "better connections" at the ends of electrification.

Once you start breaking journeys for operational convenience reasons where do you stop? Perhaps we could break the SW-NE XC services at Leeds once the electrification between Leeds and York is completed?
Or break the Cornwall trains at Bristol or Plymouth once IEP is arrived to remove the need for HSTs to be retained on that route.
 

aformeruser

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Keeping the service running beyond 2015 when the majority of the route is electrified will be counter productive. Assuming the section from Lancaster to Barrow isn’t electrified (and I don't think it's down to be?), you'd be running diesel trains from Manchester to Barrow mostly under wires. The whole point of the electrification programme is to reduce the need for diesel trains and run more efficient electric ones.

The plan is to reduce it to effectively a parliamentary from May 2014, with the possibly of the next franchise not running any through services starting in 2015. Electrification of Manchester-Bolton-Preston won't be completed by 2015. TPE are planning to transfer existing stock on to North TPE well ahead of electrification schemes being complete. There is another more serious issue in that Bolton may lose capacity in the short term, with many services currently overcrowded.

Before deciding where to split any services ticket sales information needs to be scrutinised. It's all very well saying passengers can change but it's likely many to/from other towns in Cumbria are already changing with the existing through service, so they will have to change an additional time with the split.

Holding connections won't work with TOCs penalised for late running and holding it for 30 people to not miss their connection may mean 50 other people miss another connection as a result of the train being held.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
SNCF apparently don't agree, since they are now ordering new bi-mode units en-masse, which is not consistant with the idea of breaking up through trains in favour of "better connections" at the ends of electrification.

Which would work well for the TPE Cumbria and Scarborough services, which aren't set to be included fully in electrification schemes. Plus it's possible the future franchise holder will do like Virgin and refuse to have a fully electric fleet for TPE unless diversionary routes are electrified.

Once you start breaking journeys for operational convenience reasons where do you stop? Perhaps we could break the SW-NE XC services at Leeds once the electrification between Leeds and York is completed?
Or break the Cornwall trains at Bristol or Plymouth once IEP is arrived to remove the need for HSTs to be retained on that route.

Quite.
 
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323235

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I'm in favour of this happening since 350s obviously won't be able to couple to 185s and the DMU's are needed elsewhere but want a strong standard pattern service from Lancaster-Barrow and the extension of Oxenholme-Winderemere services to Preston or Lancaster to give better connectivity to Virgin Trains services.
 

radamfi

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As long as the emphasis is on good connections, where a cross/near platform interchange is provided and every effort is made to hold a service in the event of a delay.

You shouldn't need to explain that - it should be a given that connections will be good, convenient and respected. But this is the UK, so it needs to be clarified.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Holding connections won't work with TOCs penalised for late running and holding it for 30 people to not miss their connection may mean 50 other people miss another connection as a result of the train being held.

That's just the British mentality. The argument about other passengers missing their connection further along the route is always the excuse put forward by the proponents of those who oppose ANY connection being held. Just see what happens in the advanced railway countries. Obviously not EVERY connection is held, but common sense is applied. In Switzerland, people don't look at the journey planner and say, "Oh no, the website is telling me to change. I am scared that the connection won't wait. So I'd better go by car instead."

Obviously the penalty regime needs to be changed, that's obvious. The fact that it even exists today speaks volumes about what this country knows about how to run a decent public transport service.
 

WatcherZero

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TPE have already said their taking the response onboard and are considering 4-5 direct services a day remaining to barrow (likely peaks). Weirdly the most vocal campaigners to keep the Manchester Airport-Windermere directs are all coming from Carlisle? I guess it must be a connection their making, but then if their making a connection they wouldnt be any worse off with a shuttle instead.

Bolton line simply having a bi-hourly or hourly service to Blackburn (much more crowded than services to Preston) would maintain the Manchester capacity while naturally a much greater benefit would come from reducing congestion on existing services from less Wigan/Scotland passengers on their commuter line.
 

aformeruser

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TPE have already said their taking the response onboard and are considering 4-5 direct services a day remaining to barrow (likely peaks).

4 northbound and 4 southbound Manchester services via Chorley and an additional northbound service via Wigan. One service each way won't continue to the Airport with a southbound service going to Victoria and a northbound service starting at Piccadilly.

However, it is effectively half the number of through services which is the MP's complaint.

Weirdly the most vocal campaigners to keep the Manchester Airport-Windermere directs are all coming from Carlisle? I guess it must be a connection their making, but then if their making a connection they wouldnt be any worse off with a shuttle instead.

Maybe their logic is the Scottish services are fuller than the Windermere services so having a Windermere service gives them a chance of getting a Manchester/Airport service that they can actually get a seat on.
 
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Clip

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Just provide good connections at Lancaster. That is standard procedure in the most advanced railway countries like Switzerland.

I didnt know you could get connections for Swiss trains at Lancaster ;)
 

cuccir

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One of the problems is that the majority of current Lancaster-Barrow trains are old Northern rail units, with no options for advance tickets, and which can often be overcrowded, particularly in summer. This puts the local population off the idea of a Lancaster-Barrow service, because they expect that they'll get more of the same.

A fast and efficient connecting service, with a handful of through trains at key times should be adequate, but as has been said before, the devil is in the detail.

An alternative that I'd personally love to see (and have mentioned on here before!) is diversion of (say) 3 of the York-Blackpool trains to Barrow. It would improve connections from Lancaster, South Cumbria and West Cumbria to Yorkshire, the Midlands and the North-East, and would act as compensation for the lost trains to Manchester Airport, which does make good sense once electrification is complete.
 

HSTEd

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Is there any particular reason you could not have a diesel unit that could multiple work with EMUs?
You could run a through train while still getting some of the benefits of the EMU operation, and provide the same number of trains to the destinations with fewer paths.
 

aformeruser

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Is there any particular reason you could not have a diesel unit that could multiple work with EMUs?
You could run a through train while still getting some of the benefits of the EMU operation, and provide the same number of trains to the destinations with fewer paths.

I think it can only be done on an emergency basis due the fact the combination wouldn't have much power e.g. 171 and a Southern EMU.
 

HSTEd

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I think it can only be done on an emergency basis due the fact the combination wouldn't have much power e.g. 171 and a Southern EMU.

Well a properly rigged diesel unit could provide all the power it would normally have in a formation with the EMU.....

Driver of the train sets the correct notch and the diesels on the train are controlled by the computer to produce the requested amount of power.
Some sort of ED Electrostar might be better though...... replace the hydraulic transmission with an electric one using the existing motor bogies on a modified Turbostar bodyshell.
 

aformeruser

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Well a properly rigged diesel unit could provide all the power it would normally have in a formation with the EMU.....

Driver of the train sets the correct notch and the diesels on the train are controlled by the computer to produce the requested amount of power.

I knew you could do that with a DEMU and an EMU but I didn't know you could with a DMU and an EMU.
 

HSTEd

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I knew you could do that with a DEMU and an EMU but I didn't know you could with a DMU and an EMU.

Yeah, it has only become practical with the invention of microcontrollers though, a more practical solution might be to divert the Liverpool-Norwich to form the Barrow train since that would operate under diesel power anyway, and you could then have an additional Manchester-Airport Liverpool train which would be an EMU.
Overall its a net reduction in diesel operation.
 

PR1Berske

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I support this campaign

This forum is a muddle some times. You can't moan about McNulty and moan about cutting direct services from cities to rural communities at the same time.
 

atillathehunn

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Surely there's no particular reason an EMU and a DMU couldn't run together from Manchester to Preston?
It would possibly take some work but could be done? I'm sure I read somewhere that the 142s and the 150s used to be able to run in multiple when the pacers had the automatic gear boxes in them? That would require a similar level of engine management.

A slightly hypothetical and possibly stupid question given that the 185s are diesel hydraulic and not diesel electric, but could an EMU connect to a diesel hydraulic and be powered entirely by pantograph in the EMU?
 

HSTEd

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A slightly hypothetical and possibly stupid question given that the 185s are diesel hydraulic and not diesel electric, but could an EMU connect to a diesel hydraulic and be powered entirely by pantograph in the EMU?

Unfortunately no, I don't think the 185 could even accept ETS from the EMU so would need to keep an engine running the entire time.

Could always build 4REP-power level EMUs and drag the diesel unit around. Would need a three or four coach EMU with ~3000-4000hp.
 

aformeruser

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I'm sure I read somewhere that the 142s and the 150s used to be able to run in multiple when the pacers had the automatic gear boxes in them? That would require a similar level of engine management.

BR aimed to have every diesel unit compatible with every other diesel unit and every electric unit compatible with every other electric unit and generally speaking they did no problems with 380s not being compatible with 350s or similar.

Northern operate 142+150 combinations on a daily basis now and 142+156 and 144+158 combinations do happen.
 

MidnightFlyer

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I can't check at the moment, but I think p1 3-car and p2 5-car or thereabouts. Trains could also use p5 I think, which is long enough to hold a Pendolino, though it would be more inconvenient than the bays.
 

ainsworth74

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Unfortunately no, I don't think the 185 could even accept ETS from the EMU so would need to keep an engine running the entire time.

Correct, there is no way for ETS to be supplied through the auto-coupler as this supplies only the physical coupling, brake pipe and control electronics. There is no way to supply power on the level that ETS would need.
 
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