North Western Trains services to London

Discussion in 'Railway History & Nostalgia' started by faltskog36abba, 12 Oct 2017.

  1. faltskog36abba

    faltskog36abba Member

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    Back in 2001 I travelled on a 158 from Manchester Victoria to London Euston operated by North Western trains or first North Western. The train I travelled on was quite busy, I would like to know more information about this service and why it stopped running. I would also like to know if such a service could run again?. I'm sorry if I have posted this in the wrong section...Many thanks.
     
  2. jcollins

    jcollins Veteran Member

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    North Western ran them as open access services i.e. they were not required to run them as part of the franchise agreement and did so because they thought they would be profitable. Virgin Trains were unhappy about the competition and got enhanced protection rights meaning that it became harder for other operators to run services to London from the same stations or cities which Virgin operated London services from.
     
  3. ChiefPlanner

    ChiefPlanner Established Member

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    They were very much part of the Franchise Commitments - and it took a lot of effort to get them removed - FNW even had rights to run Holyhead to Euston , all part of an over-excited bid , which regrettably came to not much when the "core" business was under much stress...the fares were about £10 single for a trip to Euston for a month or so , then doubled , but the trains were pretty empty - even the Manchester Airport to Euston with class 322 units ....
     
  4. MatthewRead

    MatthewRead Member

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    Are you sure it was 2001 I read that service finished on 13th May 2000 it also used 309's and 322's on a Manchester Airport to Euston service.
     
  5. roversfan2001

    roversfan2001 Member

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    There was a separate service using 158s, running from Manchester Victoria (and I've seen sometimes from Rochdale).
     
  6. 61653 HTAFC

    61653 HTAFC Established Member

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    IIRC it was planned to order 180s to run Blackpool North/Holyhead to Euston if (a) the services had lasted long enough, and (b) the Alstom diesel units hadn't been so unreliable in the early years. The diesel service ran from Rochdale (with I think a portion from Blackpool which I think split/joined at Warrington BQ) but there's no way you'd get a path for a 90mph unit up the WCML now!
     
  7. Ianno87

    Ianno87 Established Member

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    All of Manchester Airport, Blackpool and Rochdale (via Victoria) were introduced in May 98. The first two ended in May 99 and I believe the Rochdale via Victoria service staggered on to May 2000.
     
  8. driver9000

    driver9000 Established Member

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    Yes the 180s were initially intended for North Western and the early artist impressions show them decked out in NW livery. They were diverted to Great Western when it was decided the London services had no future plans.

    The North Western services were also hampered by the moderation of competition clause Virgin enjoyed which prevented NW calling at stations that would have made them an alternative to Virgin. They weren't allowed to call at Preston and as I remember the Warrington stop was purely operational to attach/detach and change crew. No passengers were allowed to/from Bank Quay.
     
  9. dalesrail

    dalesrail Member

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    Just out of interest, which crews used to operate these Euston services.

    IIRC, it was Virgin kicking off a few years ago which led to the Man Vic-Wakefield Westgate service being split in two as passengers found it cheaper to travel to Wakefield and then travel to London on the ECML. Ironically, Virgin run both lines now.
     
  10. 61653 HTAFC

    61653 HTAFC Established Member

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    The Wakefield thing sounds like an urban legend to me. When North Western Trains and Northern Spirit were merged (and Trans-Pennine/NorthWestExpress split off into TPE), the Wakefield service was split for operational convenience by Northern, so that west-side crews didn't need to sign the route beyond Huddersfield. The downside of that is that few East side crews sign to Marsden!
     
  11. Western Lord

    Western Lord Member

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    Stagecoach run East Coast, Virgin have only 10%. Don't confuse the brand with the ownership.
     
  12. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    The thing that killed the last remaining service (the Rochdale one) was that they were offered very unattractive paths, I believe. I seem to recall it requiring a half hour wait somewhere.

    Of course post-WCML-4-tracking, we did get an effective replacement - the LM services, which are themselves pseudo-open-access (the franchise agreement requires an hourly Trent Valley local service, I understand, but doesn't require it to run to London).
     
  13. jcollins

    jcollins Veteran Member

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    Was it a Rochdale service which got routed via Shrewsbury or was that a different one?
     
  14. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    I don't believe any of them ever were. Possibly you're thinking of that Wales & West service to Waterloo via most of Wales, which was a remnant of the Eurostar Link.
     
  15. jcollins

    jcollins Veteran Member

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    I don't remember one operating but someone previously posted a photo of a NWT liveried 158 at Shrewsbury showing London on the destination display and saying something about it being crewed by GW crews for part of the journey.
     
  16. driver9000

    driver9000 Established Member

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    I think it was Chester and Manchester Victoria.
     
  17. faltskog36abba

    faltskog36abba Member

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    You are right as I have just checked my ticket and it was may 2000 I travelled. I have also just looked at an old timetable and the departures from Rochdale was 06.55 via Victoria, With stops at- newton le-willows ,Warrington bank quay-set down only, Tamworth low level, and Watford junction set down only- arrived in Euston at 10.38. The second departure started at Victoria at 15.26 and omits Warrington and arrived at Euston at 18.43.
     
  18. Welshman

    Welshman Established Member

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    Was that the service where they created a "first-class" section in a 158 with a partition dividing the first bay of seats from the remainder and a few "1st Class" paper stickers?
    And was anyone duped into paying extra for the same seat comfort as everyone else?
     
  19. jcollins

    jcollins Veteran Member

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    I recall seeing a photo where it showed two of the 'First Class' seats had their armrests removed so they didn't get in the way of the partition door. Apparently a different colour carpet (slightly thicker) and different colour seat covers are worth paying extra for :roll:
     
  20. 52290

    52290 Member

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    I travelled on this service to London as the first leg of my annual visit to Bamberg in Germany. I got on the Blackpool portion at Leyland and paid my fare on the train. After Leyland it picked up at Euxton Balshaw Lane and Newton-le-Willows joining up with the Rochdale portion at Warrington Bank Quay. At Lichfield Trent Valley there was an half hour stop to let various Virgin Inter-City's overtake us. The guard would, however, let us out on the platform to stretch our legs. The main problem with the profitability of the service was that it wasn't allowed to pick up passengers at Preston,Wigan or Warrington. Since the demise of this service there have been no direct trains from Leyland and Euxton to London.
     

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