People Power

Discussion in 'Infrastructure & Stations' started by ole man, 11 Nov 2011.

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  1. ole man

    ole man Member

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    Villagers in Steventon has kicked with off Network Rail about closing the crossing box at The Causeway, the level crossing is getting renewed and Network Rail want to make it CCTV controlled from Swindon.
    The villagers have got HMRI involved and a high court injuction making Network Rail keep the crossing box costing Network Rail an extra 200,000 pound and possibly delaying the project by six months.
    How do people get this much power over the railway?.
    They said that that there safety would be affected and did'nt trust CCTV controlled crossings
     
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  3. BestWestern

    BestWestern Established Member

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    There surely must be more to it than that? CCTV crossings are in perfectly safe use all across the network! Is there a history of mishaps or abuse of this crossing?
     
  4. route:oxford

    route:oxford On Moderation

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    People have been empowered.

    A lot of professionals have lost their jobs or are doing signicantly fewer late nights/early morings in the office in recent years.

    It means they are using their spare time to interfere with progress.
     
  5. tbtc

    tbtc Veteran Member

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    ...and why do some parts of the country get ignored whilst other "local" campaigns have big impact?
     
  6. ole man

    ole man Member

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    All i know is that the villagers said that the box was part of the village and did not want it to close, it made them feel safe and if they ever needed to speak to somebody about getting across then its easier than ringing Swindon.
    The signal box are not bothered they never asked the villagers to kick up a fuss, in fact all staff had been redeployed
     
  7. John55

    John55 Member

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    I was trying to find out a little more about this issue at Steventon but can find absolutely no information about it apart from some minutes from the local parish council. Could the OP provide a link to the story about the injunction etc.

    The minutes from the parish council do suggest that NR has made a complete dogs breakfast of telling the locals what was going on and have probably created the problem themselves.

    http://steventon.info/pdf converted/September11m.pdf

    As far as I am aware NR have no God given right to trample over the reasonable desires or expectations of people who live near the railway and should justify their proposed changes. Given how emotive the whole issue of level crossings can be one would expect NR to have been more proactive with the locals. On the limited information I can find NR have clearly not done this to the people of Steventon.
     
  8. jopsuk

    jopsuk Veteran Member

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    What's with the reference to 44ton lorries? I'm looking at this in google maps, where would these large vehicles be heading to? In fact, where (other than the fairly small number of houses, a couple of small business and one or two farms) would the "traffic" be heading for? NR don't seem to have acted well, but there seems to have been a bit of hysteria in those Parish Council minutes.
    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    and I bet if the signallers have had new jobs lined up they'll not relsih being shunted back into theat poky little, probably poorly insulated and drafty, box!
     
  9. ole man

    ole man Member

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    If i can locate the file on the injucton i will, though these are not easy to get hold off, Network Rail have a habit of not wanting to disclose these mishaps.
    The signal box is the size of a garden shed and looks like it, though does have double glazing.
    There are numerous Level crossings controlled by cctv in the uk what makes this crossing so special?.
    Agreed NR have to up there public relations game instead if steam rolling the public, though can't see what the issue is with going to Swindon?
     
  10. raildude

    raildude Member

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    Who pays for the injunction? The Parish for applying or Network Rail for losing? High Court won't be cheap.

    I was also under the impression HMRI was disbanded a few years back.
     
  11. ainsworth74

    ainsworth74 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    To a degree I can understand why NR have perhaps been a bit of a steam roller on this case simply because when was the last time a community went this far in fighting converting a level crossing to CCTV? NR probably should have picked up early on the fact that there was a strong local concern (would it have been that hard to send someone to the parish meeting?), but really I can see why they wouldn't bother with the locals too much.
     
  12. ole man

    ole man Member

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    If it's not the HMRI then it must be the ORR.

    I'm under the impression that the locals want security and are a bit stuck in there ways, as most parish councils are run by vicars,WI, etc etc, a tad unfair and maybe a bit harsh but thats my opinion and mine alone and not that of any company affected by this issue.
     
  13. swt_passenger

    swt_passenger Veteran Member

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    HM Railway Inspectorate as it was under HSE was transferred to become a subsidiary part of ORR, but AFAICS the people who do the actual task are still referred to as HM Railway Inspectors...
     
  14. route:oxford

    route:oxford On Moderation

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    The only thing I can think of is that the A34 is regularly closed at that point due to "accidents" with traffic often routed through Steventon.

    There will be quite a few agricultural movements through Steventon too.
     
  15. jopsuk

    jopsuk Veteran Member

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    But the through route has a bridge. The crossing in question is here. Other than the other crossing the parish council mention (CCTV controlled!) forming a shortish loop, it is essentially on a not very long no-through-road- one that's pretty much single-track, at that.
     
  16. Xenophon PCDGS

    Xenophon PCDGS Veteran Member

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    I have been looking at the minutes of the following meeting, held on Tuesday, 4th October 2011 by Steventon Parish Council, in order to see if any developments had occurred since to that of the September 2011 meeting described in the link submitted above.

    It appears that Network Rail were invited to attend the October 2011 meeting but had declined to do so. There was still great concern felt in the village about the alternative route to be used whilst the Causeway crossing was being re-vamped and there was also the matter of a gas main being installed which would reduce the width of the carriageway to a single passing place in a number of places.

    There is mention also made of a British Railways report which stated that CCTV was the best option for vehicle observation, but not for pedestrian observation.
     
  17. Old Timer

    Old Timer Established Member

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    The local council have no authority to determine what type of railway level crossing arrangement is applied at any location. This decision rests with the ORR in the form of the Safety Directorate and the Railway Inspector dealing with such matters.

    All level crossings have to be installed as per an Order authorised by the Minister/Secretary of State. Whilst views of Local Authorities will normally be taken into consideration by the relevant Inspector, the final decision remains with the ORR, and as far as I am aware there has been no change to the arrangement that such decision may not be challenged.
     
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