Planning Permission for Rail Services?

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by route:oxford, 5 Jun 2015.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. route:oxford

    route:oxford Established Member

    Messages:
    4,224
    Joined:
    1 Nov 2008
    An article run in "The Oxford Mail" today discusses how the lives of people in North Oxford will be ruined by HS2.

    Essentially, many residents are frightened that trains loaded with ballast will thunder through Oxford on their way to the construction site and some poorly built houses will be in danger of collapsing due to the vibrations.

    I was intrigued by a quote from the Oxford City Council board member for Planning and Transport - Alex Hollingsworth (Labour)
    Is it true that local authorities can pick and choose which freight or even passenger services pass through their towns or cities?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 5 Jun 2015
  2. Iskra

    Iskra Established Member

    Messages:
    1,213
    Joined:
    11 Jun 2014
    Location:
    Chapeltown, Sheffield
    Is the line currently a passenger only line?

    If so, maybe it could be considered a 'change of use' to change it to freight and therefore require planning permission.

    (That's just a guess for now, may be able to ask an expert later on and clarify)
     
  3. WatcherZero

    WatcherZero Established Member

    Messages:
    8,474
    Joined:
    25 Feb 2010
    As far as I know it only applies to the authority where the construction is taking place, the developer has to produce a plan showing how materials will be transported to and from site.
     
  4. Elecman

    Elecman Established Member

    Messages:
    1,095
    Joined:
    31 Dec 2013
    Location:
    Lancashire
    I don't think a local authority has any jurisdiction on change of use of existing railway lines from passenger only to mixed or vice versa, it would be in the railways GDO. As its an operational matter
     
  5. John Webb

    John Webb Established Member

    Messages:
    1,048
    Joined:
    5 Jun 2010
    Location:
    St Albans
    As the alternative would be dozens of large lorries on the local roads rather than relatively quiet trains, I know which I'd prefer......
     
  6. bluenoxid

    bluenoxid Established Member

    Messages:
    1,787
    Joined:
    9 Feb 2008
    I understand that this is connected to the noise and vibration conditions of the Oxford extension. However, generally they don't have much real clout AFAIK
     
  7. edwin_m

    edwin_m Veteran Member

    Messages:
    11,026
    Joined:
    21 Apr 2013
    Location:
    Nottingham
    As I think there is a virtual quarry at Hinksey, ballast trains presumably "thunder" through Oxford quite often already. As for the new line, I imagine there have been construction trains.
     
  8. telstarbox

    telstarbox Established Member

    Messages:
    3,903
    Joined:
    23 Jul 2010
    Location:
    Wennington Crossovers
    Network Rail can do what they want within the existing network. New construction requires a Transport and Works Act Order (for lines) and/or a planning application (which also applies for buildings, new car parks, etc).
     
    Last edited: 5 Jun 2015
  9. The Planner

    The Planner Established Member

    Messages:
    7,790
    Joined:
    15 Apr 2008
    They also assume it isn't going to be slab track.
     
  10. NotATrainspott

    NotATrainspott Established Member

    Messages:
    2,394
    Joined:
    2 Feb 2013
    As do HS2 Ltd.
     
  11. The Planner

    The Planner Established Member

    Messages:
    7,790
    Joined:
    15 Apr 2008
    Really? various sources I know say that they haven't decided yet.
     
  12. Ianigsy

    Ianigsy Member

    Messages:
    243
    Joined:
    12 May 2015
    It can get interesting when you get two local authorities squaring up to each other as well. I live in a small market town right on the border between North and West Yorkshire, where several years ago the local (Leeds City) councillors decided to try to stop the procession of lorries laden with gypsum coming through the town. All was going smoothly, until North Yorkshire stymied the whole thing by pointing out that none of the alternative routes suggested by Leeds were acceptable for heavily-laden lorries.
     
  13. LNW-GW Joint

    LNW-GW Joint Established Member

    Messages:
    10,182
    Joined:
    22 Feb 2011
    Location:
    Mold, Clwyd
    I was leafleted at Wigan NW station last year about the routeing of nuclear fuel trains on the WCML through the town.
    It appeared to be part of a concerted campaign to get rid of the Sellafield traffic across the rail network (not just Wigan).
    The leaflets mentioned Wigan a lot but I think they just changed the name for each campaign area.
    The map included power stations that have now closed!
    The argument was mainly about how close to heavily built-up areas the trains ran (eg West London line, West Midland, North West), and the risk of derailment and puncturing of the containers.
    I told them it was safer than them being on the roads, and that it kept the lights on, and they weren't pleased.
    I'm pretty sure nobody had a say about how fuel would reach the nuclear power stations from Sellafield when they were built.
     
  14. najaB

    najaB Veteran Member

    Messages:
    15,394
    Joined:
    28 Aug 2011
    Location:
    Scotland
    Because back in those days, people had better things to do with their time and there were no websites or social media to parade scaremongering half-truths around dressed up as facts.
     
  15. Pinza-C55

    Pinza-C55 Member

    Messages:
    359
    Joined:
    23 May 2015
    The golden rule is that councils know nothing about anything.
     
  16. 34D

    34D Established Member

    Messages:
    6,011
    Joined:
    9 Feb 2011
    Location:
    Yorkshire
    I understand they can do more than that with their specific 'permitted development' rights. Do correct me, but this can encompass short extensions I believe.
     
  17. The Planner

    The Planner Established Member

    Messages:
    7,790
    Joined:
    15 Apr 2008
    Thats the way I understand it, if its within existing railway boundaries then permitted development applies.
     
  18. Chrisgr31

    Chrisgr31 Established Member

    Messages:
    1,374
    Joined:
    2 Aug 2011
    Surely HS2 will be given planning permission by the Government as part of the HS2 bill? I would assume that would cover all the consents they require or else it will be chaos with all manner of people trying to block it.
     
  19. NotATrainspott

    NotATrainspott Established Member

    Messages:
    2,394
    Joined:
    2 Feb 2013
    Yes, the Hybrid Bill provides the legal rights for the scheme to be built. I believe the various councils' planning permission departments do become involved at the level of fine detail, e.g. what a tunnel vent/intervention shaft building looks like, but nothing they can do will stop the scheme being built. The exact design of the stations is also done at the planning permission level, as the designs included in the Hybrid Bill are intended as an achievable design which the Environmental Statement can accurately measure the impact of it being built, e.g. number of lorry movements and waste produced.

    As an example, here's what Birmingham City Council say Curzon Street station could look like in their plans:
    [​IMG]

    Compare this to what was actually authorised in the Hybrid Bill:
    [​IMG]

    The two station designs are basically identical from a railway systems perspective and would take a comparable amount of time and money to build, but you can see how Birmingham CC would want to make the design fit in with the other developments around the site. The Hybrid Bill doesn't cover any of the surrounding area not necessary for the HS2 scheme to be built, including any possibility of over-site development at Euston. Indeed, the Hybrid Bill includes the plans to build Euston (Option 8) with a flat concrete deck as a roof rather than an architectural trainshed, leaving Camden Borough Council to actually approve any over-site development plans.
     
  20. Andyjs247

    Andyjs247 Member

    Messages:
    482
    Joined:
    1 Jan 2011
    Location:
    North Oxfordshire
    The story relates to the Oxford-Bicester line which is undergoing reconstruction. Perhaps someone should point out to the residents of North Oxford that the line serves an existing stone terminal at Banbury Road. They seem to cope with regular stone trains already; I can't see that that there is any change of use or that HS2 is any concern of Oxford City Council.

    Residents are however alarmed that the freight trains will now be up to 775m long and will run at 60mph instead of 30mph and so will cause more vibration. I would suggest that the newly rebuilt line may even lead to a reduction compared to now with deeper ballast, improved drainage etc. Has this been (or will it be) measured I wonder?
     
  21. route:oxford

    route:oxford Established Member

    Messages:
    4,224
    Joined:
    1 Nov 2008
    Don't you just love the way we quite happily mix metric and imperial measurements in the same sentence?

    Of course if a train is twice as long, but runs twice as fast, it'll take the same length of time to pass!

    (Current or recent freight on this route includes traffic to the Bicester army depot.)
     
  22. TheNewNo2

    TheNewNo2 Member

    Messages:
    905
    Joined:
    31 Mar 2015
    Location:
    Canary Wharf
    I remember reading a story about the new IEP depot being built in Bristol. Residents were saying they'd be kept awake by the noise. The railway people said "it won't be as loud as the night freights that go past". The residents said "what night freights?"
     
  23. GatwickDepress

    GatwickDepress Established Member

    Messages:
    1,891
    Joined:
    14 Jan 2013
    Location:
    Milton Keynes
    There's something strangely beautiful about that.
     
  24. Andyjs247

    Andyjs247 Member

    Messages:
    482
    Joined:
    1 Jan 2011
    Location:
    North Oxfordshire
    How very true.

    The Wolvercote residents probably haven't noticed that much of the ballast for the reconstruction of the line is now arriving by rail - past their homes in north Oxford (as it should). Further down the line towards Bicester the residents of Islip, Merton, Ambrosden will I am sure have noticed! They will be relieved that this is the case and they are no longer subject to the same convoys of lorries. In Bicester the initial construction for the new chord involved many lorries which were quite noticeable. But once stone began to arrive by rail the number of lorries dropped considerably (I live within 500m of the construction site so can speak from experience!)

    It was also a planning requirement for Evergreen 3/EWR Phase 1 that much of the bulk materials arrived by rail and I imagine it will be the same when HS2 gets the go ahead. And presumably it is also a planning requirement for the Banbury Road stone terminal, ie for the stone to arrive by rail! The council is going to look very silly if they now try to say you can't deliver stone by rail either to the stone terminal or ballast for construction of EWR past some houses which happen to be built next to the line.
     
  25. Dhassell

    Dhassell Member

    Messages:
    695
    Joined:
    22 Mar 2015
    Highly doubt Ballast Trains will knock down houses considering Many freight pass there every day!
     
  26. Dolive21

    Dolive21 Member

    Messages:
    429
    Joined:
    20 Dec 2009
    The sui generis use of a railway covers all railways, however busy or quiet. You are also sometimes allowed to build a private siding. Railways have Part 8, Class A of the GPDO 2015, which allows development on operational land, but not new hotels, stations or bridges. It also doesn't cover new factories except when they are wholly in a station.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page