Recent Transpennine Express problems: What's going on?

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by CICERO55, 25 Aug 2019.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. CICERO55

    CICERO55 Member

    Messages:
    23
    Joined:
    6 Sep 2018
    Hello does anyone know whats going on with TPEat the moment with all their cancellations at the moment? Also when will the direct Liverpool Lime Street to Glasgow trains start the last official thing i read was September? Thanks
     
  2. Registered users do not see these banners - join or log in today!

    Rail Forums

     
  3. northernchris

    northernchris Member

    Messages:
    918
    Joined:
    24 Jul 2011
    Transpennine Express have had a rough few days, there was a broken rail on Friday near Morley which meant come the evening peak there were numerous cancellations. Yesterday they seemed to struggle with passenger volumes due to the many events across the North combined with their usual traincrew shortages.
     
  4. LNW-GW Joint

    LNW-GW Joint Veteran Member

    Messages:
    13,403
    Joined:
    22 Feb 2011
    Location:
    Mold, Clwyd
    Liverpool-Glasgow (and Edinburgh via Newcastle) is supposed to start in December.
     
  5. 3270

    3270 Member

    Messages:
    91
    Joined:
    8 Mar 2015
    On Friday 23rd there was also an LNER train (1Y11 0630 Newcastle - KX) that broke down just north of Northallerton for a couple of hours so that scuppered the TPE trains to/from Newcastle. When southbound trains (all TOCs not just TPE) got moving again from around 0930 they ended up queing north of York as they were turning up faster than they could be got through the station platforms. Passenger numbers must have been higher than normal due to the cricket and horse racing but 1Y11 effectively ruined the whole of Friday morning. Then there was the broken rail as mentioned above. There'll also be lots of crew training going on at the moment for the new trains so that won't be helping matters.

    Having said that TPE's timetable does seem to fall to pieces very easily and they then seem to struggle to recover the service.
    If we look at the Liverpool - Newcastle services on Friday 23rd we see that the last such train to actually depart Liverpool for Newcastle was the 0825 service! All subsequent trains from the 0925 to the 2124 were either cancelled outright (7 trains) or started further east (6 trains). Cancellation codes (as seen in Real Time Trains) were a mixture of 'IR' (broken rail), 'TG' (no driver) and 'TH' (no guard). This level of performance (including the cancellation of the last train of the day from Liverpool to Newcastle) is totally unacceptable.

    Southbound from Newcastle on Friday 23rd no TPE trains ran after the 1817 Airport service. The 1853 to Liverpool started at York and the 2001 and 2100 Liverpools were cancelled outright, the latter being the last service to Liverpool. The 2200 Manchester Airport (last southbound TPE of the day from Newcastle) was also cancelled outright.

    I'd be very interested to find out why things just collapse like this.
     
  6. northernchris

    northernchris Member

    Messages:
    918
    Joined:
    24 Jul 2011
    The TPE timetable does seem to be timed very tight, and delays seem to quickly escalate. From looking at the December timetable there appears to be some dwell times added which should help to improve this. I also wonder if some of this come down to Network Rail, if for example during times of disruption they request a Newcastle service is pulled to not spread delays on to the ECML. There could also be issues with how TPE control handle disruption, as other operators appear quicker to recover the service during incidents
     
  7. Mugby

    Mugby Established Member

    Messages:
    1,451
    Joined:
    25 Nov 2012
    Location:
    Derby
    Problems in Leeds last night, the 2335 to Manchester Airport started off late from Newcastle and just got worse. The 2353 stopper to Huddersfield was cancelled due to lack of train crew so extra stops were added to the 2335 to cover for it. It eventually departed from Leeds about 50mins late and more faffing around at HUD joining it to another unit.

    The thing which struck me though was, on the approach to Manchester, it was announced that due to it's lateness, it wouldn't be going to the Airport. Passengers for MIA were assured that taxis had been ordered and staff would be on hand at Piccadilly to direct and help them. When I got off the train, this was clearly untrue, there were no staff on hand and it seemed that MIA passengers were left to fend for themselves. The TM must have been repeating what TPE control had said but I thought it was a very bad show that it was false information - just fob them off and leave them to it!

    In view of the lateness of the 2335 from Leeds (and the extra stops added) I considered getting the 0009 to Manchester instead, which is booked to run non-stop but that was cancelled due to lack of crew also. Quite a number of passengers made some mad dashes between Platforms 15 and 16 and vice versa before anyone knew what was really happening.
     
  8. David Emmott

    David Emmott Member

    Messages:
    866
    Joined:
    26 Nov 2015
    Is that the same broken rail that forced the cancellation of the 1025 Liverpool-Newcastle train on Wednesday 7 August? In Morley tunnel (or at least suspected to be there). By the time we had joined up with the following Scarborough TEP the problem appeared to have been resolved – at least there was no sign of a circuitous detour.
     
  9. mlambeuk

    mlambeuk Member

    Messages:
    120
    Joined:
    19 Feb 2013
    Location:
    York
    Over the past year or so TPE have seemed to have had a lot of problems, Yet the media don't pick up on it,whereas Northern get a load of guff in the media.
     
  10. alansheppard77

    alansheppard77 Member

    Messages:
    38
    Joined:
    16 Aug 2013
    Location:
    Bempton,East Riding
    main problem seem to be drivers cant be bothered to work at weekends
     
  11. class 9

    class 9 Member

    Messages:
    435
    Joined:
    18 Nov 2010
    What you on about? Saturday &Sundays are part of the working week, so the same as any other day.
    The problem is not enough Drivers, coupled with a massive amount of traction training for the new stock that's been ongoing for a fair while.
     
  12. APT618S

    APT618S Member

    Messages:
    37
    Joined:
    7 Dec 2018
    As someone who was on 1E04 0656 EDB KGX (Edinburgh - Kings Cross) we were delayed by 1Y11 and were 119L into KGX.
    For a time York was down to only 2 through platforms with 1xTPE and 2xLNER blocking the other 3 (I am guessing they were waiting for crews).
    At one time I counted 14 trains queuing north of York on Traksy - they were using both the up fast and up slow to queue. They were also some queues for trains entering York from the south.
     
  13. northernchris

    northernchris Member

    Messages:
    918
    Joined:
    24 Jul 2011
    TPE do seem to avoid a lot of the bad press, not sure how!
     
  14. alansheppard77

    alansheppard77 Member

    Messages:
    38
    Joined:
    16 Aug 2013
    Location:
    Bempton,East Riding
    the problem is worse at weekends
     
  15. CHAPS2034

    CHAPS2034 Member

    Messages:
    199
    Joined:
    13 Mar 2018
    I think this is because of how poor Northern were last year; TPE were bad, but they got away with it as Northern (and GTR) were far worse and they stole all the headlines, especially as GTR was affecting London.

    Now things with these two companies have improved (a bit) the headline spotlight has been turned off railways and perhaps the press have been distracted by other things.

    TPE have got away with a lot and managed to avoid the national headlines for which I am sure the management are truly grateful.
     
  16. mike57

    mike57 Member

    Messages:
    233
    Joined:
    13 Mar 2015
    Location:
    East coast of Yorkshire
    TPE have been bad since the timetable changes in May 2018. On the Scarborough branch things improved a lot in May this year when two major problems (which should never have happened in the first place) were resolved, the first was the clash of east and west bound trains at Malton with its single platform, and the second was the lack of turnaround time at Scarborough, which was increased to c60 minutes. However things have gone down hill again over the last two months, and last week was particularly bad, out of 10 personal TPE journeys 3 were cancelled, and two were 20+ minutes late, and bear in mind that the other 5 were all early Scarborough departures, which have stabled there over night so are less prone to problems. What is even worse TPE are trying to deny one of the trains was cancelled when I was stood on Man Vic platform for an hour + with the departure board saying cancelled (17:31 Thursday). I will continue to harass them tomorrow as they dont want to pay up.

    I have been using Transpennine services for 30+ years, and the May 2018 changes were a disaster, as well as the lack of resilience in the timetable the routing of services through Man Vic instead of Piccadilly has been a disaster, loss of connectivity to destinations such as Warrington and Liverpool S parkway has affected me personally as well as the loss of easy connections to many places from Man Pic (Stockport, Wilmslow, Crewe for example). There are currently only 2 tph between Vic and Pic for most of the day, and if as been happening recently one of those is cancelled you have shuffle via Salford Crescent. I would rather have a few minutes longer journey to Pic than be dumped at Vic and face 1 or 2 changes or buying a tram ticket to get to Pic.

    I think the idea of running 5 fast tph Leeds Manchester is flawed, go back to 4, and strengthen busy services with the released stock. Remove the Crossgates, Garforth and Dewsbury stops, its an intercity service. Let Northern serve all the intermediate stations, i.e. go back to the pre May 2018 type service.

    I would also like to see TPE introduce an emergency timetable to be used in times of disruption, and publish it, as some other TOC's have done, run Middlesborough and Scarborough as a shuttle to York, Hull as a shuttle to Leeds, and cut back Newcastle to Darlington, and then run the best possible service Manchester - York
     
  17. DC2001

    DC2001 Member

    Messages:
    81
    Joined:
    4 Aug 2019
    A lot (not all) of the issues with TPE last year were as a result of tight turnarounds which would be manageable if their trains didn't go through so many congested areas. A large number of delays/cancellations came as a result of getting stuck/delayed around Manchester Oxford Road with late running Northern services causing train crew to not be available for crew changes which caused chaos in Manchester and quickly meant trains were late arriving in Manchester Airport and then late leaving, missing out on their paths and being behind trains which they should have been in front of.
    Recently things have been worse with staff being less willing to come in to cover sickness and fewer staff being available due to holidays particularly at weekends however they have at least run a service on all of their routes (albeit with some cancelled services) unlike Northern who have cancelled whole routes and further services still as well as short forming services.

    That is a really good idea. Obviously in an ideal world there would never be any issues, everything would run punctually and there would be not need for a disruption timetable but we all know that disruption does occur.
     
  18. northernchris

    northernchris Member

    Messages:
    918
    Joined:
    24 Jul 2011
    Northern fully deserved the criticisms they got, but TPE have been guilty of most if not all of the above. The one thing that really irks me with TPE is the way they handle delays - all the staff suddenly disappear and leave staff from other operators to pick up the pieces. Their Customer Services seem very disorganised and their train running records don't seem to match reality. Unfortunately I suspect a lot of this is down to First's involvement - organisation and customer service are lacking in their ethos
     
  19. tpjm

    tpjm Member

    Messages:
    185
    Joined:
    25 Jan 2019
    Location:
    The North
    I would completely disagree with that sentiment. Given that I have been at Leeds, Manchester Victoria and Manchester Piccadilly in recent times of severe service disruption, TPE were the only TOC visible, and MCV is a Northern station!
     
  20. js1000

    js1000 Member

    Messages:
    647
    Joined:
    14 Jun 2014
    A fair point although the more clean and modern state of TPE's trains versus Northern give them an impression of competence to Joe Public. TPE's problem is that their routes go through well-known bottlenecks. They are heavily exposed and there a clear lack of resilience.

    What to do with commuter vs express conflicts in the North is a big part of the problem that no-one seems to have an answer to. It's only going to get worse once the hybrid semi-fast Northern Connect services are all introduced. It's a balance. By the Northern service serving all the intermediate stations and providing a 'stopping' service it actually reduces available capacity on the line. Whereas 'skip stopping' with Northern services not stopping at every station and TPE potentially make a few additional calls increases capacity.

    I would argue there is scope for TPE to actually call at commuter stations as it also adds some much needed 'padding' to TPEs timetables. Less than 10 minutes is not really noticeable for passengers but makes a huge difference operationally as 'padding'. For instance, TPE are going to have problems at Manchester Airport due to lack of platform capacity once the new 5/6 coach rolling stock is introduced. Long-term it'll either necessitate either TPE terminating a service at Piccadilly, 'padding' some TPE services against delays on the Styal Line by stopping at some stations or Northern services running to Wilmslow to free up platform space.
     
  21. CHAPS2034

    CHAPS2034 Member

    Messages:
    199
    Joined:
    13 Mar 2018
    Thank you. I'm well aware of what caused the TPE issues last year having suffered numerous disrupted journeys and in the end cutting my discretionary leisure travel to Yorkshire in favour of other areas where trains were more reliable eg West Midlands.

    The point I was making was that the TPE disruption was overshadowed as far as the media were concerned by the utter and widespread chaos at Northern and GTR. Now they have abated, TPE's current issues might gain more media prominence, but there are wider UK non rail issues grabbing the headlines at present.
     
  22. DC2001

    DC2001 Member

    Messages:
    81
    Joined:
    4 Aug 2019
    Personally, I have found that it is usually TPE staff that actually are around when things go wrong. At Victoria, Northern staff are too busy at the ticket gates and TPE staff actually respond to you and try to help if you ask them a question or have been stranded; I have even seen TPE staff giving alternative train details to passengers who have been left stranded by cancelled Northern services. I know that there are some brilliant Northern staff at Victoria but there are also quite a few who just stand in groups talking to each other ignoring customers and some seem to miraculously disappear when trains get cancelled.

    At Piccadilly, I find that the Northern staff doing manual ticket checks mostly don't have a clue what is going on and just direct people to the ticket office if anyone asks them a question whereas the TPE and Virgin staff will check the screens or get their phone out to check platforms or trains the passenger. The TPE staff in the waiting area above platform 13/14 always seem to be helpful but admittedly do seem fed up of answering people asking why their train is cancelled last minute or 'why is everything always late'

    I like the idea of skip-stopping and think it should definitely be encouraged, particularly if it means stations get 2 trains per hour (or more). Ideally there should still be one 'stopper' which stops at all stations or at least all stops between 2 major stations to main connectivity between local stations.

    I believe that from December TPE will be stopping their Redcar - Manchester Airport services at Gatley providing regular passengers a service to Piccadilly and the Airport as well as making it easier for people travelling to Yorkshire and may even encourage a few more longer distance journeys. If it works they could quite easily add one of the other Airport line stops (Heald Green, Burnage, Mauldeth Road or East Didsbury) into the Newcastle services.

    I agree that had there not been chaos at Northern, TPE would have been under the fire of the media much more however some of the disruption may not have occurred in the first place.
     
  23. The Nomad

    The Nomad Member

    Messages:
    42
    Joined:
    9 Jun 2018
    I think they're trying to put too many trains through the Huddersfield corridor - is it 5tph plus 1 for Northern? As soon as anything gets delayed, the ones behind start backing up and there's a lack of overtaking spots.

    Possibly this thought should be in the Speculative Ideas bit, but could they have doubled up trains at Manchester and split them at Leeds or York - say the Newcastle and Middlesbrough pairs?
     
  24. 2L70

    2L70 Member

    Messages:
    56
    Joined:
    18 Feb 2019
    Friends in the Railway press, one particular person who’s name I won’t mention but is a Lobbyist for them it seems.
     
  25. northernchris

    northernchris Member

    Messages:
    918
    Joined:
    24 Jul 2011
    Maybe I've been unlucky then! I'm surprised about Leeds though as that's usually where they disappear when there's no train to dispatch
     
  26. 61653 HTAFC

    61653 HTAFC Established Member

    Messages:
    10,470
    Joined:
    18 Dec 2012
    Location:
    Another planet...
    It's 6 TPE services between Leeds and Manchester each hour, though the 6th is the stopper currently split at Huddersfield. Between LDS and HUD there's also the Northern Southport service as far as Heaton Lodge junction, and the Castleford to Huddersfield from Thornhill LNW junction to Huddersfield.

    Four fasts an hour should be enough really, but the new stock won't allow portion working due to length- and nowhere wants to lose their direct Manchester services.

    The staff seem to go AWOL at Huddersfield when things go wrong, which is a poor do considering it's one of their staff training bases.

    I've also noticed that if the Leeds stopper is late, I'll hear people saying "b***dy Northern rail!" even though it's actually TPE. :rolleyes::lol:
     
  27. 61653 HTAFC

    61653 HTAFC Established Member

    Messages:
    10,470
    Joined:
    18 Dec 2012
    Location:
    Another planet...
    Another broken rail messing things up today, this time in the Stalybridge area.
     
  28. deltic08

    deltic08 On Moderation

    Messages:
    2,431
    Joined:
    26 Aug 2013
    Location:
    Ripon
    I would agree with you if York had more than one north facing bay platform, currently occupied 20 minutes per hour by a Harrogate train. Perhaps the other track that was in the bay until 1989 for York-Darlington trains, could be reinstated off the current Platform 8 line? Two OHLE stanchions would have to be removed and replaced elsewhere first.
    Leeds east end is very busy and cannot handle out of sequence trains. How many times over 20 years has quad tracking been promised and not delivered?
     
  29. gimmea50anyday

    gimmea50anyday Established Member

    Messages:
    2,654
    Joined:
    8 Jan 2013
    Location:
    Back Cab
    5F64 (vice 1F64 due to no train crew) had a fatality west of Huddersfield. That has effectively destroyed the TPE timetable for the rest of the day
     
  30. 61653 HTAFC

    61653 HTAFC Established Member

    Messages:
    10,470
    Joined:
    18 Dec 2012
    Location:
    Another planet...
    Heard about the fatality on the Nova3 thread, thoughts to those affected. Huddersfield was a state as I passed through at around 4pm with the automated announcements seemingly fighting with each other. Credit to the platform staff who were doing their best to help people... less credit (as per usual) to the gateline staff who all seemed to have left their posts despite the barriers being in use.
     
  31. scarby

    scarby Member

    Messages:
    446
    Joined:
    20 May 2011
    The arrivals into Scarborough are frequently, and I mean frequently, late, and it has been like this since at least the May 2018 timetable change. Pick almost any day in RTT and you will find them. Tuesday August 27 arrivals: 0940 arr 1007, 1040 arr 1053, 1640 arr 1657, 1740 arr 1813, 1944 arr 1958.

    It means that journey times between York are Scarborough often end up being the same as they were 100 years ago, possibly even worse.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page