Shrewsbury/London,Prime Ministers questions

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merlodlliw

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Rail users urged to back direct London link fight

Interesting item from the Shropshire Star, 15 July:
Shrewsbury's MP today urged rail travellers to get behind the campaign to restore Shropshire’s direct train link to London. Daniel Kawczynski wants people to write to Transport Secretary Justine Greening, urging her to make the route a priority when deciding who should take over county rail services next month. He said that it was 'outrageous' such a service did not exist already.

The call follows an invitation for Shropshire MPs and county business leaders to meet Theresa Villiers, the transport minister, next week. That invitation was made after Mr Kawczynski raised the matter with David Cameron at Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday. Transport giants Main Line, Virgin, First Group, Abeillo [sic], and Keolis are all in negotiations to take over the 15-year franchise for the West Coast Main Line, which passes through the county.

The decision will be made in August, and county representatives have been pressing for whoever gets the contract to be made to reintroduce a Shropshire to London route. Mr Kawczynski said: 'We must show the Secretary of State how important this service is to Shrewsbury and Shropshire, which is why I'm asking everyone to please write a letter or e-mail urging her to consider a direct service in the coming 15-year contract decision in August. I will continue to strongly state the case to the Transport Secretary and the Prime Minister, but we also need a demonstration of strong public support. Frankly it is outrageous that we do not have this service already, and I am doing my utmost to help secure the direct link that Shrewsbury and Shropshire deserves.

'Mr Kawczynski said people can contact his office with messages of support which he will then pass on. E-mail (deleted)
Abellio and Keolis are certainly 'transport giants' as they are the nationalised railways of The Netherlands and France respectively. 'Main Line' on the other hand, does not exist. There are just four preferred bidders.

The DfT's consultation process already closed in May 2011, but it has been decided to re-open a consultation on the Train Service Requirement side of things. This is open until 17 August, and full documentation is available on the DfT website. Apparently, though, it is hoped to announce the winning bidder on 13 August, in time for the new operator to take over the service at the timetable change on 9 December. The hope must be that one or more of the bidders have offered a Shrewsbury train as an extra in their bid; whoever wins will be required to use the existing fleet of Voyagers and Pendolinos - finding a Voyager to serve Shrewsbury, since Wolverhampton - Shrewsbury is not electrified, would need some thought.

All in all, one might think that a better hope would be to persuade Chiltern Railways to extend a couple of their London - Birmingham trains to serve Shrewsbury. Their loco-hauled trains know the place well as they mostly ex-Wrexham and Shropshire ones! And does the West Coast Main Line really pass through Shropshire? The county is certainly one of the few (are there any others?) English counties with no direct London service.

Put up with permission of http://www.nwrail.org.uk/nwnews.htm
 
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The Planner

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And how are Chiltern going to do that ? they won't have the stock to get to Shrewsbury and which way are they going ?
 

David10

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And how much did WSMR lose in a bit over 2 years, something like £13 million? Yes services would now be able to call at Birmingham and Wolverhampton but even so I think WSMR were only recovering 50% of their costs.

And with the West Coast franchise winner shortly to be announced, about a year too late to be raising this.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
And how are Chiltern going to do that ? they won't have the stock to get to Shrewsbury
Arriva have plenty of Mk3s in store.
 

merlodlliw

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And how much did WSMR lose in a bit over 2 years, something like £13 million? Yes services would now be able to call at Birmingham and Wolverhampton but even so I think WSMR were only recovering 50% of their costs.

And with the West Coast franchise winner shortly to be announced, about a year too late to be raising this.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Arriva have plenty of Mk3s in store.

But what would pull the mark 3s. How have you get a figure of £ millions out of interest
 

paul1609

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Rail users urged to back direct London link fight

Interesting item from the Shropshire Star, 15 July:
Shrewsbury's MP today urged rail travellers to get behind the campaign to restore Shropshire’s direct train link to London. Daniel Kawczynski wants people to write to Transport Secretary Justine Greening, urging her to make the route a priority when deciding who should take over county rail services next month. He said that it was 'outrageous' such a service did not exist already.

The call follows an invitation for Shropshire MPs and county business leaders to meet Theresa Villiers, the transport minister, next week. That invitation was made after Mr Kawczynski raised the matter with David Cameron at Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday. Transport giants Main Line, Virgin, First Group, Abeillo [sic], and Keolis are all in negotiations to take over the 15-year franchise for the West Coast Main Line, which passes through the county.

The decision will be made in August, and county representatives have been pressing for whoever gets the contract to be made to reintroduce a Shropshire to London route. Mr Kawczynski said: 'We must show the Secretary of State how important this service is to Shrewsbury and Shropshire, which is why I'm asking everyone to please write a letter or e-mail urging her to consider a direct service in the coming 15-year contract decision in August. I will continue to strongly state the case to the Transport Secretary and the Prime Minister, but we also need a demonstration of strong public support. Frankly it is outrageous that we do not have this service already, and I am doing my utmost to help secure the direct link that Shrewsbury and Shropshire deserves.

'Mr Kawczynski said people can contact his office with messages of support which he will then pass on. E-mail (deleted)
Abellio and Keolis are certainly 'transport giants' as they are the nationalised railways of The Netherlands and France respectively. 'Main Line' on the other hand, does not exist. There are just four preferred bidders.

The DfT's consultation process already closed in May 2011, but it has been decided to re-open a consultation on the Train Service Requirement side of things. This is open until 17 August, and full documentation is available on the DfT website. Apparently, though, it is hoped to announce the winning bidder on 13 August, in time for the new operator to take over the service at the timetable change on 9 December. The hope must be that one or more of the bidders have offered a Shrewsbury train as an extra in their bid; whoever wins will be required to use the existing fleet of Voyagers and Pendolinos - finding a Voyager to serve Shrewsbury, since Wolverhampton - Shrewsbury is not electrified, would need some thought.

All in all, one might think that a better hope would be to persuade Chiltern Railways to extend a couple of their London - Birmingham trains to serve Shrewsbury. Their loco-hauled trains know the place well as they mostly ex-Wrexham and Shropshire ones! And does the West Coast Main Line really pass through Shropshire? The county is certainly one of the few (are there any others?) English counties with no direct London service.

Put up with permission of http://www.nwrail.org.uk/nwnews.htm

From my admittedly limited use of the WSMR services most locals liked the idea of through services but in practice changed at Wolverhampton for the faster Virgin Service to from london.
On Down am, up pm services the trundle round Birmingham was near empty with a few enthusiasts for company.



 

aformeruser

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The county is certainly one of the few (are there any others?) English counties with no direct London service.

The word 'county' doesn't mean a lot. Rutland has a lower population than the town of Widnes and yet I would class Halton (the borough containing Widnes and the neighbouring town of Runcorn) as a small borough which has a direct London service.

The fact that Shrewsbury is the county town doesn't mean a lot either. It's smaller than non-county towns like Bolton, Huddersfield and Middlesbrough.
 
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The fact that Shrewsbury is the county town doesn't mean a lot either. It's smaller than non-county towns like Bolton, Huddersfield and Middlesbrough.

Yes, but Shrewsbury & Telford (only 15-20 mins apart) have a combined population of around 200,000 - not something to be sniffed at. And Shrewsbury is still a notable railway junction - if it had a direct London service many (including myself) would change there and use it.

At the moment, many in Shropshire drive to Stafford (!) and get the train to London from there. Madness.
 

Gareth Marston

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Yes, but Shrewsbury & Telford (only 15-20 mins apart) have a combined population of around 200,000 - not something to be sniffed at. And Shrewsbury is still a notable railway junction - if it had a direct London service many (including myself) would change there and use it.

At the moment, many in Shropshire drive to Stafford (!) and get the train to London from there. Madness.

agreed its was product on offer not the real market that drags down Shropshire- London
 

Masboroughlad

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Yes, but Shrewsbury & Telford (only 15-20 mins apart) have a combined population of around 200,000 - not something to be sniffed at. And Shrewsbury is still a notable railway junction - if it had a direct London service many (including myself) would change there and use it.

At the moment, many in Shropshire drive to Stafford (!) and get the train to London from there. Madness.

Would a Holyhead to London service via Shrewbury make any sense? Or would it be too long? Could divert the West Coast one this way with Voyagers or give it to ATW? Or a London Midland Service but would need more suitable stock?
 

aformeruser

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Yes, but Shrewsbury & Telford (only 15-20 mins apart) have a combined population of around 200,000 - not something to be sniffed at. And Shrewsbury is still a notable railway junction - if it had a direct London service many (including myself) would change there and use it.

At the moment, many in Shropshire drive to Stafford (!) and get the train to London from there. Madness.

With Telford being a larger town and closer to an existing London service than Shrewsbury, wouldn't a direct service for Telford be a better starting point?

Why not have a Voyager operated service from Telford Central-Wolverhampton-London every morning and a reverse working in the evening? Then if it's successful the frequency can be enhanced and a Shrewsbury extension can be looked at.
 

Masboroughlad

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With Telford being a larger town and closer to an existing London service than Shrewsbury, wouldn't a direct service for Telford be a better starting point?

Why not have a Voyager operated service from Telford Central-Wolverhampton-London every morning and a reverse working in the evening? Then if it's successful the frequency can be enhanced and a Shrewsbury extension can be looked at.

This is a good idea. Or simply a Voyager a day each way.
 
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With Telford being a larger town and closer to an existing London service than Shrewsbury, wouldn't a direct service for Telford be a better starting point?

Why not have a Voyager operated service from Telford Central-Wolverhampton-London every morning and a reverse working in the evening? Then if it's successful the frequency can be enhanced and a Shrewsbury extension can be looked at.

But Telford Central is just a 2-platform 'through' station half-way along the Shrewsbury-Wolverhampton line.

Starting at Shrewsbury means:

1) You can use Shrewsbury's platforms and other rail facilities.
2) You can use Shrewsbury's many connecting services.
3) You serve a town of 70,000 which is just 15-20 minutes from Telford Central anyway.

Starting at Telford makes no sense really - how would it even work?! Train comes in from London... then what? It would have to immediately head out of the station to avoid blocking the line: either out to Wellington (where it would have to faff about) or head out of Telford on the "wrong side" of the line until Madeley Junction or Cosford even, so even then would be blocking the line.

--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Would a Holyhead to London service via Shrewbury make any sense? Or would it be too long? Could divert the West Coast one this way with Voyagers or give it to ATW? Or a London Midland Service but would need more suitable stock?

A Holyhead-Chester-Wrexham-Shrewsbury-Telford-Wolverhampton-London service would make sense. ATW would kick off though which is why it won't happen. Ridiculous how the supposedly privatised railways require monopolies... :rolleyes:

Ultimately though electrifying the Shrewsbury-Wolverhampton line would make even more sense. You'd run EMU Metro services from Wellington (using the bay platform) calling at all stops into Birmingham New Street, and West Coast services from Shrewsbury, calling at Telford Central and then Wolverhampton.
 
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David10

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But what would pull the mark 3s. How have you get a figure of £ millions out of interest
DBS have plenty of 67s on duties that could be covered by other locos, not to mention a few are in store. The £13 million losses, right from the horses mouth http://www.independent.co.uk/news/u...ire-rail-to-halt-london-services-2194727.html
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
I fail to see how Chiltern would make it to Shrewsbury without opening lines that aren't used at the moment for passenger services
WSMR managed to, ok they would have to call at New St in lieu of Moor St.
 
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The Planner

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WSMR managed to, ok they would have to call at New St in lieu of Moor St.

They went round the houses and couldn't stop at New St. Moderation of competition is gone but I can't see Chiltern wanting to take this on. They would struggle getting through to Wolverhampton if these were to be extra services and not replacing existing ones.
 

Kettledrum

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And how much did WSMR lose in a bit over 2 years, something like £13 million? Yes services would now be able to call at Birmingham and Wolverhampton but even so I think WSMR were only recovering 50% of their costs.

And with the West Coast franchise winner shortly to be announced, about a year too late to be raising this.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Arriva have plenty of Mk3s in store.

Yes, there were huge losses (circa £2.9million per year - the rest was capital investment), but two of the main reasons have changed:

- WSMR had a very slow route all round the houses - that put people off, as the journey was too long to be competitive;
- WSMR couldn't stop at key stations on the route (including Wolverhampton and Birmingham New Street) becasue of the Virgin contract - with that issue removed, there's a good chance of attracting much more revenue

I certainly wouldn't rule it out from Chiltern, particularly with their successful programme of refurbishing Mk3's.
 

6Gman

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Rail users urged to back direct London link fight

Interesting item from the Shropshire Star, 15 July:
Shrewsbury's MP today urged rail travellers to get behind the campaign to restore Shropshire’s direct train link to London. Daniel Kawczynski wants people to write to Transport Secretary Justine Greening, urging her to make the route a priority when deciding who should take over county rail services next month. He said that it was 'outrageous' such a service did not exist already.

The call follows an invitation for Shropshire MPs and county business leaders to meet Theresa Villiers, the transport minister, next week. That invitation was made after Mr Kawczynski raised the matter with David Cameron at Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday. Transport giants Main Line, Virgin, First Group, Abeillo [sic], and Keolis are all in negotiations to take over the 15-year franchise for the West Coast Main Line, which passes through the county.


Put up with permission of http://www.nwrail.org.uk/nwnews.htm

Where does the WCML pass through Shropshire ?
 

LNW-GW Joint

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- WSMR had a very slow route all round the houses - that put people off, as the journey was too long to be competitive;
- WSMR couldn't stop at key stations on the route (including Wolverhampton and Birmingham New Street) becasue of the Virgin contract - with that issue removed, there's a good chance of attracting much more revenue

But there are no paths on the only viable route into Euston.
The "10th path" is on offer to the WC franchisee for extra Liverpool/Preston services.
The next increase comes from Stafford-Norton Bridge changes by 2018-ish.

And there are no spare Voyagers, certainly not in the peak.
Might change in 2016 when the Voyagers are up for re-leasing.
Any other route is a waste of time (literally).

You might tinker with EBW services to put a double Voyager on some services (switching the 390 to Birmingham-Scotland), with one set then continuing to Salop.
But VT don't seem to want to do that (might work after all the 390s are in service).
Shrewsbury's fate is even now being decided by DfT and the WC winner.
 

PHILIPE

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Am I right in saying that when Telford Central station was opened, the Council contributed money so that the platform would be built long enough to take the Shrewsbury to Euston services at that time. However, possibly in the early nineties, the service was withdrawn so the Council asked for their money back !!!
 

Michael.Y

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Where does the WCML pass through Shropshire ?

It doesn't.

ATW used to operate services to London Waterloo along the south - there's no reason why a London extension to a Holyhead-Birmingham service couldn't be awarded to them as opposed to the WCML franchise winner; although in this case London Midland would be the best fit.

At present, Shrewsbury is 2.5 hours away from London with a single change at Wolverhampton. Four trains leave SHR before 6am in order to make the arrival time at Euston 9am. Not the worst connected place in the country.
 

PHILIPE

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ATW did attempt something similar a couple of years ago but as an extension to Aberystwyth to Birmingham International services. The bid failed apparently.
 

Michael.Y

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ATW did attempt something similar a couple of years ago but as an extension to Aberystwyth to Birmingham International services. The bid failed apparently.

It failed due to WSMR's existence - according to Wiki, ATW offered to bypass Wolverhampton etc. so as to not duplicate WSMR's services. WSMR protested, saying that the service would push its profitability back a year. However, as was seen, it was gone within a year anyway.
 

tbtc

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It failed due to WSMR's existence - according to Wiki, ATW offered to bypass Wolverhampton etc. so as to not duplicate WSMR's services. WSMR protested, saying that the service would push its profitability back a year. However, as was seen, it was gone within a year anyway.

Shrewsbury would have a direct London service today if it weren't for WSMR. Funny old world...
 

Tracky

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Shrewsbury to London - the answer is obvious...

Currently there is an hourly Euston-Chester Voyager

Some of these continue down the coast, some split with half going down the coast and half forming the return working.

Have 1, 2 or 3 a day booked to split at Crewe and run in that way.

Free up Voyagers by building more Pendo's for BHM-EDB/GLC diagrams
 

Gareth Marston

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Direct services will only happen if their extensions of existing paths from Euston or Marylebone. The direct services Shrewsbury use to enjoy were always extensions of Birmingham to London services, GWR started off at Birkenhead as 3 coaches and it grew to 14 plus by time Snow Hill was reached and shrunk en reverse.

Current hourly semi fast to Birmingham is a 4 car all standard ATW Class 158 many of which are overcrowded at peak times/ when something on at NEC or sun shines on Cardigan Bay/ concert on beach is on. Demand is going up so pressure is on to make these services longer. ( 9 car Pendolino only has 5 standard carriages?) Were almost at point of needing to extend InterCity length rakes to Shrewsbury in lieu of DMU's at peak times anyway just for capacity.

If you look at BR 1991/1992 tt guess what the peak commuter train in each direction from Shrewsbury to Birmingham is? That's right a West Coast InterCity from/to Euston.

Its as much about capacity for West Midlands to Shopshire as through links to London.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Shrewsbury would have a direct London service today if it weren't for WSMR. Funny old world...

I'd like to know how ATW were ever going to resource it without stealing something off a franchised service.
 
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