Southern BML May Timetable changes

Discussion in 'Allocations, Diagrams & Timetables' started by djh1986, 20 Apr 2015.

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  1. djh1986

    djh1986 Member

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    Currently Southern run a 18.26 VIC-BTN service which misses Gatwick but there's a 18.32 GEX VIC-BTN service just 6 minutes later.

    If I'm reading the National Rail timetable correctly, the 18.26 will become a Southern service calling only at Gatwick (and terminating there) and the 18.32 becomes an 18.30 to Brighton, not calling at Gatwick but it's down as a Gatwick Express.

    Any ideas?!

    [​IMG]
     
  2. D6975

    D6975 Established Member

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    Hit the ground running??
     
  3. Class 170101

    Class 170101 Established Member

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  4. James Wake

    James Wake Member

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    Also means the loss of a train for Three Bridges, seems Southern aren't the best at stopping rush hour services there sometimes, there is a big 40 min gap in direct Victoria trains in the morning between 0741 and 0820, there is a train from Horley to Victoria (from the coastway I think) at 0758, but nothing to link up with it.
    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    This is the current 1826 journey from VIC: http://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/W70146/2015/05/13/advanced
     
  5. Minstral25

    Minstral25 Established Member

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    Changes are AFAIK:

    18:26 becomes 18:30 and will cut Three Bridges but call additionally at Burgess Hill and Preston Park (18:34 Bognor still calls at TBD)

    18:32 becomes 18:26 and is purely a Gatwick only service

    Releases two 377's which means 17:49 Three Bridges and 18:19 Horsham- Reigate via Redhill will at last get 12 Coaches and mean that all passengers can get on which hasn't been the case since January especially at Clapham Junction
     
    Last edited: 21 Apr 2015
  6. djh1986

    djh1986 Member

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    The operator has to be wrong on the NRE website though?

    Surely the new 18.30 can't be a Gatwick Express service if it doesn't stop at Gatwick?
     
  7. Hophead

    Hophead Member

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    Southern have made a PDF summary of the changes available on the website. Good luck interpreting the South London metro cumulative amendments since January.
     
  8. yorkie

    yorkie Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    The only operator here is Southern. Gatwick Express ceased to operate trains in 2008!

    The operator for all these trains should be shown as Southern. Gatwick Express is a route brand (see map), not an operator!

    Southern operated trains on the Gatwick Express route are shown in some sources as operated by Southern, but most sources show the fictional operator Gatwick Express. This is wrong.

    I don't mind Southern referring to Gatwick Express from a branding point of view but they should admit who the operator is!

    Why can't Southern get it right? Greater Anglia get it spot on, the admit the operator of their Stansted Express route is indeed Greater Anglia (example), and don't try to pretend they're a separate non-existent fictional Company.

    Southern do admit in small print "Gatwick Express is operated by Southern" on the bottom of their Gatwick Express website, but the operator should be shown correctly on all display boards. It should not be left to small print!
     
  9. CyrusWuff

    CyrusWuff Established Member

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    A key difference between GatEx and StanEx is that the latter has never been a separate franchise. There's also no alternative operator between London and Stansted

    Southern (and GTR going forwards) are required to keep GatEx as a separate (virtual) operation, with premium pricing, by the franchise agreement. It is, of course, not in the DfT's, nor the franchisee's, interest for the validity of "Southern only" tickets on services operated by Southern that are branded Gatwick Express to be tested in Court.
     
  10. berneyarms

    berneyarms Established Member

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    Southern have published this update today:

     
  11. fishquinn

    fishquinn Established Member Quizmaster

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    I am not sure the guard on a 442 would like it if you got on with a Southern only ticket and a print out of the 'Gatwick Express is operated by Southern'!
     
  12. tsr

    tsr Established Member

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    They don't have guards between Gatwick Airport and London Victoria (the extended services do, South of Gatwick Airport, IIRC, but I have little to do with those services). And what exactly some stray RPI who makes it onboard will do when you present such a document is, unfortunately, anyone's guess. You'd be far more likely to find them at the gatelines preventing Oyster use to Gatwick.
     
  13. Deepgreen

    Deepgreen Established Member

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    I completely agree - it's a nonsense and a ridiculous facet of the franchise regime. Southern should have painted the 442s in their standard livery and possibly added a branding, although even this would be incorrect for the workings that are not GatEx ones. The DM displays could show Gatwick Express where the units are so deployed. Passengers don't really care about the branding - they look at train indicators/timetables/on-line and see trains that run fast to their destination. I don't think a premium fare is appropriate either - it just introduces complication and unnecessary travel restrictions on trains that are not over-crowded in any case.

    Southern simply cannot do communication properly - including platform displays (inconsistent and frequently wrong), on-train scrolling information (way too wordy), e-mail/letter responses (error-filled and sloppily-written) and the farce of first class on the 377/6s and 7s.
     
    Last edited: 22 Apr 2015
  14. physics34

    physics34 Established Member

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    remember that southern/go ahead are a money making machine and will only do the bare minimum they need to do. The DfT could of easily stipulated these things you have mentioned above but havent.

    id imagine when the 387/2s replace the 442s on GatEx the remaining 442s to be used on eastbourne services will be repainted in southern colours!...?
     
    Last edited: 22 Apr 2015
  15. Bishopstone

    Bishopstone Member

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    I think the Gatwick Express pricing policy should operate the other way around. GatEx should be the cheapest option and deal with the vast majority of zone 1 traffic. If you insist upon squeezing five suitcases into the vestibule of an already crowded 377, that should attract a premium fare.

    Back on topic, I see my regular Bishopstone - Lewes train in the morning will be leaving 3 minutes earlier, but I won't be arriving into London Bridge any earlier. I think, cumulatively, ten minutes have been added to both ends of my day since I started this commute in 2007, and that's before lateness against the extended timetable is factored in. And also before extended walking times around the City are factored in thanks to signal priorities being changed against pedestrians.
     
  16. Deepgreen

    Deepgreen Established Member

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  17. tsr

    tsr Established Member

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    To some extent I agree. However, the convenience of an airport express is what sells the tickets, really (as well as a decent lack of advertising of just how quick some of the alternative semi-fast services actually are). I can see a higher price being justifiable for this, but unfortunately not to the extent or with the fare "structure" that it is currently attempted.

    What I don't particularly like is the advertising of evening commuter services from London Victoria via (say) Redhill or Horley, or onwards to a sizeable number of South Coast stations, as calling at Gatwick Airport. It might be best if there was some way to omit the advertising of these stops until, say, Purley or Redhill, so that local travellers could use the trains for employment or flight connections, but not so that vast quantities of luggage get dumped on full-and-standing London commuter semi-fasts. Maybe there should be a Gatwick Express fare of some sort which is a little more expensive than Off-Peak, but a little cheaper than Anytime, and restricting Off-Peak travel from London to Gatwick in the evening but allowing "Express Anytime" or some such tickets to be used.

    The same could apply vice versa in the morning, too, but I found it easier to type my suggestion based on the evening peak.

    I can't see any omission of advertising Gatwick Airport on many Thameslink services for the simple reason that I think it would cause undue passenger congestion and confusion in the Core, where an easy alternative also does not necessarily exist at all hours.
     
  18. Minstral25

    Minstral25 Established Member

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    Yep - Gat-Ex cheap option and stopping at Clapham Junction would remove huge pressure on commuter and off-peak trains. Arun Valley trains in particular are wedged with suitcases for Gatwick

    On Redhill route too we have had longer journey times creep too. First cutting the fast trains (RDH/ECR/LBG) which used to run in 27/28 minutes, then the stoppers slowed from 36 minutes to 41 or 44 minutes plus. Meaning for some journey time extended from 28 to 44 minutes or 58% longer.

    Looks like we won't get the fast trains back when the Dec 2018 timetable comes in aswell but at least we will have a more regular train service.
     
  19. SprinterMan

    SprinterMan Established Member

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  20. Bishopstone

    Bishopstone Member

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    There has been a Twitter storm from Haywards Heath about the removal of an Up Victoria in the am peak, replaced by a Thameslink with a 'change at East Croydon' instruction.
     
  21. Minstral25

    Minstral25 Established Member

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    Just looking at the new Southern timetable there is a few train lengthening. They have withdrawn the extension of a morning and evening GatEx to Brighton which would have released 442's(??) but the extra carriages found seem to be 377 4 coach units.

    On Metro 5 evening trains are now 10 car where only one reduces to 8 car. This has obviously released plenty of 8 car sets to extend other trains. So perhaps this is where the extra 4 car units to strengthen other trains has been found

    Does this mean they have more 377/6 & 7's in service from the new timetable as they are now proving reliability or something else
     
  22. hwl

    hwl Established Member

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    Many other possibilities so probably all of them!

    There have been a few services axed permanently in the pm peak in the new TT which will release some stock permanently for other services but those were 455 operated in the current one so start looking at "metro" services that were 8car 377 becoming 455?

    10 car could also be 4+3+3 car 377s replacing a 4x2 car 377 thus liberating a 4 car 377 to extend something to 12 car.

    Some 455s were being refreshed but that has been completed so may be they can count on more in service too?

    More short forms guaranteed if utilisation has gone up?
     
  23. Bishopstone

    Bishopstone Member

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    Given the need to withdraw the two extended GatEx services, to make the BML timetable work, where is the capacity for all the extra Thameslink services post-2018?
     
  24. Yabbadabba

    Yabbadabba Member

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    We are already running 2x extra trains an hour in each direction above what the post 2018 timetable will be (the Bedford to Three Bridges that they have squeezed into the timetable). The December 2015 timetable change will show how things are going to be. All of this juggling is to ensure that those trains that run to and from London Bridge have a smooth a ride as possible until the day that they can start sending them via the core instead of the terminus platforms.
     
  25. Bishopstone

    Bishopstone Member

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    Understood, but I'm talking specifically of the peaks, when the Thameslink Littlehamptons are supposedly additional to the current Southern service levels, rather than instead of. I can't see where these will fit on the BML, if there's already an insurmountable problem diagramming extended GatEx south of the airport.

    The part-withdrawn trains are retained north of the airport, and are VIC rather than LBG anyway, so how does this change assist the London Bridge congestion issue?
     
  26. Yabbadabba

    Yabbadabba Member

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    All the internal briefings so far have those Littlehampton to London Bridge services going over to Thameslink from Southern. The Brighton to Balcombe Tunnel Junction end of the the BML is not really the problem but north of Stoats Nest Junction is. The problem with the BML is by the time it's got to East Croydon in the morning peak for whatever reason you end up with either all trains to Victoria or all to London Bridge they don't seem to be evenly spread out, then it all on the slow lines and nothing on the fast or vice versa. That just causes uneccassey queues that tends to spread out.
     
  27. Evvy73

    Evvy73 Member

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    One of the biggest problems with this instruction is that the Thameslink Service they are advising people to catch is usually "full and standing" by the time it leaves Preston Park!

    I usually catch the 07:08 (1F80) from Wivelsfield to London Bridge, but when this has been cancelled the obvious alternative route for me would be to get on the 07:17 (1W81) to Blackfriars, however on the few times I attempted this it was always "full and standing" meaning an uncomfortable 1 hour 5 minute stand, so of late I have just gone for the 07:13 (1A59) to Victoria and 'enjoyed' a three mile walk to my office.

    Now that the 07:13 has been cut from the timetable I won't have that option and I can see the 07:17 being even more packed out due to Southerns Instruction!
    I did tweet Thameslink on Monday to ask if this service would become a 12 carriage train (it is currently an 8) and they replied back to say they "don't know"......... which doesn't fill me with confidence! :|
     
  28. Bishopstone

    Bishopstone Member

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    I also tweeted Southern to ask which Brighton trains would be lengthened in lieu of the withdrawn GatEx, but was ignored.
     
  29. Deepgreen

    Deepgreen Established Member

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    STILL no pocket timetables available for Southern - what a shambles!
     
  30. Yabbadabba

    Yabbadabba Member

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    Perhaps they're waiting to see if this timetable last longer than the bi-weekly changes before they think about printing them lol :lol:
     
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