The Great HST Cascade?

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HSTEd

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With Great Western electrification works to Bristol and Cardiff underway, apparent extension of electrification to Hull on the cards (if it has not been already commited, or atleast linking Selby to the southbound ECML with electrics anyway) and the impending order of huge numbers of Bi-mode IEP, it would appear that shortly there will be a large number of HSTs which will be surplus to requirements on both the Great Western and East Coast routes.

If Midland Main Line electrification is commited this will result in yet more HSTs being made surplus to existing requirements, but I'm not sure this is actually going to happen any time soon.

So what happens to them? The persistant rumours about HSTs being retained for service to Cornwall and the like would seem to indicate that atleast someone thinks they have a long useful life remaining if they are rebuilt to fit with DDA restrictions. Therefore in this age of Austerity/Value for Money (see McNulty) simply selling them for scrap would seem to be the height of wastefulness.

So I decided to work out some ideas about how to use them to help provide large amounts of diesel stock for capacity enhancement and Pacer replacement on-the-cheap.

Assumptions I made in developing this idea/plan thing:
  1. Although rebuilidng them along the lines of the Chiltern Power-Door sets would be acceptable, no new equipment (such as locomotives) will be purchased due to the relatively short revenue life remaining on the Mark 3s
  2. A shortened 2+5 HST formation can match the acceleration and thus timings of a Cl22x or Cl180
  3. IEP Bi-mode will be ordered and will displace all off-wires workings on EC and GW other than the services to Cornwall
  4. Services to Cornwall etc. will require approximately 12 sets, 5 of which will be the First owned ones, freeing the rest of the GW inventory for cascade
  5. Grand Central, which is currently using both Cl180s and HSTs can be pursuaded relatively easily to trade it's HSTs for additional Cl180s to afford it a standardised fleet.
  6. Shortened HSTs would be usable on the Cotswold line and passengers would be equally happy to travel on a rebuilt HST as they would on a more modern Cl180.
  7. The signalling on the Breckland line has been upgraded to have sighting distances suitable for 100mph running, allowing HST100 differentials to be implemented with only track upgrade works.

Phase 1 - The Great Western

Great Western currently has 117 power cars available , enough to form 58 sets, all of which I understand are or will shortly be 2+8 formations. (So 468 trailer vehicles)

So with 12 sets (roughly?) being retained for services to Cornwall (with 96 trailers) this would enable 46 sets to be cascaded.

1. 5 shortened sets (2+5, 25 trailers) would be cascaded internally to free all five Cl180s currently used by FGW for cascading to Grand Central, allowing all three of it's HSTs to be added to the cascade pool. (They apparently were originally happy with double forming Cl180s anyway). (Net cost: 2 power car pairs and 1 trailer vehicle)

2. 29 shortened sets (2+5, 145 trailers) would be cascaded to CrossCountry, allowing the Cl220s and some Cl221s to be freed (largely those on the quieter diagrams taht do not require doubling-up), allowing Cl221s to be cascaded onto the Cl220 diagrams and the Cl220s to replace XC's entire fleet of turbostars.
As these shortened sets will have potentially 50% greater seating capacity than a Cl220 has at present (I calculate 280 second class and 34 first class with a catering base/buffet counter at the end of the rake), this would mean fewer diagrams would have to be doubled up, permitting a greater percentage of busy workings to be. The net effect of the cascade is 21 additional Voyager sets in seat numbers terms.
The 29 Turbostars will be released to the Cascade Pool.

3. 12 shortened (2+7, 84 trailers) HSTs will be cascaded to EMT for use on the Liverpool-Norwich regional express. Travel times would be retained at current levels or improved by use of the 110-125mph running available on the traversed sections of the WCML, MML and ECML, and by implementing targetted track measures to implement HST100 differentials on the Breckland Line and on parts of the southern Liverpool-Manchester line.
Platform length issues at Manchester Oxford Road will be dealt with either by withdrawing the stop, allowing the trains to foul points east of the station and using SDO or by bringing forward the long proposed reconstruction of the station.
The provision of 12 trains will allow 18 Cl158s to be be released from EMT to the cascade pool and provide drastically increased capacity on the heavily loaded sections of the route, especially west of Nottingham.

4. Cascade 15 trailer vehicles to Greater Anglia for conversion into loco hauled vehicles, this will permit all the Cl90 loco hauled rakes to be operated with 9 Mark 3s instead of the current mixed lengths.

After Phase 1 the Cascade pool consists of: 7 power cars, 127 trailer vehicles, 16 3-coach Turbostars, 13 2-coach Turbostars and 18 2-coach express sprinters.

Phase 2 - The East Coast

The deployment of IEP bi-mode on what appears to be all off-wire services on the ECML will release 30 power cars and 117 trailer vehicles. This increases the Cascade Pool to: 37 power cars, 220 trailer vehicles, 16 3-coach turbostars, 13 2-coach turbostars and 18 2-coach Express Sprinters.

5. Cascade 10 full length (2+8, 80 trailers) and 8 shortened (2+5, 40 trailers) HST sets to ScotRail for operations on Edinburgh/Glasgow to Aberdeen, as well as some trains to Inverness. Journey times over the whole length of the route would be maintained by improvements to line speeds utilising additional HST differentials.
This would permit 20 3-carriage Cl170s to be released to the cascade pool. (The likely improved utilisation of the larger fleet of Turbostars rather than a smaller fleet of HSTs would be countered in that I believe atleast some Aberdeen-Edinburgh/Glasgow services run doubled up at the present time).

6. The remaining power car and 8 trailers would be preserved and perhaps converted for operation with the surviving prototype power car as a heritage train.

7. Six additional trailer cars could be converted to loco hauled vehicles and cascaded internally to enable the addition of more seated carriages to the Night Riviera, permitting it to always operate as a 9 carriage formation. (Assuming a Class 57 can handle that many carraiges and keep to time).

Phase 3 - Dispersal

There are people on this forum who are better able to determine how to disperse the 36 3-coach Turbostars, 13 2-coach Turbostars, 18 2-coach Express sprinters and remaining 110 trailer vehicles, so I will throw the floor open.
 
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Yew

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Could some shortened HST sets be used for the proposed 2 hourly Lincoln-London services?

However most of your ideas seem pretty good :)
 

Adam_Harrison

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Grand Central won't swap HSTs for 180s, I'm sure Wensley or Bosch can back me up on that! They would prefer to have a common fleet of Hsts and to strengthen them and the fact that the MPC for their HSTs are more than double the 180s :)
 

WatcherZero

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I think they would be most suitable for inter-regional journeys currently formed of doubled up Sprinters. Their remaining life would probably match that remaining in Sprinters too i.e. 5-7 years or so.
 

anthony263

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I wouldnt mind some short hst's with their mk3's fitted with powered doors being used on the Milford Haven - Manchester route.

Some hst's should be used by Crosscountry until more the network is wired such as Reading - Bassingstoke & Oxford - Coventry and new electric units ordered.
 

IanXC

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Interesting stuff, I would point out though that 13 of CrossCountry's 170s are 2 car.

The other thing to add in is that looking at these kind of timescales its not impossible to think that TPE's 9 170s might be surplus too.

I think what happens to this released stock then depends on 2 things; whether the Valley lines are electrified, and what the franchise map looks like. It would seem to make sense to continue the policy of concentrating stock types with specific operators, so the real question is, do we want the Northern franchise to receive a large fleet of 170s to replace its 142s?
 

Phil6219

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It seems to me to be a good idea, the only problem being that it's logical and that my friend is where it falls flat on it's arse... Railways these days don't do logical :p

I genuinely do like the ideas though, especially the thought of getting HSTs back in Manchester (and maybe getting shot of those damn XC voyagers from here too).

Phil 8-)
 

HSTEd

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Grand Central won't swap HSTs for 180s, I'm sure Wensley or Bosch can back me up on that! They would prefer to have a common fleet of Hsts and to strengthen them and the fact that the MPC for their HSTs are more than double the 180s :)

Oh.... I thought that the original and current problems were associated with the Class 180 were maintenance problems, firstly in them being different to anything else in use on Great Western and then due to the transfer of maintenance from Heaton to Old Oak Common and would likely fix themselves in due course.

The idea was to eliminate a pair of microfleets to reduce driver training costs (GC would only need to sign Class 180s and FGW would no longer have to).

Ofcourse there is no reason that FGW could not retain the Cl180s and GC have the 5 shortened sets in place of the three full length ones, or take nine of those surplus trailer vehicles to get 5 full length ones. (I don't know if all workings on GC are timed for HST use at the moment or if some use the DMU's superior acceleration?). Although transferring GC's remaining Cl180 fleet to FGW could cause all sorts of problems if they end up forced onto Plymouth workings.

At this point I would be hope that the operational benefits associated with a single uniform fleet of DMUs would drive them in that direction, especially if getting additional HSTs to replace the remaining DMUs proved to be troublesome.

WatcherZero said:
I think they would be most suitable for inter-regional journeys currently formed of doubled up Sprinters. Their remaining life would probably match that remaining in Sprinters too i.e. 5-7 years or so.

I think its probably longer than that... unless you mean from the DDA deadline, but I reckon they would likely have another decade in them atleast if they are well looked after.

anthony263 said:
I wouldnt mind some short hst's with their mk3's fitted with powered doors being used on the Milford Haven - Manchester route.

Some hst's should be used by Crosscountry until more the network is wired such as Reading - Bassingstoke & Oxford - Coventry and new electric units ordered.

I just chose Liverpool-Norwich because of its near continuous crush loadings and the fact that EMT already have a significant HST fleet so it would not create another microfleet. But if MML electrification actually occurs then additional sets become available for cascade which further increases the options for deploying them (although I admit the long distance Scottish services seem to be a good target for going all HST thanks to the long distances and relatively low train numbers available due to single line working).

I chose not to include electrification projects that I do not know to be commited to provide a baseline estimate of where we stand on Pacer replacement without any further electrification projects being committed to.
(Has TPE to Hull actually be commited at this point?)

IanXC said:
Interesting stuff, I would point out though that 13 of CrossCountry's 170s are 2 car.

The other thing to add in is that looking at these kind of timescales its not impossible to think that TPE's 9 170s might be surplus too.

I think what happens to this released stock then depends on 2 things; whether the Valley lines are electrified, and what the franchise map looks like. It would seem to make sense to continue the policy of concentrating stock types with specific operators, so the real question is, do we want the Northern franchise to receive a large fleet of 170s to replace its 142s?

Thanks, I have fixed that oversight with regards to the Cl170 numbers, (somehow I have never seen a two carriage XC Class 170 and thought it was just a theoretical thing when I noticed "omit central carriage on two coach trains" on the seating plan they provide on their website)

One idea I had was to deploy the majority of the Class 170s available in this plan onto SWT and use it to replace the entire Sprinter family fleet they have, giving us an effectively uniform fleet of Express Sprinters to cascade north, but since these trains do not have corridor connections this might cause issues with manning on the long formations that run from Waterloo to Salisbury, and less so on any longer formations that run on to Exeter.
However Southern does not appear to be unhappy with its fleet of 4 and 2 coach Turbostars and I do believe those are often run doubled up, so anyone got any thoughts on this?
The Turbostars would rid SWT of units with an annoying top speed of 90mph which fits neither on Southern Region slows or on the fasts and provide the aforementioned uniform fleet of Sprinters for further cascade.

Phil6219 said:
It seems to me to be a good idea, the only problem being that it's logical and that my friend is where it falls flat on it's arse... Railways these days don't do logical

I genuinely do like the ideas though, especially the thought of getting HSTs back in Manchester (and maybe getting shot of those damn XC voyagers from here too).

Phil

Unfortunately, or not depending on your opinion of Voyagrs, it is unlikely that they would be banished entirely from Manchester, especially since the idea of the cascade is to give XC a uniform fleet with 125mph capability and similar acceleration characteristics, allowing them to "play around" with unit posistions and the like across the entire network to allow them to tailor capacity to demand without resorting to slower accelerating full HSTs. (single 220 < single 221 < Short HST < double 220 < double 221).

Additionally, are there any unallocated Class 67s left and are those 12 redundant Class 90s still in store or have they been sold for scrap? Ditto are there any available Mark 3 DVTs remaining from the West Coast cascade or have they all be scrapped/returned to service?

EDIT: It would appear that there are more DVTs than could be possibly be needed to use up the remaining 84 trailers, so if motive power could be obtained they could be put into service as loco hauled formations (rewiring with new static converters could be undertaken during the rebuild at minimal cost).

I will endeavour to find places to put them.... assuming 12 working additional Class 90s can be obtained (ofcourse 90050 which is one of those put up for sale has been out of traffic since it burned in a fire and might be expensive to return to service).
 
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swt_passenger

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Use on services to Cornwall is not really a 'persistent rumour' though, because it is a declared policy stated in various NR and DfT publications.
 

HSTEd

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Use on services to Cornwall is not really a 'persistent rumour' though, because it is a declared policy stated in various NR and DfT publications.

I wasn't really sure if it was an actual policy or not, these things tend to get mixed up quite a lot, especially on the internet.
 

route:oxford

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5. Cascade 18 full length HST sets (2+8, 144 trailers) to ScotRail for operations on Edinburgh/Glasgow to Aberdeen, as well as some trains to Inverness. Journey times over the whole length of the route would be maintained by improvements to line speeds utilising additional HST differentials.
This would permit 20 3-carriage Cl170s to be released to the cascade pool. (The likely improved utilisation of the larger fleet of Turbostars rather than a smaller fleet of HSTs would be countered in that I believe atleast some Aberdeen-Edinburgh/Glasgow services run doubled up at the present time).

The trouble with this is Glasgow Queen Street. It's simply too small to take a "full length" HST. 2+6 would fit in at least one of the platforms though - but even then that is 23 (36) Metres of "wasted" potential passenger space.

There is the other issue. With timetabling so tight at Queen Street, I'm not sure if the acceleration of an HST would have a positive effect on movements into and out of the station. It's not as if there are a host of locos "sitting around" QS these days to give one a shove up Cowlairs (particularly in the event of a failed powercar).
 

Phil6219

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Not sure about the 90s, I'm positive that none so far have been scrapped (it would be a crying shame if they had). I can think of another loco class which works with DVTs (without modifications) and happens to have a fair number sat rotting away... The Class 86.

I should point out the cost to return these to service but since some are still being prepared to go to Bulgaria they must be worth the expense of restoring them. I'm sure the costs to restore the 90s back into mainline service is close to the mark given how long they have been out of action.

As for 67s I think that some are perhaps a tad under used so perhaps if they fiddled their workings around a it may be possible to make some spare...

Phil 8-)
 

ryan125hst

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It is definitely a good idea to cascade the HST's. After all, aren't the Mark 3's often regarded as the most comfortable rolling stock on the network?

I thought that cascading the class 170's and the 158's to Northern would be a good idea. I have just tried to work out how it would work. The Pacers and the 150/1's would be scrapped, the other Sprinters would work the shorter routes, the 170's, supplemented by new class 172's would work the medium distance routes and the 158's would continue to work the express routes.

Unfortunately, I got my numbers a bit wrong and ended up with nearly 100 more trains than they currently have! I'll have another go later and post it on here if I can sort it.

Do you think that this would be a good idea, given the fact that the Pacers are almost 30 years old and the new DDA means that they won't be able to be used soon?
 

tbtc

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Its a nice idea but HSTs are already 30/35 years old - the GWML won't be wired for another five years (roughly) - for knocking on 40 years old - and I presume that the OP's idea is to get a further decade (at least) out of them after the refurb etc... they aren't going to go on forever.

Plus there's a limit to how you can cascade units to slower services. Putting 125mph HSTs on routes like Norwich - Liverpool or Glasgow - Inverness (which are timed for 90mph 158s) may mean struggling with the acceleration/deceleration... same with putting 158/170s on "all stop" Pacer routes (which tends to be the conclusion of these kind of threads). Really, since we won't wire enough before the end of the decade we need a new build of 75mph DMUs designed for stop/start services, rather than cascading faster units down the "food chain".
 

ryan125hst

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Plus there's a limit to how you can cascade units to slower services. Putting 125mph HSTs on routes like Norwich - Liverpool or Glasgow - Inverness (which are timed for 90mph 158s) may mean struggling with the acceleration/deceleration... same with putting 158/170s on "all stop" Pacer routes (which tends to be the conclusion of these kind of threads). Really, since we won't wire enough before the end of the decade we need a new build of 75mph DMUs designed for stop/start services, rather than cascading faster units down the "food chain".

That is a good point, although I know that 158's are used on the Sheffield to Lincoln route with frequent stops and a line limit of about 55mph maximum. If it is a major problem, could some of them be re-geared to a top speed of 75mph. For the class 170's at least, this should be possible, as some of the similar 172's are geared for this. I'm sure it would be possible for the 158's as well.
 

Manchester77

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Hi all, I'm new to the forum and this topic. I don't know if this has been said yet but if they are going to reopen the Waverley Line could some HSTs be transferred to scotrail for us as 2+5. They could be used for express services. Just an idea. :D
 

HSTEd

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Thank's for that about Glasgow Queen Street... I always get it and Central mixed up, for some reason I thought the Aberdeen trains went into the same station as the Pendolinos......

Well Edinburgh-Aberdeen requires 5-6 sets, and Edinburgh-Inverness another 4.... so that takes us to ten sets plus spares without running one into Glasgow where it could cause problems... I will keep thinking about it.

Its a nice idea but HSTs are already 30/35 years old - the GWML won't be wired for another five years (roughly) - for knocking on 40 years old - and I presume that the OP's idea is to get a further decade (at least) out of them after the refurb etc... they aren't going to go on forever.
I expect 15 years after the 2020ish refurb actually, since that is apparently the number being discussed for HSTs remaining on the Cornwall services. It doesn't seem unreasonable since basically all that will be original will be the frames and body panels really. (And the bogies but you get what I mean).

Plus there's a limit to how you can cascade units to slower services. Putting 125mph HSTs on routes like Norwich - Liverpool or Glasgow - Inverness (which are timed for 90mph 158s) may mean struggling with the acceleration/deceleration... same with putting 158/170s on "all stop" Pacer routes (which tends to be the conclusion of these kind of threads). Really, since we won't wire enough before the end of the decade we need a new build of 75mph DMUs designed for stop/start services, rather than cascading faster units down the "food chain".

Liverpool-Norwich has substantial stretches of 110mph and 125mph running available to it, and the stop gaps are actually rather large for a Sprinter operated service. (And many of the slower sections have huge amounts of padding, for instance see Grantham-Nottingham).
As to Glasgow/Edinburgh - Inverness/Aberdeen, atleast in the later case, HSTs run that section every day and put in times that aren't that much slower than Sprinters, even though, especially on the Aberdeen route, they put in a similar number of stops to the DMU services.
With some modifications to the formations to allow increased speed running on some areas I believe that the HSTs can keep the current timetable or even improve it slightly.


Actually I was thinking about disposing of the Turbostars by cascading the bulk of them to SWT in return for the entire Express Sprinter/SW Turbo fleet they operate which could then be cascaded around to replace 156s/155/153s which are more suited to more suburban runs like those Pacers operate due to the lower top speed and the like.


Also, as to using Class 86s, unfortunately there is only one ~100mph operated 25kV overhead main line, and that is already equipped with Class 90s, I think the days of Class 86 operation are over. They are also rather short on power for modern main line passenger operations.
If however some Class 90s can be returned to service from store there is potential for loco hauled electric services from Manchester Airport-Scotland, especially as it would be possible for a feasible formation to have a superior power to weight ratio to a Cl350.

Anyone got any thoughts?

EDIT:
I have modded the ScotRail cascade to 10 full length (EDB-ABD/INV) and 8 2+5 shortened (Glasgow-ABD/INV) sets, this should hopefully allow the cascading of the previously stated 20 turbostar sets without causing any horrific problems at Glasgow Queen Street.
 
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tbtc

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That is a good point, although I know that 158's are used on the Sheffield to Lincoln route with frequent stops and a line limit of about 55mph maximum. If it is a major problem, could some of them be re-geared to a top speed of 75mph. For the class 170's at least, this should be possible, as some of the similar 172's are geared for this. I'm sure it would be possible for the 158's as well.

There's not many on the Lincoln line (mainly 142/144), but with Northern anything is possible! You do get 158s on the Sheffield - Dearne Valley - Leeds service (which is an all stops route unsuited to 158s).

Regearing them may be possible (I honestly don't know about 158s - I know there was talk of the Chiltern 172s being 75mph units to improve acceleration), but I guess you'd still be left with the 158 doors that take longer to load/unload than something like a 150.

Really, there are a lot of units with top speeds much too fast for the lines they run on - I guess that won't change.
 

LE Greys

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'The Great HST Cascade' was originally supposed to happen in the mid-'80s, when APT-S appeared, along with either 'APT-D' or 'APT-GT' on the WCML, ECML and GW routes. We would have had HSTs on Waterloo-Exeter, Liverpool Street-Norwich, Trans-Pennine and various Scottish routes.

Now, I'm not sure about implementing this in full, but some of it is a good idea. The trick would be finding somewhere where acceleration is not a major problem, and 125 running without tilt is possible. That limits it to routes involving the ECML and NE-SW cross-country. Trans-Pennine is less likely, although I'd like to see cascaded Voyagers making an appearance on the routes that don't get electrified, allowing the 180s to go somewhere else, probably Salisbury for compatibility with SWT's other Desiro stock and to release 159s for cascade, although this requires some work on upgrading (and re-dualling) the route. GC, who once wanted Chinese 'Polaris' stock, might well accept an HST cascade, HT is another possibility.
 

Simon11

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This looks good with regards to solving overcrowding but what is the cost to the industry for all this casading?
 

ainsworth74

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This looks good with regards to solving overcrowding but what is the cost to the industry for all this casading?

Training guards and drivers on the new stock, training depot staff to maintain the stock, refurbishing the stock to extend its life for another ten or so years, possibly higher leasing costs and also possibly higher maintenance costs (these HSTs aren't young ya know!).
 

John55

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This kind of “what if” thread is highly entertaining but I wonder if this one in particular has forgotten one key aspect of rolling stock usage, how much does it cost?

The HST was designed 40 years ago for use on key Inter-City routes like Cardiff/Bristol - London and Newcastle/Leeds – London. These routes were (and remain to some extent) premium fare business routes, which can generate a lot of money from passengers for fast journeys to key business centres. Over time other routes used HSTs but the number built was much less than BR ever envisaged in some of the cascade programmes published in the 70s and 80s because the train was too expensive for most routes. By the late 1980s BR was designing the class 158s for routes that were thought to be candidates for HST use in earlier times.

It is only 10 years ago that a significant number of HSTs were effectively dumped out of use around the country while the DMU fleet was fully utilised and new DMUs were being built rather than bringing HSTs back into use.

Things changed for the dumped HSTs because of the remarkable and entirely unexpected growth in passenger traffic over the last 15 years that has created a shortage of rolling stock so the unwanted HSTs have been brought back into use mainly by FGW for the burgeoning commuter traffic into London. This is possible because commuting into London from the GW commands high prices for long distances.

Now to look at one suggestion it is proposed to replace 2 x 2 car Class 158s between Liverpool and Norwich with 2 + 7 HSTs. What is the cost of this likely to be? Replacing a 150 ton, 1400 hp train with a 390 ton 4500hp train is going to be expensive in every possible way. Can the traffic on the route support such a change? I for one doubt it. This route has significant commuter traffic but this is typically Warrington to Manchester and Sheffield to Manchester, which does not generate anything like the cash of long distance commuting into London. The off peak traffic although buoyant doesn’t stretch the 4 car 158s in my experience.

Four years ago EMT published details of passenger counts on this route and only 2 out of 26 journeys during Monday - Thursdays recorded 100+ passengers east of Nottingham, on Fridays it was 6 out of 27. None of these journeys had as many as 150 passengers.

On the busiest section of the route between Liverpool and Manchester the highest recorded load was 421 (3 times any other train) arriving into Manchester at 08:40 or so. The busiest trains the other way held 200 - 300 passengers. Even on the notorious Manchester – Sheffield section it was only on Friday afternoon that loads exceeded the capacity of a 2 car Class 158. These high loads largely generated by discount student travel.

Now it is possible that these figures are 20% higher now due to general growth and very recently by more trains being available but it doesn’t sound to me like a recipe for success to use expensive trains to provide excessive capacity on this route. I expect most other routes suggested will suffer from the same problems.
 

HSTEd

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The widespread availability of Advance Purchase yield managed fares has thrown everything into doubt with regards supressed demand and the like.
The most expensive things in today's train operations are the path itself (and likely to become pricier as the network overloads to ever greater extent), staffing (staff are expensive) and capital cost of the units.

Passenger train paths seem to scale nonlinearly in price with train length/weight, leaving heavier trains cheaper per tonne than lighter ones (so it should be, a line can carry just as many heavy as light trains per hour if they have similar acceleration curves).

A 2+7 HST does have several advantages over a 4 carriage Cl158, as the former can seat ~578 in a DDA compliant single class configuration with two disabled and five regular toilets.
Such a train requires only two crew, so 289 seats per crewmember.
A pair of 2 coach Cl158s in a DDA compliant configuration will probably seat... at best ~245 because you will still need two disabled toilets and two regular ones (and even cutting the regular toilets entirely gets you a grand total of 16 seats).
Such a train still requires two crew, so your staff costs per seat available are half the 158 with the HST.

Additionally the HSTs will have effectively equivalent capital cost per vehicle to the Cl158s since both trains will be valued at scrap plus the cost of the rebuilds they will require. This means that capital costs are far lower than they were in the day of BR, which reduces the problems with cost of operations to which you allude.

All this means it is not clear what sort of price you would have to sell the extra tickets at on average to leave you in a better posistion than you would otherwise be in running the 4 class 158s. Especially as the rebuild is likely to be cheaper than the capital costs of ordering new units 15 years earlier, (even Networker Classic, a far more extensive reconstruction was costed at only 25% the cost of new units).
 

RichmondCommu

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Liverpool-Norwich has substantial stretches of 110mph and 125mph running available to it, and the stop gaps are actually rather large for a Sprinter operated service. (And many of the slower sections have huge amounts of padding, for instance see Grantham-Nottingham).

Really? Are you sure? With the exception of the ECML everything else is 75 to 90 mph as far as I know. I'm pretty certain that the Erewash and Hope Valley lines are nothing like 110 mph routes!
 

HSTEd

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Really? Are you sure? With the exception of the ECML everything else is 75 to 90 mph as far as I know. I'm pretty certain that the Erewash and Hope Valley lines are nothing like 110 mph routes!

Oops, my mistake, I thought Manchester-Stockport and Sheffield-Chesterfield were actually 125mph routes :|

Erewash valley is 100mph I thought however.

And the Grantham-Peterborough section saves 13 minutes alone from having 125mph running available, and if 125mph stock is available HST100 differentials on the Breckland Line and the like simply require remedial trackwork since the signalling has apparently been sighted to allow it.

The Eastern part of the route would really benefit from drastically reduced journey times.
 

RichmondCommu

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Oops, my mistake, I thought Manchester-Stockport and Sheffield-Chesterfield were actually 125mph routes :|

Erewash valley is 100mph I thought however.

And the Grantham-Peterborough section saves 13 minutes alone from having 125mph running available, and if 125mph stock is available HST100 differentials on the Breckland Line and the like simply require remedial trackwork since the signalling has apparently been sighted to allow it.

The Eastern part of the route would really benefit from drastically reduced journey times.

I would be very surprised if anything gets above 75 mph on the Erewash Valley line. However Network Rail are improving the MML (there was another post on the Clay Cross tunnell being raised to 110) but I appreciate that is south of Chesterfield.
 

HSTEd

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I would be very surprised if anything gets above 75 mph on the Erewash Valley line. However Network Rail are improving the MML (there was another post on the Clay Cross tunnell being raised to 110) but I appreciate that is south of Chesterfield.

Erewash is listed in the route plan (Route I - London and East Midlands) as having a ruling line speed of 80-105mph.
(It is the route between Chesterfield and Nottingham right so I'm not confusing things?)
 

John55

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The widespread availability of Advance Purchase yield managed fares has thrown everything into doubt with regards supressed demand and the like.
The most expensive things in today's train operations are the path itself (and likely to become pricier as the network overloads to ever greater extent), staffing (staff are expensive) and capital cost of the units.

Passenger train paths seem to scale nonlinearly in price with train length/weight, leaving heavier trains cheaper per tonne than lighter ones (so it should be, a line can carry just as many heavy as light trains per hour if they have similar acceleration curves).

A 2+7 HST does have several advantages over a 4 carriage Cl158, as the former can seat ~578 in a DDA compliant single class configuration with two disabled and five regular toilets.
Such a train requires only two crew, so 289 seats per crewmember.
A pair of 2 coach Cl158s in a DDA compliant configuration will probably seat... at best ~245 because you will still need two disabled toilets and two regular ones (and even cutting the regular toilets entirely gets you a grand total of 16 seats).
Such a train still requires two crew, so your staff costs per seat available are half the 158 with the HST.

Additionally the HSTs will have effectively equivalent capital cost per vehicle to the Cl158s since both trains will be valued at scrap plus the cost of the rebuilds they will require. This means that capital costs are far lower than they were in the day of BR, which reduces the problems with cost of operations to which you allude.

All this means it is not clear what sort of price you would have to sell the extra tickets at on average to leave you in a better posistion than you would otherwise be in running the 4 class 158s. Especially as the rebuild is likely to be cheaper than the capital costs of ordering new units 15 years earlier, (even Networker Classic, a far more extensive reconstruction was costed at only 25% the cost of new units).

I understand that track access charges are based on a pence/mile/vehicle. The only ones I know are the variable track access charges for 2009 – 2010. These quote charges for a Class 43 at 28.18p/m, a Mk3 coach at 6.53p/m and a Cl 158 coach at 6.07p/m. So for a 2+7 HST = 102.07p/m and for a 2 car Cl 158 =12.14p/m (or 24.18 for a 4 car). Now these may not be the actual figures that EMT pay as you would need access to the confidential bits of the franchise agreements to know this but they will be indicative.

The current timetable needs 7980 train.miles/day for the Liverpool – Norwich service (excluding ECS) including the short journeys mainly to Nottingham. So with a bit of math and assuming the service runs 6 days per week and 50 weeks per year we can calculate it will cost £1,862,292.60 extra to run 2 + 7 HSTs in place of 4 car Class 158s. In fact it would be greater than that as most trains on most of the route are currently only 2 cars.

If we then add the unknown cost of fuel, maintenance and leasing charges it easy to see the additional cost of operating HSTs on this route is going to be huge.

I fail to see the advantage of a 2 + 7 HST having 578 seats when the typical passenger count south/east of Nottingham 4 years ago was less than 60 passengers with a maximum of 140. Even west of Nottingham 578 seats would be far in excess of the requirement for the highest loaded train.

Frankly it would seem in the next 10 to 15 years the best option for EMT or their successors would be to try to swop some of their 2 car 158s for some 3 car 158s so they can increase the capacity of the busier trains and not over supply the less busy ones.
 

Intercity

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25 Apr 2010
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talk of the HST's being over the hill at 35/40 or even 50 years old is silly, people are just using their pre-concieved ideas of how long stock should last,

saying "the pacers are only 30 years and they're going to be scrapped so why not the Mk 3's" is like saying that a caravan only lasts 15 years so we should tear down all houses that are 15 years old.

the mk 3's were built so well that there's no reason why they couldn't be used up until 2050. they'e still the most comfortable stock and still safe so i can't see any reason at all to scrap, you shouldn't just scrap something because its old.

The B-52 bombers will be 90 years old by the time they're scrapped.
 
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