Railways in General
#41
RE: Railways in General
Route of the Great Central recreated.

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-notti...e-37320821
'Illegitimis non carborundum'

#42
RE: Railways in General
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-37638802

Changes to delay repay kick-in.
'Illegitimis non carborundum'

#43
RE: Railways in General
http://www.ncl.ac.uk/cegs.cpd/cpd/railways.php

Newcastle Uni are hosting a range of CPD courses for those working in or looking to work in the rail sector.
'Illegitimis non carborundum'

#44
RE: Railways in General
Little iPlayer watch:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b08...our-trains

Aircraft flown on:

744, 77W, 772, E145, E190, E170, E175, E195, A319, A320, A320NEO, A321, A321NEO, A330-200, A340-600 763, 752, 733, 737, 738, CRJ900, CRJ1000
Favourite aircraft: G-STBL/G-ZBKL


#45
Railways in General
Got issued with a new paper tickets on my Northern service to Darlington this morning, not impressed with them. Got a return so the ticket is one long strip, seriously it's like a roll of wallpaper! Because it's a return I have to keep the ticket all day and not lose it which is probably going to be easier said than done, took me ages to find somewhere to put it on my person, eventually rolled it up and put it in the section for notes in my wallet.

#46
RE: Railways in General
(07 Nov 2016, 9:45 pm)8222 Wrote: Little iPlayer watch:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b08...our-trains

Oh joy! Usually about twice per year these sort of 'documentaries' appear.
Lots and lots of blunders. Can't resist having a dig at the Pacers (whereby no mention of the new units being built and others cascaded was said, funny that!), of course lots of anger at Southern for recent events (in turn to the unions rightly stepping up and fighting back the dangerous removal of guards on trains) and shock horror, trains in/out of London at peak times are often busy! :O :O
Very small section on Crossrail (obviously that is a solution to a problem so cannot be given much airtime) but surely that shows that the Government is concerned and actioning various things to relieve the stress on the railway?

Of course, as mentioned, most of these issues end up to DfT. So contrary to everyone's rants and ravings saying how useless TOCs are (even featuring a ludicrous 'Bring Back British Rail' march at one of the London termini by clueless people who think passenger numbers will instantly fall to BR days levels) it's not their direct fault. As an aside in my opinion the last thing the railways need is nationalisation.

Apparently GWR has the last "dining car" left in the UK too! Funny that really when all of the long-distance London based TOCs have 1st class dining too.
Oh and lastly, for a programme made in November 2016 the changes from April 2016 with franchise names were not even considered. The Abellio Greater Anglia logo flashed up (now just Greater Anglia) as well as Northern Rail being mentioned several times.


Note all points above are my opinion. Big Grin
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#47
RE: Railways in General
Totally happy to say I'm with Southern on that particular kerfuffle. There's some specific examples of them handling the situation badly, but overall they're not any worse than the unions. I wouldn't mind RMT coming out to say they're just job-protecting but it's silly to hide behind unfounded safety claims.

#48
RE: Railways in General
(20 Nov 2016, 1:48 am)James101 Wrote: Totally happy to say I'm with Southern on that particular kerfuffle. There's some specific examples of them handling the situation badly, but overall they're not any worse than the unions. I wouldn't mind RMT coming out to say they're just job-protecting but it's silly to hide behind unfounded safety claims.

DOO is not the way forward. Any number of things can happen on a train; fully-trained guards carry out the protection of the train in some circumstances. This leaves someone on the train to look after passengers. 
Remove this guard and everything then goes down to the driver - hardly more safe?

In the recent derailment at Watford Junction luckily these services were not DOO so passengers were seen and treated promptly by the guard whilst the driver did all other necessary tasks - ordinarily these would have come before passenger safety.
Ask yourself this. If a driver becomes incapacitated, such as the recent incident at Barking where a driver sadly died, it was only down to another train nearby stopping to check and investigate. Had a guard been on board things would've happened much faster and potentially his life could have been saved.

Operation of train doors (this seems to be the only 'petty' thing that the media love to report on because they're 100% unbiased) is a task that is safer in the hands of a guard - it's only natural that the driver is in charge of driving the train; not continuously checking to see if anyone is trying to make the train they've just missed, slipping and ending up underneath it. A guard would see this, shout to stand back, or if something unfortunate happens, stop the train.

Removing all of this for the sake of cost cutting is absolutely ludicrous; as well as putting dozens of people out of jobs (or degrading their workers' rights which have been hard earned) needlessly.
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#49
RE: Railways in General
(20 Nov 2016, 1:48 am)James101 Wrote: Totally happy to say I'm with Southern on that particular kerfuffle. There's some specific examples of them handling the situation badly, but overall they're not any worse than the unions. I wouldn't mind RMT coming out to say they're just job-protecting but it's silly to hide behind unfounded safety claims.

Southern are piss poor, and their employee relations strategy leaves a lot to be desired. But I agree - it's about protecting jobs, which is a good thing!

I'm yet to see any statistical evidence, which suggests the safety of a train is compromised, if it doesn't have a guard on board.
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#50
RE: Railways in General
(20 Nov 2016, 9:58 am)northern156 Wrote: DOO is not the way forward. Any number of things can happen on a train; fully-trained guards carry out the protection of the train in some circumstances. This leaves someone on the train to look after passengers. 
Remove this guard and everything then goes down to the driver - hardly more safe?

In the recent derailment at Watford Junction luckily these services were not DOO so passengers were seen and treated promptly by the guard whilst the driver did all other necessary tasks - ordinarily these would have come before passenger safety.
Ask yourself this. If a driver becomes incapacitated, such as the recent incident at Barking where a driver sadly died, it was only down to another train nearby stopping to check and investigate. Had a guard been on board things would've happened much faster and potentially his life could have been saved.

Operation of train doors (this seems to be the only 'petty' thing that the media love to report on because they're 100% unbiased) is a task that is safer in the hands of a guard - it's only natural that the driver is in charge of driving the train; not continuously checking to see if anyone is trying to make the train they've just missed, slipping and ending up underneath it. A guard would see this, shout to stand back, or if something unfortunate happens, stop the train.

Removing all of this for the sake of cost cutting is absolutely ludicrous; as well as putting dozens of people out of jobs (or degrading their workers' rights which have been hard earned) needlessly.

Southern aren't proposing to go DOO - they're proposing to downgrade the guard's role to customer care assistant. This would remove operational duties such as door operation but they would remain onboard to assist in any emergency/first aid situation. Of course this reclassification would mean a change in pay and conditions for those who are currently guards. It's the RMT's purpose to campaign against such changes but they're hiding behind safety issues in order to win public favour as passengers wouldn't stand for so many unreasonable strikes when every other sector in the economy has faced cost-cutting already. 

The link you provide is as much an argument for DDO as against it. In the most extreme of circumstances, the process in place worked - the train stopped itself and so were others around it and a person was sent to investigate. It's pure speculation to suggest the driver could have saved by a guard's presence. But while we're talking about c2c; they're the holder of a British Safety Council Sword of Honour - not bad for a guard-less operation. 
https://www.c2c-online.co.uk/about-us/la...d-for-c2c/

#51
RE: Railways in General
(20 Nov 2016, 11:36 am)James101 Wrote: Southern aren't proposing to go DOO - they're proposing to downgrade the guard's role to customer care assistant. This would remove operational duties such as door operation but they would remain onboard to assist in any emergency/first aid situation. Of course this reclassification would mean a change in pay and conditions for those who are currently guards. It's the RMT's purpose to campaign against such changes but they're hiding behind safety issues in order to win public favour as passengers wouldn't stand for so many unreasonable strikes when every other sector in the economy has faced cost-cutting already. 

The link you provide is as much an argument for DDO as against it. In the most extreme of circumstances, the process in place worked - the train stopped itself and so were others around it and a person was sent to investigate. It's pure speculation to suggest the driver could have saved by a guard's presence. But while we're talking about c2c; they're the holder of a British Safety Council Sword of Honour - not bad for a guard-less operation. 
https://www.c2c-online.co.uk/about-us/la...d-for-c2c/


As you say the wrong thing here is losing pay and T&Cs that have been fought for.
I really cannot believe how anyone can think drivers operating doors is safer than a guard being 100% focussed on it (ie not driving a train) who can then stop the train should anything go pear shaped with dispatch, as what occasionally happens.

Regarding c2c - yeah it's a good thing trains nearby were stopped, brilliant! But what if it was the last train of the day with no others about? Having a guard on board means you've always got another member of staff nearby. Not pure chance that there was one two minutes ahead.
Yes the poor driver did die but after what was inevitably minutes of cardiac arrest. Had a guard been there to carry out CPR, or make an announcement for anyone trained in First Aid on the train to make themselves known - undoubtedly in less time than it was for everything to be arranged through the signaller, it could have been a better outcome; not worse.
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#52
RE: Railways in General
(20 Nov 2016, 11:36 am)James101 Wrote: Southern aren't proposing to go DOO - they're proposing to downgrade the guard's role to customer care assistant. This would remove operational duties such as door operation but they would remain onboard to assist in any emergency/first aid situation. Of course this reclassification would mean a change in pay and conditions for those who are currently guards. It's the RMT's purpose to campaign against such changes but they're hiding behind safety issues in order to win public favour as passengers wouldn't stand for so many unreasonable strikes when every other sector in the economy has faced cost-cutting already. 

The link you provide is as much an argument for DDO as against it. In the most extreme of circumstances, the process in place worked - the train stopped itself and so were others around it and a person was sent to investigate. It's pure speculation to suggest the driver could have saved by a guard's presence. But while we're talking about c2c; they're the holder of a British Safety Council Sword of Honour - not bad for a guard-less operation. 
https://www.c2c-online.co.uk/about-us/la...d-for-c2c/

I used C2C a number of times over the summer.
Whilst I didn't feel threatened at any point on my trips, I can see how and why some passengers may feel they could be in some circumstances. 

Whilst there have been incidents on trains with staff on board, that extra body will provide that element of reassurance I am sure.

Re Sword of Honour. Is that specific to depots/offices or does it include the rolling stock operations too?
'Illegitimis non carborundum'

#53
RE: Railways in General
(20 Nov 2016, 6:59 pm)northern156 Wrote: As you say the wrong thing here is losing pay and T&Cs that have been fought for.
I really cannot believe how anyone can think drivers operating doors is safer than a guard being 100% focussed on it (ie not driving a train) who can then stop the train should anything go pear shaped with dispatch, as what occasionally happens.

Regarding c2c - yeah it's a good thing trains nearby were stopped, brilliant! But what if it was the last train of the day with no others about? Having a guard on board means you've always got another member of staff nearby. Not pure chance that there was one two minutes ahead.
Yes the poor driver did die but after what was inevitably minutes of cardiac arrest. Had a guard been there to carry out CPR, or make an announcement for anyone trained in First Aid on the train to make themselves known - undoubtedly in less time than it was for everything to be arranged through the signaller, it could have been a better outcome; not worse.

With regard to door operation - surely the driver can be fully focused on door operation because the train is immobilised while the doors are open? Similarly the doors must be locked in order for the driver to move the train, by which point the driver can focus on driving. They never drive while operating doors and vice versa. While there is a logic to the argument two pairs of eyes are better than one - but it's entirely possible right now there are more train dispatches performed only by the driver than with a guard (factoring in DOO rail, light rail such as Metro and various tram systems). 

Finally back to the c2c incident - your argument could be reversed to say guards are at risk of becoming critically ill while alone in the rear cab where it could be a long time before they are discovered. Therefore it's safer not to have guards on the train. The sad incident is thankfully a rare occurrence which could have had a different outcome according to an infinite amount of variables - I don't think it holds much weight either way in the DOO argument.

#54
RE: Railways in General
(20 Nov 2016, 7:59 pm)Andreos1 Wrote: I used C2C a number of times over the summer.
Whilst I didn't feel threatened at any point on my trips, I can see how and why some passengers may feel they could be in some circumstances. 

Whilst there have been incidents on trains with staff on board, that extra body will provide that element of reassurance I am sure.

Re Sword of Honour. Is that specific to depots/offices or does it include the rolling stock operations too?

Really not sure about the coverage of the award - can't find any further detail online. 

On a separate note, another article on their press section made me smile:
https://www.c2c-online.co.uk/about-us/la...assengers/

First trains in over a decade?! Bah! Try having 142s for 30 years! Wink

#55
RE: Railways in General
Like many of us, if I'm off on an leisure outing I'll try to visit some more obscure reaches of the public transport network. Today I ventured to the rather forgotten train station of Barlaston in Staffordshire. I use the word 'forgotten' carefully as the station isn't disused, derelict or even closed - indeed I bought a ticket to travel there today (£2.10 for a 7 mile journey - bargain!). What's unusual about Barlaston is that no trains have called at the station for 12 years. Services were temporarily suspended in 2004 to allow for modernisation work to the WCML and they were simply never started again. 
 
The particular journey I made was from Stoke-on-Trent*, I used a self-service machine to purchase my ticket. The machine, however, failed to mention that no such train journey existed. I checked the departure boards for a mention of Barlaston, nothing there. Perhaps the more thorough printed timetables would point me in the right direction - nope. I'm beginning to think someone doesn't want the traveling public to use Barlaston station.
 
Good job I'd done my research in advance. I would, in fact, be making my journey on D&G Bus's service 14 which runs hourly between Hanley (Stoke-on-Trent) to Stafford. The replacement bus service itself has gone though some evolution itself. Between 2004 and 2011 it was numbered as the rather grand 'X1' with then-new Omnicities with clear branding which shouted out to the world this was London Midland's way of keeping the service to Barlaston alive and running until WCML modernisation work was complete. Between 2011 and 2014 the service was passed to First who re-hashed the route as an awkward bi-hourly extension of an otherwise frequent city route. This was the end of dedicated replacement service and doubled the journey time from the marooned station to the nearest city from 20 to 40 minutes. It would seem this was the start of a 'closure by stealth' campaign by the train operating company. Could it be that London Midland are fulfilling their contractual obligation to serve Barlaston by only providing an obscure bus service – thus driving down passenger numbers and making it easier to justify an eventual full closure? I would suggest the total lack of any suggestion the service even exists when standing in a station on the replacement’s route is alarming.
 
I had expected a bit more interest from the bus driver as I presented my rail ticket, he barely read it as he waved me on. It could have been a seat reservation coupon for all he knew. The current route 14 is the result of a bit of joined-up thinking by D&G of North Staffordshire. The northern part of the route is derived from a council supported service which links a business park with the city centre which justifies the use of the city-owned Versas which feature black e-leather seating and laminate flooring. The middle part of the route connects Barlaston to the nearest active rail stations. The final part of the route links various villages with the County Town of Stafford. While I think the final part of the route is operated commercially, it would seem it’s existence is only justified by the efficiencies of the supported bits. 
 
It’s an incredibly complex process to close a train station – it’s for this reason there are still two trains per week to Teesside Airport. I find it bizarre that a replacement bus can run for 12 years and seemingly nobody in charge of planning such things seems to be concerned. The regulation of station operation is in essence a good thing – it stops commercial operators cutting services to increase profits, as per the bus industry. There are, however, clear loopholes such as the Baraslton situation which need investigating.
 
*Bit of useless trivia about Stoke-on-Trent station. The station, as you would expect, is within the boundary of Stoke-on-Trent, but it is a 20 minute walk from the city centre – which goes by the name of ‘Hanley’ rather than ‘Stoke City Centre’. In the opposite direction from the station is the town of Stoke (which resembles Peterlee but without all the glamour), which is in Stoke-on-Trent city, but is not the city centre. Confused? Everyone else is.

#56
RE: Railways in General
http://actionforrail.org/day-of-action-o...ailripoff/

Protests to go ahead at stations following price increases.
'Illegitimis non carborundum'

#57
RE: Railways in General
Work to the bridge at Sedgefield Station that carries the A689 over the Stillington Line is to commence from 14th Jan for approx 6 weeks.
I initially wondered it may have been more to do with the development of the Stillington Line, but it appears not.
'Illegitimis non carborundum'

#58
RE: Railways in General
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-38641566

Which? survey results out.
'Illegitimis non carborundum'

#59
RE: Railways in General
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-38867199

Select Committee announces franchising isn't working and passengers aren't seeing the competition ministers hoped for.
'Illegitimis non carborundum'

#60
RE: Railways in General
https://www.sun-fm.com/news/local/232761...this-man-/

Station is literally a dump!
'Illegitimis non carborundum'