The Anonymous Widower

Crossrail’s Class 345 Trains Are Not Suburban Trumdlers

Over the last couple of days, I’ve had several trips on Class 345 trains, running to Hayes & Harlington station.

  • I found that I was able to time the trains at almost 80 mph in places.
  • They don’t seem to go this fast to Shenfield.
  • Wikipedia says the maximum speed of the trains are 90 mph.

I would not be surprised to see 90 mph cruising on some of the longer stretches between stations towards Reading.

This will surely mean that when Crossrail opens to Reading, the Crossrail service with all its stops might not be the slowest way to travel between Reading and London.

Consider.

  • Some Class 800 trains do the trip in as fast as 26 minutes.
  • Class 387 trains do the trip with eight stops in 56 minutes.
  • Most Crossrail Class 345 trains from Reading To Paddington will have fourteen stops.
  • In the Peak, two Class 345 trains in each hour, will take just five stops.

Although the Class 387 are modern trains, they probably don’t have the performance and certainly don’t have the digital signalling of the Class 345 trains.

I suspect that even with fourteen stops, the Class 345 trains will still do the journey in under an hour, when Crossrail is completed.

I suspect that many travellers between Reading and London will be changing their routes.

Crossrail To Reading In December 2019

It is rumoured that Crossrail will open to Reading in December 2019, with all services terminating at Paddington in Brunel’s station.

I believe that the Class 345 trains will be able to provide a high-capacity service between Paddington and Reading, which will complement the faster and mostly non-stop Great Western Railway services.

April 20, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Hayes & Harlington Station – 19th April 2019

These pictures show Hayes & Harlington station.

It will be an important station.

  • There is still a lot of work to do for the station to look like the picture on the hoarding.
  • There are a lot of residential development in the area, including the conversion of an old office block, where I once worked to flats.
  • It will be a step-free interchange for local passengers from the West to Heathrow.

The station and the new bay platform are already fully operational.

Crossrail To Reading In December 2019

As current rumours are that Crossrail will open in December to Reading, it looks like the station will be usable.

It is planned that Hayes & Harlington station will have a train every six minutes.

April 20, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Southall Station – 19th April 2019

These pictures show Southall station.

The station still needs the new footbridge to be installed and lifts from the station buildings to the platforms.

It appears that there will be a Crossrail train every six minutes  all day in both directions.

The Missing Footbridge

This picture was taken on July 4th, 2016.

Note the footbridge across the station, that doesn’t appear in the pictures I took today.

This picture, that I took today, clearly shows blue barriers around places where the footbridge might be installed on the two island platforms.

Is it a replacement bridge over the station  being installed, or is it just a footbridge connecting the platforms?

Or could it be for both purposes?

Preparing For The Brentford Branch

This map from carto.metro.free.fr shows the layout of lines at Southall station.

Note.

  1. The pair of lines at the top  in blue are Crossrail
  2. The pair of lines in the middle are the fast lines.
  3. The single line going off to the East is the Brentford Branch Line, which has been proposed for reopening.

It would appear that the layout of the footbridge and the lifts would give good access to the Southernmost platform, which is connected to the Brentford Branch line.

So it looks like, that after the station has been refurbished and made step-free, connecting the Brentford Branch line would not be difficult.

As the Brentford Branch is only four miles long, a modern train like a Class 230, Class 710 or a Class 321 Hydrogen train,  could do two round trips per hour between Southall and Brentford stations.

Crossrail To Reading In December 2019

As current rumours are that Crossrail will open in December to Reading, it looks like the station will be usable.

It is planned that Southall station will have a train every six minutes.

April 19, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , | 1 Comment

Hanwell Station – 19th April 2019

These pictures show Hanwell station.

Hanwell station will be unlike any other station on Crossrail.

  • It is Grade II Listed.
  • It doesn’t have a high passenger usage.
  • Platforms will be too short for the Class 345 trains and selected door opening will be used.
  • The stairs up to the platforms must be some of the most Victorian in any station.
  • To complete the station, two lifts are to be installed on the Crossrail platforms.

I do wonder if it could become a tourist attraction for those interests in modern metros and Victorian architecture.

Crossrail To Reading In December 2019

As current rumours are that Crossrail will open in December to Reading, it looks like the station will be ready in all its Victorian splendour..

It is planned that Hanwell station will have a train every ten minutes.

April 19, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , , | Leave a comment

Ealing Broadway Station – 19th April 2019

These pictures show Ealing Broadway station.

There’s still a lot of work to be done, to make the station, look like Crossrail’s image on the hoarding.

These are the proposed train frequencies at the station in the Off Peak, when Crossrail opens.

  • Four trains per hour – Great Western Railway.
  • Ten trains per hour – Crossrail.
  • Six trains per hour – District Line
  • Nine trains per hour – Central Line

There will be extra services in the Peak.

Crossrail To Reading In December 2019

As current rumours are that Crossrail will open in December to Reading, it looks like the station will be usable, if the architects have got the design right.

It is planned that Ealing Broadway station will have a Crossrail train every six minutes.

 

April 19, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Chihuly At Kew Gardens

April 19, 2019 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

Network Rail Footbridge Design Ideas Competition Display At Waterloo Station

As I passed through Waterloo station, yesterday, I happened upon, this display of the designs for the Network Rail Footbridge Design Ideas Competition.

If you are interested in design or have movement difficulties at times on the UK rail network, and regularly pass through the station, it is worth taking a look.

April 19, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Mayor Drops Plans To Close London Overground Ticket Offices

The title of this post is the same as that of this article on the BBC.

This is the first two paragraphs.

The Mayor of London has dropped plans to close ticket offices at 51 London Overground stations.

Busy stations will continue to operate as usual, though many will have opening hours reduced to just two-and-a-half hours per day, City Hall said.

Although the Unions objected to the Mayor’s original plans and this has probably prompted the Mayor’s U-turn, I think that staff in ticket offices will disappear within perhaps five years.

The only time, I see anyone use the Ticket Office at Dalston Junction station, is probably to sort out a ticketing issue with the machines, which are becoming increasingly rare, as Transport for London are increasing their numbers and replacing older machines with better designs.

Also as Dalston Junction is a busy station, there is usually someone manning the gate-line, who can help.

But over the next few years, the following will happen.

  • More and more passengers will use contactless ticketing with bank cards.
  • Contactless ticketing will expand widely, so that for most journeys in the UK, you would just touch-in and touch-out.
  • Oyster will cease to be used and be withdrawn.
  • Gateline technology will get better.
  • Staff working on the gateline and platforms, will be better equipped with mobile technology to sort out problems.
  • Ticket machines will develop into sophisticated multi-language help points.
  • Cash will disappear from daily life and stations.
  • Train companies will continue to be short of drivers and will look for other staff that can be retrained.

On a related note, increasingly, London Underground and Overground are being targeted by organised gangs of beggars. This means they need more staff on the gateline to control the problem.

I can see a time, when working in a ticket office will be a very lonely and boring job, that no-one will want to do.

So like the dinosaurs, they will just die out!

 

 

April 19, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Balloons On The Line Blamed For £1m Worth Of Train Delays

The title of this post, is the same as this article in The Times

This is the first two paragraphs.

Families have been told to stop bringing helium-filled balloons into railway stations after they were blamed for delays that cost the network £1 million a year.

In the latest version of “leaves on the line”, Network Rail said there were 619 “balloon-related incidents” across Britain in the past 12 months.

Liverstock farmers don’t like them either, as they fall into fields and get eaten.

I don’t like banning things, but surely some regulation and sensible rules are needed.

 

April 19, 2019 Posted by | Transport, World | , , | Leave a comment

Scotrail Boss Pledges More Seats And Stops On Borders Railway

The title of this post is the same as that of this article on the Southern Reporter.

If you live near or use the Borders Railway, I suggest you read the article.

Alex Hynes, who is Managing Director of ScotRail has promised.

  • Three-car Class 170 trains will replace the current two-car trains.
  • More drivers will be trained.
  • Extra stops including at Stow will be added to services.
  • In 2015, in the Peak, there were 850 seats out of Edinburgh. After the new trains are introduced, there will be 1,400.

He also said that things would happen in months not years.

This is a paragraph from the article, as spoken by Alex Hynes.

The three-carriage Class 170 trains accelerate and brake more quickly that the current two-carriage trains. That means we can put a stop at Stow in all the time without it affecting our performance, but to do that we need Class 170 trains on the route all the time and to be able to make sure that stop doesn’t affect our service performance.

It’s a good explanation of why you need fast trains on stopping services.

There is also something that is worth noting about the Class 170 trains.

Currently, they are diesel trains with a hydraulic transmission. But Porterbrook, who are the leasing company, who actually own the trains, are planning to test a new diesel-electric hybrid system in 2020, that will increase the performance of the trains, in terms of speed, acceleration, noise and emission.

I wrote about this important upgrade in Rolls-Royce And Porterbrook Launch First Hybrid Rail Project In The UK With MTU Hybrid PowerPacks.

I will be watching this development with interest, as if it is successful, passengers, residents, train companies and staff will benefit.

 

April 19, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , | Leave a comment