The Anonymous Widower

It Looks Like 315817 Is The Prototype Overground Class 315 Train

Since Sunday, I’ve ridden on quite a few Class 315 trains, both of the Overground and TfL Rail. Although, I saw 315817 on Monday at Enfield Town station, I hadn’t got a chance to ride in one that as one the Overground’s managers had told me, had spent ten days in the maintenance shop being cleaned, painted and dressed. Today, there had been overhead line problems, so what should turn up at Hackney Downs station after a longer than usual wait, but 315817.

In my view, the design of the new livery is good and the ten days in the shop were well spent.

Good points include.

1. Getting rid of the awful pink!

2. Cleverly adapting the Class 378 colours and fabric, so that costs of the refurbishment are minimised.

3. The new Tube-style route map and the cut down central Tube map. Harry Beck, Frank Pick et. al., set down a good set of rules.

4. Affordable seat refurbishment on the original frames.

When the train arrived at Liverpool Street, I noted it was an eight-car train, with an unrefurbished unit in tandem with 315817. But then eight-car trains are used quite regularly on Lea Valley Lines services in the peak periods.

So it would appear that if business becomes too much for four-car trains, London Overground will just couple them together and make them 8-car trains, thus avoiding the problems of success on the North and East London Lines.

And there is probably no shortage of Class 315 trains, with London Overground having seventeen of them and TfL Rail forty-four.

I do suspect though, that 315817 is probably the only train that has so far been refurbished. I look forward to see the rest as they trickle through.

June 2, 2015 Posted by | Transport | , | 1 Comment

Abbey Wood Explained

In my post on Crossrail at Abbey Wood Station, I expressed some puzzlement on how it will all be arranged. I said this.

It’s still not totally clear to me, where the tracks and platforms will go in Abbey Wood station. But so long as Crossrail and its contractors know, who cares?

So I’m pleased to read a full explanation in this article in Rail Engineer. They say this about the layout at Abbey Wood station.

Under Crossrail, the two existing platforms will both be rebuilt as island platforms by having a track each installed on the ‘back side’ of them. The northerly island, currently the Down platform to Kent, will be the Crossrail terminus while the current Up platform will become the one for the North Kent line.

In this picture that I took from a footbridge to the East of the station, North is to the left.

Looking West From The Footbridge

So Crossrail will be the two lines on the left and the North Kent Line will be on the right.

It isn’t perfect, as it means there is no cross-platform interchange between the two lines.

If you read the article in Rail Engineer, all will be explained.

June 2, 2015 Posted by | Transport | , | Leave a comment

Is My New Handrail Transforming My Life?

That may seem a rather bizarre question to ask, but then I live on the first floor of my house and I do have to carry quite a few things up and down stairs. This picture shows the stairs from the bottom.

My Stairs

My Stairs

Note that there are rails on both sides, so when going up and down, if I can, I use a hand on each rail. Just as I was taught on my extensive Health and Safety course at ICI.

Take last night. I keep a spare roll by each toilet and as it needed changing, I put the spare on the holder reader for use. As I keep the bags of rolls downstairs, I usually forget to bring one up and the inevitable happens next time.

But last night, I immediately went down the stairs and collected a new one. I’d have never done that before the handrail was installed.

I also now change the rubbish bags when they get full and take them to the bins, rather than let them overflow and leave them to my cleaners.

I have a gammy left hand, due to a school bullying accident, and I neglect to use it. There’s probably nothing seriously wrong with it, that using it as much as possible wouldn’t cure!

But now coming up the stairs with shopping, I’ll put the bag in my stronger right hand and guide myself up with the left, pulling as required. In the last few days, I’ve found that instead of walking up and down stairs on the right at places like Underground stations, I now go with the flow, even if that is on the left.

And then yesterday, my personal trainer came and we used the stairs to do various aerobic exercises on the stairs. Who needs to buy expensive equipment that takes up space?

I would have never thought that such a small thing would change my behaviour so much!

You do wonder how many people have been seduced into buying an expensive stair-lift, when all they really needed was to fit a handrail, that was worthy of the name and strongly fixed to the wall, so they could hold it properly, as they walked up and down.

June 2, 2015 Posted by | World | | 1 Comment