The Anonymous Widower

Walking To And From Ilkeston Station

I got off the bus on the roundabout in Ilkeston and walked along Millership Way to the construction site of Ilkeston station.

It took me about twenty minutes, so I would suspect that Ilkeston will need a shuttle bus to actually get between the town and the station.

Not much seemed to be happening, but then, it appears to my untrained eye, ythat the station is being built in the middle of a swamp. It’s certainly a challenging project. \Wikpedia saus this about construction delays.

During preliminary work at the site in June 2014, an ecological survey found protected great crested newts, delaying the start of construction until October 2014. This, together with additional flood protection work means that the station opening is deferred to spring 2015.

In October 2014, it was announced that the cost of proposed flood protection work exceeds the available budget, requiring a cheaper solution to be found. This further delays the start of construction until 2015, and the earliest opening date to ‘late 2015’..

In February 2015, it was announced that more great crested newts had been found, further delaying work on site. The opening is now expected to be by August 2016.

Hopefully, it will look like this when it is finished.

Ilkeston Station Visualisation

Ilkeston Station Visualisation

All of the pictures of the station site, were taken from the road on the left.

I walked back to Ilkeston and then had to climb the hill to where I was meeting local residents interested in their train station.

It was a challenging walk. As I said before, when they build the station there will be a need for a shuttle bus!

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

Nottingham To Ilkeston And Back

Ilkeston is a town without a railway station and this is said in Wikpedia about the town and its railway links.

Ilkeston has not had a railway station since 1967, despite its substantial population and the fact that the Midland Main Line (formerly part of the Midland Railway, later the LMS) skirts the eastern edge of the town. Due to recent rail reopenings in similarly-sized towns it is now, by some definitions, the largest town in Britain with no station.

So I had to go to the nearest station at Langley Mill and hopefully, I could organise a taxi. I took these pictures on the journey.

After trying three taxi numbers at Langley Mill and all saying they couldn’t help, I got a bus to Heanor from where I got another bus to Ilkeston. To be fair to the buses, I’ve travelled on much worse services elsewhere in the UK. Cambridge to Haverhill for a start. And I was not issued with a dreaded ticket.

After my meeting, I decide to take the easy route back, so I got an express bus into Nottingham and then use the Nottingham Express Transit to get to the station.

I don’t think that in the twenty-first century, where we’re supposed to use green public transport, that this is the best we can do to get in a reasonable time from Nottingham to Ilkeston.

A related question, is, Is it easier to get to Ilkeston by taking a train to Derby and getting the bus from there?

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

Queen’s Medical Centre On The Nottingham Express Transit

The Queen’s Medical Centre is Nottingham’s big hospital.

The tram climbs onto a viaduct to pass through the hospital and although the walkways into the hospital aren’t fully completed, it is surely the way to provide transport to a hospital.

The guy manning the station, as surely it is too grand just be a stop, was proud of his charge, saying it is the only hospital with a tram stop in the UK. I think he could be right, although University station in Birmingham serves the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and my three local hospitals are all served by the Overground or Underground.

Having seen this station, there is no doubt in my mind, that to serve a hospital with its large number of people with mobility problems is the best way to do it, if it is possible.

Nottingham’s solution at the Queen’s Medical Centre is definitely world class.

Nottingham certainly passes the Two Elderly Siblings test with a score of at least nine out of ten.

One sibling is in the hospital and the other lives some distance away but can get to the nearest station to the hospital reasonably easy. Can they then get from the nearest station to the hospital using local transport? Even if they are being pushed in a wheelchair.

In Nottingham, you would use a lift at the station to get to the tram and then it’s a simple ride on a step-free low-floor tram to the station. The hospital is actually on the other side of the tram tracks on arrival from Nottingham station, but as it’s a tram, you just walk or be pushed across, to enter the hospital.

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

NG2 On The Nottingham Express Transit

I took these pictures at the NG2 tram stop.

It’s just a pretty normal tram stop by Nottingham’s standard, but the reason I stopped off here to take pictures, was that it is close to the triangular junction to the west of Nottingham station, where trains for Nottingham turn off the main Midland Main Line to access the station. This Google Map shows the area.

NG2 Nottingham

NG2 Nottingham

The NG2 tram stop is just South of the place where the road crosses the railway at the Western point of the junction, which goes in the direction of Beeston and the South. The line to the East leads to Nottingham station, and that to the North leads to Chesterfield, Sheffield and the North, as well as the Robin Hood Line.

The tram route curves away to the West to go to the Queen’s Medical Centre and Nottingham University.

In some ways it illustrates how Nottingham’s railways and the new trams weave a pattern around the  city, with very large numbers of possible routes.

As tram-trains are now on the menu and tram-trains were first employed in Nottingham’s twin city of Karlsruhe, I doubt that anybody can predict the next line to be developed in Nottingham.

The only certain thing, is that in my two trips to the city recently, is that the people of Nottingham are proud of their trams and are using the system in large numbers.

As I said in Conclusions On Phase 2 Of The Nottingham Express Transit, the system may suffer from London Overground syndrome, of being built without enough capacity and new trams, tram-trains or extensions will soon be in the pipeline.




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

Toton Lane On The Nottingham Express Transit

Toton Lane tram stop is the Southern Terminal of Line 1 of the Nottingham Express Transit.

It opened on the 25th August 2015 as part of Phase 2 of the NET. These are pictures. I took on a visit a week later.

The stop and the associated Park-and-Ride are very similar to the similar facility at Clifton South.

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

Walking Around Nottingham Station

When I arrived in Nottingham, the weather was still good, despite rain being forecast, so I went for a walk right around the train station to see if there was space for the junctions to connect tram-trains coming in as trains from points East and West to access the tram line that crosses the station in a North South direction with a tram stop above the station. This Google Map shows the area, where I walked.

Around Nottingham Station

Around Nottingham Station

Note that this map was created before the tram line over the station and the multi-coloured multi-story car park were built, but the old tram-stop on Station Street is clearly marked. The foot bridge over the station, which is a public footpath that also allows pedestrians to access the trains is the only bridge across the station.

These are pictures I took as I walked around the station

I started by walking East along Station Street that runs along the North side of the station, then crossed the rail lines on the road bridge before walking back to the station along Queen’s Road.

After a brief pit stop in the station, I crossed South and followed the tram route intending to pick it up at the next stop to go to Toton Lane. But it was a long walk, so I crossed back North across the railway and walked back to the station along the canal, from ewhere I caught the tram South.

Currently Wikipedia lists three possible tram-trains routes from Nottingham to expand the NET. Two are in the East; Gedling and Bingham and one is in the West; Ilkeston.

I think there is plenty of space around the station to accommodate these routes.

I suspect too, that as the routes have been discussed since the mid-2000s, any current or future development has been or is being built, so that it doesn’t compromise any possible tram-train connections.

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