The Anonymous Widower

LNER To Serve Cleethorpes

Under the proposed new LNER timetable, which will start in May 2022, there will be a new train service between London Kings Cross and Cleethorpes.

According to this article on the Lincolnite, which is entitled Direct Cleethorpes To London Rail Link ‘Close’ To Getting Go Ahead, there will be one service per day.

It will leave Cleethorpes at 06:24 and Grimsby Town at 06:32 before arriving at King’s Cross at 09:25.

The return will leave King’s Cross at 16:10 and arrive in Grimsby Town at 19:05 and Cleethorpes at 19:20.

The August 2021 Edition of Modern Railways makes these points about the service.

  • The larger Azuma fleet makes this extension possible.
  • ,A more regular service would require additional trains.
  • LNER is examining whether other intermediate stations east of Lincoln could be served.

I would have thought, that Market Rasen station could be a possibility for an intermediate stop.

I have a few thoughts.

Extra Services

This single service is ideal for though living in Lincolnshire, but it doesn’t suit those people, who perhaps need to go to the area from London for business or family reasons.

  • Lincoln appears to get around five or six trains per day in each direction to and from King’s Cross.
  • Services are roughly one train per two hours.
  • I suspect the Lincoln service can be run by a single train, that shuttles between King’s Cross and Lincoln stations.

I believe, that Cleethorpes needs at least a pair of services to and from London, so that travellers can spend a day in North-East Lincolnshire.

  • This would probably need more trains.
  • Services would go via Lincoln and Lincoln may get extra services to London.
  • Selected services could stop at intermediate stations, like Market Rasen.

There are surely possibilities for a integrated timetable between King’s Cross and Lincoln, Market Rasen, Grimsby Town and Cleethorpes.

Battery-Electric Operation

Consider.

  • LNER’s Class 800 trains are prime candidates for conversion to Hitachi Intercity Tri-Mode Battery Trains, so they can run away from the overhead wires of the East Coast Main Line to places like Lincoln, by the use of battery power.
  • These battery trains could charge using the electrification between King’s Cross and Newark North Gate stations.
  • The distance between Lincoln Central station and the East Coast Main Line is 16.6 miles.
  • In Plans To Introduce Battery Powered Trains In Scotland, I quote Hitachi, as saying they expect a sixty mile range for battery trains.

I am sure, that these trains would have sufficient range on battery to be able to work King’s Cross and Lincoln services without using diesel.

But could the Hitachi trains reach Cleethorpes with some well-positioned charging?

  • The distance between Lincoln and Cleethorpes stations is 47.2 miles.
  • In Solving The Electrification Conundrum, I describe Hitachi’s solution to running battery-electric trains, by using well-placed short lengths of 25 KVAC overhead electrification controlled by an intelligent power system.

With a range of sixty miles on batteries and charging at Lincoln and Cleethorpes stations, it would appear that battery electric operation of Class 800 trains between King’s Cross and Cleethorpes is a distinct possibility.

Lincoln Station

Lincoln station has three operational through platforms and I suspect all would need to be electrified, so that trains could be charged as they passed through.

These are distances from Lincoln station.

  • Cleethorpes – 47.2 miles
  • Doncaster – 36.9 miles
  • Nottingham – 33.9 miles
  • Peterborough – 56.9 miles
  • Sheffield – 48.5 miles

It does appear that if Lincoln station were to be electrified, most services from the city could be run using battery-electric trains.

Cleethorpes Station

This picture shows Cleethorpes station with two TransPennine Express Class 185 trains in the station.

Note.

  1. The Class 185 trains are diesel, but could be replaced by Hitachi Class 802 trains, which could be converted to battery-electric operation.
  2. Cleethorpes and Doncaster are 52.1 miles apart, which could be in range of Hitachi’s battery-electric trains.
  3. It doesn’t look to be too challenging to electrify a couple of platforms to charge the battery-electric trains.
  4. Cleethorpes station could surely charge both the LNER and the TransPennine Express trains.
  5. The Cleethorpes and Barton-on-Humber service which is under fifty miles for a round trip could also be replaced with battery-electric trains.

Cleethorpes station could be totally served by battery-electric trains.

Battery-Electric Trains For Lincolnshire

At the present time, there is a surplus of good redundant electrical multiple units and the rolling stock leasing companies are looking for places where they can be used.

Porterbrook are already looking to convert their fleet of Class 350 trains to battery-electric operation and I am certain, that now that Hitachi and others have solved the charging problem, a lot more trains will be converted.

Most would appear to be four-car 100 mph trains, which will be very convenient and should fit most platforms.

Conclusion

Running battery-electric Class 800 trains to Lincoln, Grimsby Town and Cleethorpes could be the start of decarbonisation of Lincolnshire’s railways.

What would battery-electric trains do for the economy of Lincolnshire?

 

 

 

August 7, 2021 - Posted by | Transport | , , , , , , , , , , ,

5 Comments »

  1. I doubt that H M Treasury will support any serious infrastructure improvements (and additional types of rolling stock power supplies) for routes away from the main north-south spine until it can be shown that ridership numbers have recovered and resumed increases above those of late 2019.

    Comment by Thomas Carr | August 7, 2021 | Reply

    • One of the beauties of Hitachi’s plan is that it is very affordable. The extra trains needed for Cleethorpes are being ordered and to charge them, it would need small lengths of electrification.

      Local trains could be conversions of trains, which are sitting in sidings and are owned by the Government.

      Comment by AnonW | August 7, 2021 | Reply

  2. Personally these token gesture trains are a bit pointless lot of expense training up crews and trains that get under utilised. What is needed is a timetable that builds in proper connection and a supporting connection policy to guarantee connections. Then these larger regional towns should be served by limited stop services that connect at main hubs like Doncaster but could be Lincoln etc.

    A national integrated Taktfahrplan should be given to GBR as a prime goal it might take 5 years to implement but it will support modal shift away from cars.

    Comment by Nicholas Lewis | August 8, 2021 | Reply

    • Lincoln started off as a single daily service and now it is a direct train every two hours.

      Harrogate went the same way.

      With the ability of the Hitachi trains to split and join, I wouldn’t be surprised that after a slow start Cleethorpes has a similar service to Lincoln and Harrogate.

      When you see the amount of energy related development around Scunthorpe, Grimsby and Cleethorpes, I suspect, it’ll be up to five trains per day to London, quicker than anyone now thinks.

      But that does need some more five-car Hitachi trains. I note that according to Modern Railways, that LNER have added five options to the ten trains, that they are looking to buy.

      Comment by AnonW | August 8, 2021 | Reply

      • Agree that Lincoln as a city has been woefully served for decades but its only been allocated a two hour slot on ECML and guess that any extension to Grimsby/Cleethorpes would need several more units but how much traffic would it generate?

        Comment by Nicholas Lewis | August 8, 2021


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