The Anonymous Widower

Cardiff Northwest Corridor Tram-Train Report Published

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Railway Gazette.

This is the introductory paragraph.

Proposals have been published for the development of a tram-train network to serve housing developments on the Northwest Corridor between Cardiff and Llantrisant.

And this paragraph describes the route.

The report looks at a route making use of the existing City Line railway from Cardiff and then following a safeguarded former railway alignment to M4 Junction 33 and Creigiau. Possible extensions could run from Creigiau to Cross Inn and Pontyclun and from Cross Inn to Miskin, Talbot Green, Llantrisant and Beddau.

This map shows the route from the City Line to Creigiau.

Note.

  1. The City Line to Radyr passing through Waun-Gron Park, Fairwater and Danescourt, which is shown in yellow.
  2. The South Wales Main Line running across the bottom of the map, which is shown in orange.
  3. The M4 running Westerly from the North-East corner of the map.
  4. The A4232 runs North-South and meets the M4 at Junction 33.
  5. Creigiau is in the North-West corner of the map.

The route of the tram-train would follow the route of the disused railway between the City Line and Creigiau, which is shown as a dotted line, identified with the code LTO.

This second map from OpenRailwayMap shows the area around Junction 33 of the M4.

Note.

  1. The M4 going across the map.
  2. The A4232 going South from Junction 33.
  3. The proposed tram-train line passing to the East of Junction 33.

I suspect that as there is a BP petrol station and a Travel Lodge at the junction, there is a lot of scope to create a comprehensive Park-and-Ride hub for Cardiff, that would be served by the new tram-train.

The third OpenRailwayMap shows the various routes from Creigiau.

Note.

  1. Creigiau is in the South-East corner of the map.
  2. Cross Inn is in the middle of the map.
  3. The South Wales Main Line, which is shown in orange, cuts across the the South-West corner of the map.

The ultimate destinations of Miskin, Pontyclun, Talbot Green, Llantrisant and Beddau all have disused railway tracks leading to Cross Inn.

Serving The Royal Mint

The Royal Mint moved to Llantrisant in the late 1960s and it could be served by the tram-train, as it is to the North of the town, close to a disused railway line.

I must admit, I am very surprised, that a company that employs 10,000 people doesn’t have a nearby railway station.

But then the move of the Royal Mail to Wales was planned by Harold Wilson’s government, which was led by a man, who believed that railways were irrelevant and everybody should have their own cars.

 

 

 

 

June 15, 2022 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Greater Manchester Clean Air Zone Plans Put On Hold

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

These are the first four paragraphs.

The controversial rollout of Greater Manchester’s Clean Air Zone (CAZ) has been delayed.

The scheme, which would see some high-emission vehicles face daily charges, had been due to begin at the end of May. Private cars would be exempt.

The government said the pause would allow for consultation and a revised plan was due in July.

Regional mayor Andy Burnham had earlier asked the government to delay the scheme.

If Manchester don’t bring the pollution levels down, Client Earth are threatening legal action.

But to me, as a pedestrian, I do find Manchester City Centre a difficult place to walk, compared to say Birmingham or Liverpool, as the traffic seems to move about at a fast pace.

But then I blame Harold Wilson, who cancelled the Picc-Vic tunnel.

Liverpool and Newcastle received their beneficial cross-city tunnels, but Harold Wilson said that everyone would have their own cars, so we won’t need railways.

February 5, 2022 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , | 4 Comments

The East Coast Main Line And The A14

I finally managed to get pictures of the new route of the A14 as it crosses over the East Coast Main Line.

This Google Map shows the crossing from above.

I do wonder, why in the 1990s, when they created the A14, they didn’t do a proper job?

But then history shows that Governments don’t seem to get East-West links in the UK right.

  • Road and rail links across the Pennines are inadequate.
  • Only recently have Edinburgh and Glasgow been properly connected by rail.
  • The electrification of the Great Western Railway between London and Swansea has been an on-off project, that should have been done after electrification of the East Coast Main Line, before the team of engineers had been disbanded.
  • Road and rail links to the port of Holyhead were ignored for years and could be improved again.
  • The Varsity Line between Oxford and Cambridge was recommended by Beeching to be kept, but Harold Wilson closed it and now we are recreating it.

Is it because none of these routes are of much importance for politicians and civil servants living in London?

September 9, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , | 4 Comments

It’s Time To Detopsify Stratford Station

Stratford Station has grown like Topsy for too long and has several problems and possible future expansions.

Not least of these include.

  • The final arrival of Crossrail.
  • A direct connection to Chingford.
  • A Stansted Express service.
  • Massive housing developments in the area.
  • More hotels
  • New cultural developments like the branch of the Victoria and Albert Museum.
  • A new campus for University College London.

This article on IanVisits is entitled Stratford Station Set For Massive Transformation.

This is his opening paragraph.

Stratford station could be radically redeveloped under plans being worked on by the rail companies and local council.

That is rather understated!

The station will become several times busier and needs a complete rethink, many more services and deTopsification.

These are my thoughts.

The Development Of The High Meads Loop

The High Meads Loop exists and is a double-track loop that can turn trains arriving at Stratford station via Lea Bridge station.

  • It is underneath the Eastfield Shopping Centre – Westfield is in the West of London.
  • Each track of the loop has its own long platform in the station. – Platform 11 is for clockwise trains and Platform 12 is for anti-clockwise.
  • It has been used in the past for a Stansted Express service.

The Wirral Line in Liverpool like the High Meads Loop is now a modern loop for turning trains.

  • The Wirral Loop is only single-track.
  • It gives connections for over thirty stations on the Wirral and in Cheshire and North Wales to Liverpool City Centre.
  • It is run by fifty-year-old Class 507 and Class 508 trains.
  • The loop has now been improved and can handle upwards of the fourteen trains per hour (tph) it currently does.

Merseyrail will soon be introducing new Class 777 trains on the Wirral Line in the near future and will be increasing services and the number of destinations.

British Rail’s vision for Liverpool, that was cruelly cut-short by Liverpool MP; Harold Wilson, is finally coming to fruition.

Newcastle also got its British Rail tunnel which is now being used by the Metro, but what would have happened in Manchester if British Rail had been allowed to build the Picc-Vic Tunnel?

I have a strong belief, that a Lea Valley Metro can be developed on the West Anglia Main Line.

  • It would have two Southern terminals – Liverpool Street station and the High Meads Loop at Stratford.
  • When it opens, Crossrail will mean that Liverpool Street and Stratford stations will be seven or eight minutes apart with a frequency of at least 12 tph.
  • Northern terminals would include Broxbourne, Cheshunt, Chingford, Enfield Town and Hertford East.
  • Crossrail 2 was planned to have a frequency of 10 and 15 tph between Tottenham Hale and Broxbourne stations.

I believe that if services in East London are thoroughly reorganised, that all the benefits of Crossrail 2 can be brought to East London by the use of the High Meads Loop and the upgrading of existing lines.

Stansted Express Services

Go to Stratford station and there is an out-of-date sign at the end of Platform 1 and 2, where the Overground trains terminate.

It directs passengers to Platform 12 for Stansted Airport.

The picture was taken in 2017, but there is still a walk-through to Platform 12, that I use regularly, if I’m changing between London Overground and Greater Anglia or TfL Rail services to destinations on both the West Anglia or Great Eastern Main Lines.

I believe that there is still a need for a Stansted Express services from Stratford, as for some people, including myself, it is easier to get to Stratford, than Liverpool Street.

From some places the connections to and from Stansted are not very good. Try going between London Bridge, Canterbury, Euston, Victoria or Waterloo and Stansted with a few mobility issues like a heavy suitcase and/or a baby, without a degree in Ducking-and-Diving!

An additional Stansted Express service from Stratford would make things a lot easier to get to the airport for many travellers, because of Stratford’s connections to the Central, Jubilee and North London Lines and SouthEastern’s Highspeed services.

Better Connection Between High Speed One And The High Meads Loop For Passengers

Some passenger connections are missing at Stratford.

This is indicated in the IanVisits article.

This map from cartometro.com shows the Topsy-like nature of the platforms at Stratford.

Note.

  1. The Docklands Light Railway is shown in turquoise.
  2. The DLR platforms in the North-West corner of the map are those of Stratford International station.
  3. High Speed One and the four platforms of Stratford International station are shown in black.
  4. The North London Line of the London Overground is shown in orange.
  5. The North London Line terminates in Platforms 1 and 2, which have a level link to Platform 12.
  6. Platform 12 is on the anti-clockwise platform for the High Meads Loop and has step-free access to the subway system underneath the station.
  7. Platform 11 is on the clockwise platform for the High Meads Loop and has level access to Platform 10a and full step-free access,
  8. Platform 10a is used by some services to East Anglia.
  9. Crossrail is shown in blue.
  10. The Central Line is shown in red.
  11. The Jubilee Line is shown in silver.

It is not the best passenger-friendly station layout.

  • Inevitability, you often find yourself trudging a long way at Stratford station.
  • Changing to or from any high speed services is supremely difficult.
  • Often you have to walk through the busy Eastfield Shopping Centre.

Particularly annoying for me is coming back from Kent on High Speed One and needing to take the North London Line, as I do several times a year.

As it involves a long walk through the Shopping Centre, I now take the easy way out and carry on to St. Pancras and get a taxi home.

As Stratford International is one of the draughtiest stations in England, the station is a real Design Crime and it needs a serious makeover.

Conclusion

Sort it!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

May 16, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Route Selected For Cambridge Metro Link Between New A1307 Travel Hub And Biomedical Campus

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

This Google Map shows the Fourwentways intersection between the A1307 and A11 roads, where the travel hub will be created.

The travel hub will be South-West of the roundabout, which I know well, as it was only a few miles from where I lived.

It will improve the bus connection between Haverhill and the Biomedical Campus and the City of Cambridge.

It would appear that the Stour Valley Railway, is being recreated by extending the Cambridgeshire Busway.

The closure of the Stour Valley Railway in 1967, was one of the most ill-judged of the Beeching closures, that were solidly backed by the government of Harold Wilson, who believed that everyone should have their own car and that railways wouldn’t be needed. They also believed that all goods should go by truck. Is that what you get, when your Transport Secretary is an ex-lorry driver and a former boss of the lorry-drivers trade union?

We now have a Government backing these two projects.

  • The rebuilding of the Varsity Line between Oxford and Cambridge, which Beeching recommended for retention, but Wilson still closed.
  • The extension of the Cambridgeshire Busway to Haverhill.

As with so many projects around the country, all these totally unjustified cuts are being reversed.

But these railways should never been closed in the first place.

 

July 9, 2020 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Tories Win Blyth Valley

Wikipedia doesn’t say when Blyth Valley, last elected a Tory MP. But it was before 1950.

The Green Party seemed to have polled more votes than was expected.

It has been suggested that the railways through the area, which were closed in the 1960s, when Harold Wilson was Prime Minister,  be reopened.

Did this have an effect?

If I was Boris, I’d make sure the railway lines in the area were reopened.

December 13, 2019 Posted by | Transport/Travel, World | , , , | Leave a comment