The Anonymous Widower

Could There Be An Elizabeth Line Extension To Grays?

This article on My London is entitled London Underground Tube Map: The Towns That Could Be Added To The Elizabeth Line As New Giant Loop Through London, Essex And Kent Is Proposed.

This paragraph described the proposal.

The proposal, which is part of its Vision 2050 local transport plan, would see the current Elizabeth line service from Romford take over the Overground branch to Emerson Park and Upminster, then join c2c services continuing via Chafford Hundred Lakeside to Tilbury. It would then head under a new tunnel beneath the Thames to Gravesend, connecting with the reintroduced Eurostar at Ebbsfleet International/Northfleet.

It’s certainly a bold idea and you can view the report to Thurrock Council here.

These are my thoughts.

The Frequency Of Trains

Currently, these services have a frequency of two trains per hour (tph) in both directions.

  • Romford and Upminster.
  • Upminster and Tilbury Town.

It would seem sensible that this frequency is preserved, thus giving every station on the loop four tph to and from the Eastern End of the Central Tunnel at Whitechapel station. Two tph would go via Romford and Stratford and two tph would go via Ebbsfleet and Abbey Wood.

What Would Be The Western Terminal?

It would probably be the two busiest terminals in the West.

I suspect that these will be Heathrow Terminal 4 and Heathrow Terminal 5

  • Two tph would go between Heathrow Terminal 4 and Heathrow Terminal 5 via the loop.
  • Two tph would go between Heathrow Terminal 5 and Heathrow Terminal4 via the loop.
  • Two tph would go clockwise.
  • Two tph would go anticlockwise.

I suspect the digital signalling can sort it out, just as it does the loop in Thameslink.

The Connection At Romford To The Romford and Upminster Line

Consider.

  • The Romford and Upminster Line is single-track.
  • A well-signalled single-track railway can handle two tph in both directions in an hour.
  • Trains take five minutes to go between Romford and Emerson Park stations.
  • Trains between Romford and Upminster will use Platform 5 at Romford station.
  • Trains between Upminster and Romford will use Platform 4 at Romford station.

This map from cartometro shows the track layout at Romford station.

Note.

  1. The orange lines are the Overground tracks of the Romford and Upminster Line, which connects to Platform 1 in Romford station.
  2. The black and purple lines are the Elizabeth Line, which go through Platforms 4 and 5 at Romford station.
  3. The black lines are the fast lines of the Great Eastern Main Line, which go through Platforms 2 and 3 at Romford station.
  4. There is no connection between the Elizabeth Line and the Romford and Upminster Line.

I believe it is possible to build a single-track flyover or dive-under that connects both Platforms 4 and 5 at Romford station to the Romford and Upminster Line.

A similar double track flyover was built to connect the Barking Riverside branch to the main lines through Barking.

  • But this track layout would only need to be single-track.
  • I also suspect that there may not be enough space to put in a full double-track flyover.
  • It would avoid the inconvenience and danger of using flat junctions to cross the fast lines of the Great Eastern Main Line.

As it only takes five minutes to go between Romford and Emerson Park stations, there is plenty of time to fit two tph in both directions in an hour.

Platform Extension In Platform 1 At Romford Station

Platforms 4 and 5 at Romford regularly take nine-car Class 345 trains, but I think that Platform 1 should be lengthened, to provide a bay platform on the route to help out when the service needs to recover.

Platform Extension At Emerson Park Station

The platform at Emerson Park station will need to be lengthened to take nine-car Class 345 trains.

Some commentators claim, that the passing loop at the station needs to be rebuilt. But I suspect, this isn’t needed as the expanded layout at Romford station effectively creates a passing loop.

The Connection At Upminster Between The Romford and Upminster Line And The Upminster And Tilbury Town Line

Consider.

  • Both lines are single-track.
  • But there is a passing loop at Ockenden station.
  • There are three tracks between West Thurrock junction and Grays.
  • Trains take five minutes to go between Emerson Park and Upminster stations.
  • Trains take ten minutes to go between Upminster and Chafford Hundred stations.
  • Trains take four minutes to go between Chafford Hundred and Grays stations.
  • Trains take thirteen minutes to go between Upminster station and West Thurrock junction.

This map from cartometro shows the track layout at Upminster station.

Note.

  1. The orange lines are the Overground tracks of the Romford and Upminster Line, which connects to Platform 6 in Upminster station.
  2. The green lines are the District Line tracks that handle the services that terminate at Upminster station.
  3. The black lines are the c2c tracks between Fenchurch Street and Southend Central stations go through Platforms 1 and 2 at Upminster station.
  4. The Upminster and Tilbury Town Line leaves Upminster station in a South-Easterly direction.
  5. The Upminster and Tilbury Town Line connects to Platforms 1 and 2 at Upminster station.

I believe it is possible to build a single-track flyover or dive-under that connects both Platforms 1 and 2 at Upminster station to the Romford and Upminster Line.

This would connect the following.

  • The Romford and Upminster Line to the the Upminster and Tilbury Town Line.
  • The Romford and Upminster Line to the the Fenchurch Street and Southend Central Line.

Upminster station would be a much improved interchange.

Two tph Between Tilbury Town and Romford Stations

Consider.

  • The route is fully electrified.
  • The route is a mixture of single and double-track.
  • There is a passing loop at Ockendon station.
  • The platform at Emerson Park and possibly others may need to be extended to take nine-car Class 345 trains.

I believe single-track flyovers or dive-unders at Romford and Upminster stations would enable two tph on the route.

The only downside I can see, is that passengers going between Fenchurch Street and Chafford Hundred or Ockendon stations would need to change at Grays or Upminster stations.

Alternatively, they could take the Elizabeth Line, which would have a 4 tph direct service between the Central Tunnel of the line and Chafford Hundred and Ockendon stations.

Under The Thames

This map from OpenRailwayMap shows the lines on the North bank of the Thames.

Note.

  1. The orange line is the double-track Tilbury Loop Line between Fenchurch Street and Southend Central stations.
  2. Tilbury Town station is in the North-West corner of the map.
  3. There is a proposal for a Tilbury Fort station in the North-East corner of the map.
  4. The blue arrow at the bottom of the map indicates the former Tilbury Riverside station, which is next to the London International Cruise Terminal.

I believe the North portal of the tunnel under the river could be at the site of the former Tilbury Riverside station.

Would it be an idea to rebuild the station and connect it to the cruise terminal, so that passengers on the cruise ships would have excellent access to Central London, Ebbsfleet International station for High Speed One and Heathrow Airport?

This map from OpenRailwayMap shows the lines on the South bank of the Thames.

Note.

  1. Tilbury Town station, the former Tilbury Riverside Riverside station and the Tilbury Loop Line are in the North-East corner of the map.
  2. Gravesend station is in the South-East corner of the map.
  3. The wide orange line going vaguely North-South at the Western side of the map is High Speed One going through Ebbsfleet International station.
  4. Connecting Gravesend and Ebbsfleet International stations is the North Kent Line.

I suspect it would be possible to bore a tunnel from Tilbury Riverside, that passed under Gravesend station and joined the North Kent Line to the West of the station.

How Would The River Crossing Connect To Gravesend Station?

The platform or platforms on the Elizabeth Line Loop would have to be underground, as there is not much space at Gravesend station as these pictures show.

 

Note.

  1. Gravesend has SouthEastern HighSpeed services to St. Pancras International station and North-East Kent.
  2. The route to Gravesend has been safeguarded for the Elizabeth Line.
  3. The railway under the Thames could replace the Tilbury and Gravesend Ferry.

There also could be operational advantages in not terminating Elizabeth Line services at Gravesend.

Abbey Wood And Gravesend

In Elizabeth Line To Ebbsfleet Extension Could Cost £3.2 Billion, I looked at the Transport for the South East proposal for extending the Elizabeth Line to Kent.

This image from the Abbeywood2Ebbsfleet consultation, shows the proposal.

Note, that there doesn’t appear to be too much new infrastructure, except for a proper connection between Northfleet and Ebbsfleet stations. References on the Internet, say that the similar-sized Luton DART connection at Luton Airport, cost around £225 million, but we now know it was well upwards of that.

The TfSE proposal says that trains would terminate as follows.

  • Abbey Wood – 4 tph
  • Northfleet – 4 tph
  • Gravesend – 4 tph

As space is limited at Gravesend and there is money for extending a railway service to a new Hoo station, I feel that proposing a two tph service to Hoo station would be a prudent action to take.

This would leave a handy two tph to take the loop back to Central London.

Could A Large Parkway Station Be Built Between Romford and Tilbury Riverside Stations?

Ebbsfleet International station, which is to the South-East of London, has 5,000 parking spaces and is the only large Park-and-Ride site around the capital.

Could another large Park-and-Ride site be opened on the Elizabeth Line North of the Thames?

One place could be at Chafford Hundred station and the nearby Lakeside Shopping Centre.

This Google Map shows the area.

Note.

  1. The M25 runs North-South up the Western side of the map.
  2. Chafford Hundred station is in the South-East corner of the map.
  3. The shopping centre is next to the station.

Last time I went, Lakeside was looking tired.

Timings To And From Whitechapel

These are estimated timings to and from Whitechapel.

  • Romford – 26 mins – 81 mins
  • Emerson Park – 31 mins – 76 mins
  • Upminster – 35 mins – 72 mins
  • Ockendon – 41 mins – 66 mins
  • Chafford Hundred – 45 mins – 62 mins
  • Grays – 49 mins – 58 mins
  • Tilbury Town – 52 mins – 55 mins
  • Tilbury Riverside – 58 mins – 49 mins
  • Gravesend – 62 mins – 45 mins
  • Northfleet – 65 mins – 42 mins
  • Swanscombe – 68 mins – 39 mins
  • Greenhithe for Bluewater – 71 mins – 36 mins
  • Stone Crossing – 73 mins – 34 mins
  • Dartford – 81 mins – 26 mins
  • Slade Green – 86 mins – 21 mins
  • Erith – 88 mins – 19 mins
  • Belvedere – 89 mins – 18 mins
  • Abbey Wood – 92 mins – 15 mins

Note.

  1. The times between Tilbury Town and Gravesend are my best estimates.
  2. All other times are taken from current services.
  3. The first time is the time to Whitechapel via Romford.
  4. The second time is the time to Whitechapel via Abbey Wood.

It does appear that the best times from all stations are under an hour.

 

 

 

February 26, 2023 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Very Busy Lizzie

Yesterday, I took the Elizabeth Line, back from Reading to Moorgate.

  • When, I got on at Reading, there were perhaps fifty empty seats and I was able to have three seats to myself.
  • But by Slough, It was standing room only!
  • It cleared a bit at Paddington, but by Moorgate there were only a few seats left.

Currently, there are two trains per hour (tph) between Abbey Wood and Reading stations.

As other passengers said is always busy, I suspect that Transport for London need to tweak the signalling, so that four tph run to Reading.

This section called Planned Service in the Wikipedia entry for the Elizabeth Line says this.

In May 2023, it is planned to allow trains to run from both eastern branches to west of Paddington. This will allow both more flexible, and higher frequency, services: 24 tph peak, 20 tph off-peak, and direct services between Shenfield and Heathrow. In the longer term, when Old Oak Common opens, all trains will serve Old Oak Common, with those not serving the Reading or Heathrow branches reversing there.

The service changes for May 2023 were confirmed in February 2023. The peak timetable will increase to 24 trains per hour. Off-peak service level will remain at 16 trains per hour, with two Shenfield–Paddington trains extended to Heathrow Airport Terminal 5 and two Abbey Wood–Terminal 5 trains switching to Terminal 4.

This will give an Off Peak schedule as follows.

  • Reading and Abbey Wood – 2 tph
  • Maidenhead and Abbey Wood – 2 tph
  • Heathrow Terminal 4 and  Abbey Wood – 4 tph
  • Heathrow Terminal 5 and Abbey Wood – 0 tph
  • Heathrow Terminal 5 and Shenfield – 2 tph
  • Paddington and Shenfield – 6 tph

I don’t believe it is good enough.

I suspect passenger congestion and reaction will force a rethink by the Mayor and Transport for London.

 

 

February 20, 2023 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Elizabeth Line Sees 100 million Journeys Since May 2022

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

These two paragraphs outline the figures.

More than 100 million journeys have been made on the Elizabeth line in its first eight months.

Since opening in May 2022, about 600,000 trips have been made every day across the line, which links Reading and Heathrow to Shenfield and Abbey Wood, Transport for London (TfL) said.

Note.

    1. There have been complaints, which I wrote about in Elizabeth Line: Commuters Say Service ‘Not What Was Promised’.
    2. I also tend to avoid trains to and from Heathrow, as I wrote about in So Many Cases On A Train!

But how do you know a train has come from Heathrow? Only because it’s full of cases.

 

 

February 3, 2023 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , | Leave a comment

Extending The Elizabeth Line – Connection To Southeastern High Speed One Services

The Two Stratford Stations

In this post, Stratford station is the station handling Greater Anglia and London Overground, Underground and Docklands Light Railway services, with Stratford International station handles High Speed services.

The Elizabeth Line And The Great Western Railway Services

One of the most important stations on the Elizabeth Line is Paddington, where it connects to the London terminus of the Great Western Railway.

I would expect that quite a few passengers going to the West and Wales on the Great Western Railway, will be transported to Paddington by the Elizabeth Line.

The Elizabeth Line And Greater Anglia Services

Another of the important stations on the Elizabeth Line is Liverpool Street, where the station is the London terminus of the Greater Anglia.

I would expect that quite a few passengers going to East Anglia on the Greater Anglia, will be transported to Liverpool Street by the Elizabeth Line.

Southeastern High Speed One Services

Southeastern runs some High Speed services  on High Speed One to provide Kent with an improved service to London.

Current services are

  • London St Pancras International to Ramsgate via Faversham.
  • London St Pancras International to Ramsgate via Dover Priory.
  • London St Pancras International to Margate via Canterbury West.

Note

  1. All trains are one train per hour (tph).
  2. All trains stop at Stratford International and Ebbsfleet International.
  3. All trains are run by 140 mph Class 395 trains.

There has also been talk of running a fourth service to Hastings and Eastbourne via Stratford International, Ebbsfleet International and Ashford International.

St. Pancras Station

All of these trains terminate in three platforms; 11 to 13 at St. Pancras International station.

St. Pancras is not the ideal terminal for the Southeastern High Speed services.

  • St. Pancras is not on the Elizabeth Line.
  • St.Pancras doesn’t have good connections to Heathrow.
  • All connections to the Underground are a long walk.
  • Eurostar services are a longer walk.
  • East Midland services are also a longer route, with stairs and escalators for good measure.

St. Pancras station was designed by a committee, as a museum to Victorian architecture, rather than as a working station.

Ebbsfleet International Station Must Be The Largest Parkway Station In The UK

It holds nearly five thousand cars and it is served by Southeastern High Speed Services.

Thanet Parkway Station Will Open This Year

Thanet Parkway station is under construction.

  • It will have nearly three hundred parking spaces.
  • It will be served by Southeastern High Speed Services.
  • It should open in May 2023.

This station will need a good connection to London.

Could An Interchange Between The Elizabeth Line And Southeastern High Speed Services Be Provided At Stratford?

Such an alternative interchange would be popular with passengers.

  • The Elizabeth Line from Stratford currently serves the West End, the Northern section of the City of London, East London, Liverpool Street, Paddington and the West End directly.
  • The Elizabeth Line from Stratford currently serves Canary Wharf, Cannon Street, Charing Cross, Euston, Heathrow, King’s Cross. Reading, St. Pancras and Victoria with a change at Whitechapel.
  • The Central Line, which shares platforms with the Elizabeth Line  serves Bank and the West End directly.
  • The Overground is easily accessed for travel across North London to Richmond.
  • The Jubilee Line is easily accessed for travel to London Bridge, Waterloo and Westminster.

It would be connected to two large parkway stations and lots of parking all over Kent.

I believe that Stratford must be promoted as an alternative terminus for Southeastern High Speed Services.

Today, I walked both ways between two Stratford stations.

These pictures show the route I took between Stratford and Stratford International stations, through the Eastfield Shopping Centre.

Note.

  1. I went through the Shopping Centre.
  2. I passed Marks & Spencer’s large food hall, excellent toilets and a Food Court.
  3. By the Food Court is an exit that leads to an entrance to Stratford International station.
  4. The walk took about 10 minutes.
  5. It was vaguely level.
  6. Lifts by-passed the escalators.
  7. One thing that makes the journey to London easier, is to travel in the Eastern end of the train, as the lifts and escalators at Stratford International station, are at that end.

It does need some better signage, but they were doing a bit of refurbishment, so that may already be underway.

It could be a very high quality interchange and it is already better than St. Pancras.

Coming back I took the longer route outside the Shopping Centre.

Note.

  1. I just turned left out of the entrance, walked along the road and turned right past the bus station.
  2. If the weather had been colder or wetter, I’d have gone back via the Shopping Centre.
  3. The walk took about 12 minutes.

I think normally, I’d go back through the Shopping Centre, as there’s a Marks and Spencer Food Hall on the route and it’s slightly quicker and often warmer.

 

Could Stratford Station Be A London Superhub Station?

When you consider the stations connected to Stratford in London, East Anglia and Kent, it has an excellent collection.

  • Airports – Gatwick, Heathrow, Luton, Southend and Stansted
  • Cities – Cambridge, Canterbury, Chelmsford, Colchester, Ipswich, Norwich and Southend-on-Sea
  • London Main and Terminal Stations – Cannon Street, Charing Cross, Clapham Junction, Euston, Farringdon, King’s Cross, London Bridge, Liverpool Street, Marylebone, Moorgate, Paddington, Victoria and Waterloo
  • Major Areas – Canary Wharf, City of London, Hampstead, Olympic Park and West End
  • Ports – Dover, Felixstowe, Folkestone and Harwich

You can even get a train to Slough, with a change at Whitechapel.

I would think it already is a London Superhub Station.

January 30, 2023 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Extending The Elizabeth Line – Serving South-East London

The Inadequacies Of Abbey Wood Station

Abbey Wood station is the Elizabeth Line’s main terminus in South-East London.

The architecture is impressive, as the pictures taken before the station was finished show.

But other things are less than impressive.

  • There is no station parking.
  • Central London rail terminals served by Elizbeth Line services are only Liverpool Street/Moorgate and Paddington.
  • Central London rail terminals served by National Rail services are Cannon Street, London Bridge, King’s Cross and St. Pancras.

In my view, Abbey Wood is a lost cause, as a commuter station, unless substantial parking is built at the station.

Parking At Stations In West Kent

This list shows the number of car parking spaces at stations in West Kent and South East London.

  • Barnehurst – 162 *
  • Belvedere – None *
  • Bexleyheath – 83 *
  • Chatham – 276 *
  • Dartford – 186 *
  • Ebbsfleet International – 4945 #
  • Erith – None *
  • Eynsford – 15
  • Farningham Road – None
  • Gillingham – 152 *
  • Gravesend – 94 *
  • Greenhithe – 8 *
  • Longfield – 88
  • Meopham – 167
  • Northfleet – None *
  • Plumstead – None *
  • Rochester – None *
  • St. Mary Cray – 31
  • Slade Green – 25
  • Sole Street – 61
  • Stone Crossing – None *
  • Strood – 112 *
  • Swanley – 106
  • Swanscombe – None *
  • Welling – 117

Note.

  1. An asterisk (*) indicates direct trains to and from Abbey Wood station for the Elizabeth Line.
  2. An hash(#) indicates direct trains to and from Stratford International for the Elizabeth Line.

These figures are according to the National Rail web site.

It looks like unless you can walk to your nearest station and that has an easy connection to Abbey Wood, you’re probably better off going to Ebbsfleet and parking there.

Travelling Between Ebbsfleet International And The Elizabeth Line At Stratford International

Consider.

  • Southeastern’s Highspeed service between Ebbsfleet International and Stratford International has a frequency of three trains per hour (tph)
  • It takes less than twelve minutes between the two stations.
  • It takes ten minutes to walk between Stratford International and Stratford Station for the Elizabeth Line and Greater Anglia services.
  • There are eight Elizabeth Line tph to Paddington, calling at all stations. For Heathrow change at Whitechapel station.

Note.

  1. From these points, it should be possible to estimate the time you should park at Ebbsfleet to get to an event in London or East Anglia, if you live in Kent and are parking at Ebbsfleet International.
  2. I think four tph between Ebbsfleet International and Stratford International would make the route more attractive.
  3. If you’re going to Norwich or Ipswich be careful, as only one of the two tph stop at Stratford.

I catch the 12:30 from Liverpool Street for matches at Ipswich on Saturdays. This is the 12:38 from Stratford, so I suspect if you parked at parked at Ebbsfleet before 12:00, you’d make it.

Who’d have thought, that when they built the massive car parks at Ebbsfleet international, that they would be a Park-and-Ride for football at Ipswich. And Norwich too!

Changing Trains At Stratford

This map from Cartometro shows the two Stratford stations.

Note.

  1. The Elizabeth Line is shown in purple.
  2. The Central Line is shown in red.
  3. The Jubilee Line is shown in silver.
  4. The Overground is shown in orange.
  5. Lifts and escalators take passengers to and from the surface from between platforms 2 and 3 at Stratford International station.

Two pedestrian tunnels connect all the platforms in Stratford station.

  • Elizabeth Line trains use platforms 5 and 8.
  • Central Line trains use platforms 3, 3a and 6.
  • Great Eastern Main Line trains use platforms 9, 9a and 10.
  • Overground trains use platforms 1 and 2.

All platforms have lifts.

I suspect, that when you get to know the Stratford complex well, it’s easier than it looks.

But it does need better signage.

Full Step-Free Route Between Ebbsfleet And Heathrow Central

I have just used Transport for London’s Journey Planner, as if I was in a wheelchair and need full step-free access to go from Ebbsfleet to Heathrow Central.

This was the route.

  • Southeastern to Stratford International station – 10 mins
  • Walk to Stratford station – 21 mins
  • Jubilee Line to Bond Street – 24 mins
  • Bond Street to Heathrow Central – 32 mins

Note.

  1. The times are slower than say myself.
  2. I think it is possible to pick up the Elizabeth Line at Stratford.

But the route is certainly possible in a wheel-chair.

The Penge Interchange

This map from Cartometro shows where the East London Line of the London Overground and the Chatham Main Line between Victoria and Chatham cross in Penge.

Note.

  1. The East London Line runs North-South through Sydenham and Penge West stations.
  2. The Chatham Main Line runs through Penge East station.

There is a plan by Transport for London to create a Penge Interchange station on railway land, where the two lines cross.

  • The station could replace Penge West and Penge East stations.
  • It would be fully step-free.
  • Interchange would be allowed between the East London Line and the Chatham Main Line.

This would increase connectivity for those travelling to and from South-East London and West Kent.

I brlieve that this one interchange could help level-up a large area of South-East London.

 

January 29, 2023 Posted by | Sport, Transport/Travel | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Elizabeth Line: Commuters Say Service ‘Not What Was Promised’

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

This is the sub-heading to the article by Tom Edwards.

All of the huge modernist stations are now open and it is architecturally impressive, but what has service on the Elizabeth line been like since it opened in the summer?

These three paragraphs talk about how passengers have reported problems to Tom.

Many say it has been hit and miss, and commuters in West Ealing have been in touch with me to highlight some of the problems.

They recorded some of their journeys for BBC London, and it doesn’t look pleasant.

Many are really fed up with the delays and cancellations and above all the overcrowding.

As with many new railways, like the London Overground, the Borders Railway and the Dartmoor Line, the passenger numbers on the Elizabeth Line have exceeded projections.

The main reasons are probably.

  • Convenience of the new route and its stations.
  • Curiosity about the new infrastructure.
  • The improved access to the trains with heavy cases.

But in the case of the Elizabeth Line two other factors also apply.

Are Passengers Changing From the Piccadilly to the Elizabeth Line?

Consider.

  • The Piccadilly Line trains are smaller than the Elizabeth Line trains.
  • The Piccadilly Line trains are not air-conditioned.
  • Heathrow Central to Holborn is 62 minutes on the Piccadilly Line and several minutes quicker using the Elizabeth and Central Lines with a change at Bond Street or Tottenham Court Road.

Many passengers, who previously used the Piccadilly Line may swap to the Elizabeth Line for a quicker journey on a more comfortable and spacious train.

The new Piccadilly Line trains will have more space, walk-through carriages and air conditioning, so may well tempt passengers back.

Bond Street And All Stations To the East On the Elizabeth Line Are Only Five Minutes Slower By Elizabeth Line Direct

Consider.

  • Heathrow Central and Bond Street is 38 minutes using Heathrow Express and the Elizabeth Line with a change at Paddington.
  • Using the Elizabeth Line all the way takes 43 minutes.
  • The figures for Liverpool Street are 46 and 51 minutes respectively.
  • The figures for Canary Wharf are 53 and 58 minutes respectively.

Note.

  1. The direct route avoids the change at Paddington.
  2. The change at Paddington between Heathrow Express and the Elizabeth Line is not onerous.
  3. Routes using Heathrow Express are fifteen pounds more expensive.
  4. If you’re desperate for a coffee, you can pick one up, when you change at Paddington using Heathrow express.

I believe a regular traveller to Heathrow, who has easy access to an Elizabeth Line station and in the past has used Heathrow Express will give the Elizabeth Line a chance.

The Jewel In The East Is On The Elizabeth Line

In 2014, I wrote Is Whitechapel Station Going To Be A Jewel In The East?.

Consider.

  • The Elizabeth Line will go through the station with a frequency of up to 24 trains per hour (tph).
  • The two Eastern branches of the Elizabeth Line split to the East of Whitechapel station.
  • There will be four tph between Heathrow and Whitechapel.
  • The East London Line of the London Overground goes through the station with a frequency of 16 tph, that will be raised to at least 20 tph in a few years.
  • The District Line goes through the station with a frequency of upwards of 12 tph.
  • The Hammersmith and City Line goes through the station with a frequency of 6 tph.
  • The station has large numbers of lifts and escalators.

Passengers from all over the Eastern half of London will change at Whitechapel on their journey to and from Heathrow.

Farrington station Connects Thameslink And The Elizabeth Line

Consider.

  • The Elizabeth Line will go through Farringdon station with a frequency of up to 24 tph.
  • The Circle, Hammersmith and City and the Metropolitan Lines will go through the station with a combined frequency of up to 24 tph.
  • Thameslink will go through the station with a frequency of up to 14 tph.

Passengers from Thameslink’s catchment area will change at Farringdon on their journey to and from Heathrow.

Overcrowding On The Elizabeth Line

It is not a surprise to me, that the Western end of the Elizabeth Line is overcrowded.

I noticed it in November 3022, when I wrote So Many Cases On A Train!.

What Can Be Done To Ease The Overcrowding?

These are possible ways to ease the overcrowding.

Increase The Number Of Trains To Heathrow

I would feel the obvious way to increase the number of trains to Heathrow, would be to run direct trains between Shenfield and Heathrow.

Currently, there are these trains.

  • 4 tph – Heathrow Express – Paddington and Terminal 5
  • 2 tph – Elizabeth Line – Abbey Wood and Terminal 4
  • 2 tph – Elizabeth Line – Abbey Wood and Terminal 5

But is there the capacity to add extra trains between Hayes & Harlington and Heathrow through the tunnel?

Run A Service Between Shenfield And Hayes & Harlington

This would add capacity in West London, where it is needed, but wouldn’t add any extra trains through the tunnel to Heathrow.

By timing this service in combination with the Elizabeth Line services to Heathrow, I suspect a very efficient service between Heathrow and both Eastern terminals could be devised.

  • As four tph run between Abbey Wood and Heathrow, four tph would be run between Shenfield and Hayes & Harlington.
  • Going towards Heathrow, the train from Shenfield to Hayes & Harlington would be a few minutes in front of the train from Abbey Wood to Heathrow. Passengers going from Shenfield to Heathrow would be instructed to change at any station between Whitechapel  and Southall, by waiting a few minutes for the following train.
  • Coming from Heathrow, passengers wanting to go to Shenfield would walk across the platform at Hayes & Harlington to catch the waiting train to Shenfield. The Shenfield train would follow a few minutes behind the Abbey Wood train.

Note.

  1. The two train services would run as a pair, a few minutes apart.
  2. No new infrastructure would be required.

Currently, there are eight tph between Whitechapel and Hayes & Harlington.

Four tph between Shenfield and Hayes & Harlington would increase the following.

  • The capacity between Whitechapel and Hayes & Harlington by fifty percent.
  • The train frequency in the central tunnel to twenty tph or a train every three minutes.
  • The frequency between Paddington and Shenfield to twelve tph.

There would still be four tph available for more services.

 

 

 

 

 

January 25, 2023 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

The Southern Entrance To London City Airport

I entered London City Airport by a different route today, taking these pictures as I walked.

Note.

  1. The route is level.
  2. It is on the Southern side of Hartmann Road, which is the main entrance road for the airport.
  3. There is a pedestrian tunnel under Hartmann Road into the airport.
  4. There are stairs and lifts into the Docklands Light Railway station at the airport.
  5. The lifts so all the way to the platforms of the DLR.
  6. The route is level from the lifts to the airport.

This Google Map shows the walk.

Note.

I walked along the path, that runs NW-SE on the Northern side of the various courts and playgrounds.

The entrance to the DLR station is at the South-East end of the path at the junction of Drew and Saville Roads.

This Google Map shows a 3D visualisation of the entrance.

Note.

  1. The path runs on the North side of the football pitch.
  2. The Southern entrance is to the right of blue play area.
  3. Drew Road runs across the entrance.
  4. It looks like there is a drop-off point for passengers, where the car is parked by the football pitch.

Would it be possible to create a waking route from this Southern entrance to a rebuilt Silvertown station on the Elizabeth Line?

This Google Map shows the area between the Southern entrance to the airport and the footbridge over the Elizabeth Line.

Note.

  1. The Southern entrance to the airport is in the North-East corner of the map.
  2. The footbridge over the Elizabeth Line is in the South-West corner of the map.
  3. The large building in the middle is Drew Primary School.
  4. Whytes Road, Saville Road and Leonard Street lead between the Southern entrance to the airport and the A112.

I took these pictures of the A112 and the footbridge a few days ago.

I think it would be possible to run a fleet of small electric shuttle buses on the route.

Elizabeth Line Trains From Silvertown Station

Currently, the following trains pass through the site of the original Silvertown station.

  • Reading and Abbey Wood stopping at Twyford, Maidenhead, Taplow, Burnham, Slough, Langley, West Drayton, Hayes & Harlington, Southall, Ealing Broadway, Paddington, Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road, Farringdon, Liverpool Street, Whitechapel, Canary Wharf, Custom House and Woolwich.
  • Maidenhead and Abbey Wood stopping at Taplow, Burnham, Slough, Langley, Iver, West Drayton, Hayes & Harlington, Southall, Ealing Broadway, Paddington, Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road, Farringdon, Liverpool Street, Whitechapel, Canary Wharf, Custom House and Woolwich.
  • Heathrow Terminal 4 and Abbey Wood stopping at Heathrow Terminals 2 & 3, Hayes & Harlington, Southall, Hanwell, West Ealing, Ealing Broadway, Acton Main Line, Paddington. Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road, Farringdon, Liverpool Street, Whitechapel, Canary Wharf, Custom House and Woolwich.
  • Heathrow Terminal 5 and Abbey Wood stopping at Heathrow Terminals 2 & 3, Hayes & Harlington, Southall, Hanwell, West Ealing, Ealing Broadway, Acton Main Line, Paddington, Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road, Farringdon, Liverpool Street, Whitechapel, Canary Wharf, Custom House and Woolwich.

Note.

  1. All four services have a frequency of two trains per hour (tph).
  2. Paddington, Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road, Farringdon, Liverpool Street, Whitechapel, Canary Wharf, Custom House and Woolwich have a frequency of eight tph.
  3. Heathrow Terminals 2 & 3 has a frequency of two tph and it has extra connections to Heathrow Terminal 4 and Heathrow Terminal 5.

The number of services will increase in May 2023.

 

December 30, 2022 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Extending The Elizabeth Line – Linking To The Chatham Main Line

Preamble

I believe that everybody in the South East of England needs the best access possible to the Elizabeth Line, by train from where they live.

  • The Elizabeth Line serves the important places like Brick Lane, Canary Wharf, the City of London, Heathrow Airport, Liverpool Street station, the Olympic Park, Oxford Street and Paddington station directly.
  • Because of its connection to Thameslink, the Elizabeth Line also serves important places like Bedford, Brighton, Cambridge, Gatwick Airport, Luton Airport and Tate Modern with a single change at Farringdon station.
  • Using the Elizabeth Line, Thameslink and perhaps a bus, it is possible to get to most important places in Central London.
  • The more passengers that use the Elizabeth Line and Thameslink, the more London’s businesses will thrive creating employment and tax revenues.
  • It should also be remembered, that using a train to visit central London, probably cuts your carbon footprint.
  • The Elizabeth Line also cost a fortune, so perhaps by using it, you will be getting some of your portion of what it cost you back.

This post is one of several, where I discuss how to bring more passengers into the Elizabeth Line network.

The Chatham Main Line

This is the introduction to the Wikipedia entry for the Chatham Main Line.

The Chatham Main Line is a railway line in England that links London Victoria and Dover Priory / Ramsgate, travelling via Medway (of which the town of Chatham is part, hence the name).

Services to Cannon Street follow the route as far as St Mary Cray Junction where they diverge onto the South Eastern Main Line near Chislehurst.

Thameslink services to Luton run in parallel from Rainham to Rochester, diverging once across the River Medway at Rochester Bridge Junction onto the North Kent Line via Gravesend and Dartford.

A shuttle service operates on the Sheerness Line which starts at Sittingbourne.

Note.

  1. The main London terminals for trains to London on the Chatham Main Line are Cannon Street (Peak only), St. Pancras and Victoria.
  2. Services stop at Rainham station, so passengers can change to the two trains per hour (tph) Thameslink service to Luton.
  3. St. Pancras has one tph from Strood, Rochester, Chatham, Gillingham, Rainham, Sittingbourne and Faversham stations.
  4. Victoria has two tph from Strood, Rochester, Chatham, Gillingham, Rainham, Sittingbourne and Faversham stations.
  5. Rochester, Gillingham, Rainham and Faversham can turnback trains to London.

The only connections to the Elizabeth Line are.

  • The HighSpeed service to St. Pancras calls at Stratford International, where the connection is tortuous.
  • The Thameslink service calls at Farringdon, where the connection is easy.

As an example say you were going from Chatham to Heathrow Terminal 4.

The National Rail timetable suggests this route.

  • Southeastern HighSpeed – Chatham to St. Pancras
  • Thameslink – St. Pancras to Farringdon
  • Elizabeth Line – Farringdon to Heathrow

Note that the change at St. Pancras is not the easiest.

Extending The Elizabeth Line To The Chatham Main Line

In Elizabeth Line To Ebbsfleet Extension Could Cost £3.2 Billion, I talk about this proposal as described in this article on Ian Visits.

One of the key features of Crossrail To Ebbsfleet (C2E) project is that instead of all trains terminating at Abbey Wood, trains will terminate as follows.

  • Abbey Wood – 4 tph
  • Northfleet – 4 tph
  • Gravesend – 4 tph

This will mean that 8 tph would pass through Abbey Wood station.

Gravesend is not the best place to turn trains, so why not turn two tph at somewhere like Rochester, Gillingham, Rainham or Faversham?

If two tph to Rainham is good enough for Thameslink, surely two tph to Faversham could be good enough?

Extending The Elizabeth Line To A New Hoo Station

In Effort To Contain Costs For Hoo Reopening, I discussed opening the new Hoo station.

Consider.

  • Hoo junction to Hoo station is no more than five or six miles.
  • Aventras have been designed to run on battery power, so I suspect Lizzie’s Class 345 trains could be so fitted.
  • Range would be sufficient for one return trip from Hoo junction to Hoo station
  • Two tph at Hoo station could be handled by a single platform.

It looks to me, that of the four tph to Gravesend if C2E is built, two tph could go to both of Hoo and Faversham.

This assumes of course that digital signalling can fit all the trains on the North Kent Line between Abbey Wood and Faversham.

Chatham And London Main Line Stations

In these routes, I am assuming that there are two tph on the Lizzie Line between Faversham and Heathrow.

  • Chatham and Cannon Street – Lizzie Line to Whitechapel and then District Line
  • Chatham and Charing Cross – Lizzie Line to Whitechapel and then District Line
  • Chatham and Euston – Lizzie Line to Whitechapel and then Hammersmith & City Line
  • Chatham and Farringdon – Lizzie Line direct – Thameslink direct
  • Chatham and Fenchurch Street – Lizzie Line to Whitechapel and then District Line
  • Chatham and Liverpool Street – Lizzie Line direct
  • Chatham and Marylebone – Lizzie Line to Paddington and then Bakerloo Line
  • Chatham and Paddington – Lizzie Line direct
  • Chatham and Kings Cross – Thameslink direct – Lizzie Line to Whitechapel and then Hammersmith & City Line
  • Chatham and St. Pancras – Thameslink direct – Southeastern HighSpeed direct
  • Chatham and Victoria – Southeastern direct – Lizzie Line to Whitechapel and then District Line
  • Chatham and Waterloo – Lizzie Line to Paddington and then Bakerloo Line

Note how Whitechapel is an important interchange, as I said in Whitechapel Station Is The Preferred Interchange.

Conclusion

I do believe that the Elizabeth Line could be successfully extended to Kent.

 

 

December 18, 2022 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Regulator Approves New Grand Union Train Service From Carmarthen To London Paddington

The title of this post, is the same as that of this press release from the Office of Rail and Road.

This is the sub-heading of the press release.

The Office of Rail and Road (ORR) has opened up the Great Western Main Line to competition and enabled a significant increase in rail services between London and South Wales.

These points are made in the press release.

  • The rail regulator has approved the introduction of new train services between London, Cardiff and South West Wales from the end of 2024.
  • The services will be operated by a new open access operator, Grand Union Trains, bringing competition to the Great Western route out of Paddington.
  • Passengers travelling between London, Bristol Parkway, Severn Tunnel Junction, Newport, Cardiff, Gowerton, Llanelli and Carmarthen will benefit from an extra five daily return services and greater choice of operator.
  • The decision opens up the Great Western Main Line to competition for the first time, with potential benefits in terms of lower fares, improved service quality and innovation for all passengers using the route.
  • The application, submitted to ORR in June 2022, was disputed by Network Rail due to concerns about capacity on the network. But following careful consideration and analysis, ORR has directed Network Rail to enter into a contract with Grand Union.
  • Grand Union has committed to significant investment in new trains.
  • As an ‘open access’ train operator, however, it will not get paid subsidies from public funds, unlike current operators along the route.

ORR supports new open access where it delivers competition for the benefit of passengers. In making this decision, the regulator has weighed this up against the impact on Government funds and effect on other users of the railway, both passengers and freight customers.

These are my thoughts.

The Company

Grand Union Trains have certainly persevered to get this approval.

  • The company was created by Ian Yeowart, who previously created open access operators; Alliance Rail Holdings and Grand Central before selling both to Arriva.
  • After multiple negotiations with the Office of Road and Rail (ORR), Yeowart must know how to get an acceptable deal.
  • Grand Union Trains have a similar application for a service between Euston and Stirling with the ORR.

Grand Union Trains also have a web site.

The home page has a mission statement of Railways To Our Core, with this statement underneath.

At Grand Union we are passionate about Britain’s railways. We are committed to the traditional values of providing a high-quality customer service and a comfortable journey experience at a fair price.

I’ll go with that.

The Financial Backing Of The Company

All the UK’s open access operators are well-financed either by Arriva or First Group.

The ORR would not receive any thanks, if they approved an operator, which duly went bust.

So what is the quality of the financing behind Grand Union Trains?

This article on Railway Gazette is entitled RENFE Looks At Entering UK Rail Market Through Open Access Partnership, which starts with this paragraph.

Open access passenger service developer Grand Union Trains is working with Spain’s national operator RENFE and private equity firm Serena Industrial Partners on a proposed service between London and Wales.

That is fairly clear and would surely help in the financing of Grand Union Trains.

The Route

Trains will run between Carmarthen and London Paddington, with stops at Llanelli, Gowerton, Cardiff, Newport, Severn Tunnel Junction and Bristol Parkway.

A new station at Felindre will replace Gowerton at some time in the future.

There will be five trains per day (tpd).

I have some thoughts and questions about the route

Felindre Station

Felindre station is named in Wikipedia as the West Wales Parkway station, where it is introduced like this.

West Wales Parkway is a proposed railway station north of Swansea, near to the boundaries of the neighbouring principal area of Carmarthenshire, and the villages of Felindre and Llangyfelach. The station is proposed to be situated at the former Felindre steelworks, near Junction 46 of the M4 and A48, and near Felindre Business Park and Penllergaer Business Park. The project is in the planning stages, as part of a wider Department for Transport proposal to re-open the Swansea District line to passenger traffic.

This Google Map shows where, it appears the Felindre station will be built.

Note.

  1. The Felindre Business Park in the North-West corner of the map, with a Park-and-Ride.
  2. The M4 running across the bottom of the map.
  3. The Swansea District Line runs East-West between the motorway and the Business Park.

It looks that the new station could be located on the South side of the Business Park.

When High Speed Two Opens Will Trains Call At Old Oak Common?

When High Speed Two opens, all GWR trains will stop at Old Oak Common station for these connections.

  • Chiltern for for Banbury, Bicester, High Wycombe and the West Midlands
  • Elizabeth Line for Central and East London and the Thames Valley
  • Heathrow Airport
  • High Speed Two for Birmingham and the North
  • Overground for Outer London

As Old Oak Common will be such an important interchange, I think they should.

Will The Platforms At Carmarthen Station Need Lengthening?

This Google Map shows Carmarthen station.

Note.

  1. The station has two platforms.
  2. There are certainly pictures of the station with an InterCity 125 in the station. There is a picture on the Wikipedia entry for Carmarthen station.

These pictures show the station.

I suspect that the station will be upgraded to accommodate Grand Union Trains.

The Trains

An article in the June 2022 Edition of Modern Railways, which is entitled Grand Union Bids For London To Carmarthen, gives these details of the trains.

  • Three classes.
  • 2023 start for the service.
  • Cycle provision.
  • Vanload freight will be carried.
  • Electric trains could start between London and Cardiff by 2023.
  • In 2025, trains could be nine-car bi-modes.
  • South Wales-based operation and maintenance.
  • 125 full-time jobs created.

It certainly seems to be a comprehensive and well-thought out plan.

I have a few thoughts on the trains.

What Make Of Trains Will Be Procured?

Consider.

  • Lumo’s Class 803 trains were ordered from Hitachi in March 2019 and entered service in October 2021.
  • So if they ordered their version of the Hitachi trains by the end of 2022, the trains could be in service by July/August 2025.
  • It would probably be easier, if the only fast trains on the Great Western Main Line between London and South Wales were all Hitachi trains with identical performance.

But the Spanish backers of Grand Union Trains may prefer Spanish-designed trains assembled in South Wales. So would a bi-mode version of CAF’s Class 397 trains be suitable?

On the other hand, the Carmarthen and Cardiff section of the route without a reverse at Swansea is only seventy-five miles.

This Hitachi infographic shows the Hitachi Intercity Tri-Mode Battery Train.

Consider.

  • Charging could be provided at Carmarthen using a short length of electrification or one of Furrer + Frey standard chargers.
  • Charging would also use the electrification between London Paddington and Cardiff.
  • A nine-car Class 800 or Class 802 train has five engines and a five-car train has three engines.
  • The Intercity Tri-Mode Battery Train was announced in December 2022.
  • In the intervening two years how far has the project progressed?
  • For the last twelve months, Lumo have been running trains with an emergency battery-pack for hotel power. How are the batteries doing, whilst being ferried up and down, the East Coast Main Line?

Can Hitachi configure a train with more than one battery-pack and a number of diesel engines, that has a range of seventy-five miles? I suspect they can.

I suspect that CAF also have similar technology.

There is also a benefit to Great Western Railway (GWR).

If GWR were able to fit out their Class 802 trains in the same way, they would be able to run between Cardiff and Swansea on battery power.

  • It is only 45.7 miles.
  • Charging would need to be provided at Swansea.
  • GWR could still run their one tpd service to Carmarthen.

It looks like both train operating companies could be able to do as Lumo does and advertise all electric services.

What Could Be The Maxmum Range Of A Hitachi Train On Batteries?

This Hitachi infographic shows the Hitachi Regional Battery Train.

Consider.

  • It has a battery range of 90 km or 56 miles on the single battery.
  • I would expect that by a regional train, Hitachi mean a five car Class 800 or 802 train, like those that go to Cheltenham, Lincoln or Middlesbrough.
  • A five-car Hitachi Regional Battery Train would have a battery that could contain power equivalent to 280 car-miles.
  • Five-car Class 800 or 802 trains have three engine positions.
  • These Hitachi trains have a very sophisticated control system, which I wrote about in Do Class 800/801/802 Trains Use Batteries For Regenerative Braking?

I believe the engineers at Hyperdrive Innovation have designed the battery-packs that replace the diesel engines as simulations of the diesel engines, so they can be a direct replacement.

This would mean that battery-packs could be additive, so the following could apply to a five-car train.

  • Two battery packs could have a range of 112 miles.
  • Three battery packs could have a range of 168 miles.

GWR generally runs pairs of five-car trains to Swansea, which would be 90 miles without electrification.

If five-car trains with two battery packs, could be given a range of 112 miles, GWR could run an electric service to Swansea.

They could also run to Carmarthen, if Grand Union Trains would share the charger.

What ranges could be possible with nine-car trains, if one battery pack is good for 280 car-miles?

  • One battery-pack, gives a range of 280/9 = 31 miles
  • Two battery-packs, give a range of 2*280/9 = 62 miles
  • Three battery-packs, give a range of 3*280/9 = 93 miles
  • Four battery-packs, give a range of 4*280/9 = 124 miles
  • Five battery-packs, give a range of 5*280/9 = 155 miles
  • Six battery-packs, give a range of 6*280/9 = 187 miles
  • Seven battery-packs, give a range of 7*280/9 = 218 miles

Note.

  1. I have rounded figures to the nearest mile.
  2. There are five cars with diesel engines in a nine-car train, which are in cars 2,3,5, 7 and 8.
  3. Diesel engines are also placed under the driver cars in five-car Class 810 trains.
  4. For the previous two reasons, I feel that the maximum numbers of diesel engines in a nine-car train could be a maximum of seven.
  5. I have therefor assumed a maximum of seven battery packs.

These distances seem sensational, but when you consider that Stradler’s Flirt Akku has demonstrated a battery range of 243 kilometres or 150 miles, I don’t think they are out of order.

But, if they are correct, then the ramifications are enormous.

  • Large numbers of routes could become electric without any infrastructure works.
  • Grand Union Trains would be able to run to Carmarthen and back without a charger at Carmarthen. 
  • GWR would be able to run to Swansea and back without a charger at Swansea.

Prudence may mean strategic chargers are installed.

Rrenewable Energy Developments In South West Wales

In Enter The Dragon, I talked about renewable energy developments in South West Wales.

I used information from this article on the Engineer, which is entitled Unlocking The Renewables Potential Of The Celtic Sea.

The article on the Engineer finishes with this conclusion.

For now, Wales may be lagging slightly behind its Celtic cousin to the north, but if the true potential of the Celtic Sea can be unleashed – FLOW, tidal stream, lagoon and wave – it looks set to play an even more prominent role in the net zero pursuit.

The Red Dragon is entering the battle to replace Vlad the Mad’s tainted energy.

South West Wales could see a massive renewable energy boom.

Grand Union Trains will increase the capacity to bring in more workers to support the developments from South Wales and Bristol.

 

 

 

December 3, 2022 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Reading To Heathrow On The Lizzie Line

Last week, I took the Lizzie Line to Reading and came back with a diversion to Heathrow.

I took the train from Reading as far as Hayes and Harlington, where I crossed over the tracks on the footbridge to get the train to Heathrow.

There are two bridges at Hayes & Harlington station, as these pictures show.

Note.

  1. Only the Western bridge has lifts.
  2. The Western bridge will be at the very back of the train from Reading.
  3. It is a long walk from the front of the train to the lifts.

This map from Cartometro shows the tracks through Hayes and Harlington station.

Note.

  1. The Great Western fast lines, which are shown in black on the South side going through platforms 1 & 2.
  2. The Elizabeth Line and the Great Western slow lines, which are shown in black and purple on the North side going through platforms 3 & 4.
  3. The Reading and Heathrow branches are to the West.
  4. London Paddington is to the East.
  5. Elizabeth Line Trains from the Reading or Heathrow branches to Paddington use Platform 4.
  6. Elizabeth Line Trains from Paddington to the Reading or Heathrow branches use Platform 3.

It should also be noted that if you are travelling between Heathrow Airport and any of the Elizabeth Line stations between Hayes and Harlington and Reading stations, you have to cross from Platform 4 to Platform 3 at Hayes and Harlington station.

All passengers will be travelling in the same direction at Hayes and Harlington station.

I feel it is absolutely essential, if you are travelling between Reading and Heathrow Airport using the Elizabeth Line, that you travel in the last carriage of the train from both Heathrow Airport or Reading.

When travelling to Heathrow in Where Should You Travel On An Elizabeth Line Train?, I said these were the positions to travel on the train.

  • Heathrow Central – Eastern end
  • Heathrow Terminal 4 – Western end
  • Heathrow Terminal 5 – Eastern end

It looks like there could be some walking to do if you’re travelling between Reading and Heathrow Central or Heathrow Terminal 5.

I feel that Hayes and Harlington station could possibly have been better designed.

Would it have been better if Platforms 3 and 4 had been designed as an island platform, so that passengers going between the Reading and Heathrow branches would just walk across to the other side of the platform?

  • The tracks would have had to be realigned.
  • There would have been less lifts needed.
  • The Eastern bridge might not have been needed.

I suspect, it would have been the more expensive option.

 

 

 

December 3, 2022 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , | Leave a comment