The Anonymous Widower

A Trip To Skegness

Last Thursday, I took a trip to Skegness to get out of the heat.

I took these pictures on the way.

These are my observations and thoughts.

Changing At Grantham

A few minutes after getting off the LNER Azuma, the East Midlands Railway Class 156 train arrived at the opposite face of the wide platform.

Unlike some changes you get on trains in the UK, it was all rather painless and unhurried.

The change coming home was a bit slower, but there is a bar on the London platform, that serves a good selection of good beers.

Grantham To Skegness

The journey to Skegness took around an hour and a half and I arrived at 13:51.

Skegness Station

Skegness station is not the grandest, but it does have six platforms, which is probably a lot for just an hourly service from Nottingham and Grantham.

Skegness

I didn’t stay long, as it was surprisingly too cold and I hadn’t brought a coat.

Skegness To Grantham

The return trip was better, as the train was a more modern Class 170 train.

Surely, when East Midland Railways get their full quota of Class 170 trains, then the Poacher Line between Nottingham and Skegness will be one of the routes, where they will be used.

I also suspect that with 100 mph trains always running the service, as opposed to the Class 156 trains, which are only 75 mph units, there could be speed improvements on the line.

  • Grantham and Skegness is 58 miles.
  • There are a large number of level crossings.

An hour service between Grantham and Skegness could be possible and might generate more passengers.

Rolls-Royce MTU Hybrid PowerPacks

I wonder if this route could be improved by fitting the Class 170 trains with Rolls-Royce MTU Hybrid PowerPacks?

  • The hybrid technology would have a lower fuel consumption and allow electric operation in stations.
  • The prototype hybrid is already working on Chiltern Railways in a Class 168 train.
  • The Class 168 train is an earlier version of the Class 170 train and they are members of the Turbostar family.
  • Rolls-Royce are developing versions of these hybrid transmissions, that will work with sustainable fuels.
  • As we have a total of 207 Turbostar trainsets, these could be a convenient way of cutting carbon emissions on long rural lines.
  • As Rolls-Royce MTU are also developing the technology, so their diesel engines can run on hydrogen, it is not outrageous to believe that they could be on a route to complete decarbonisation of this type of train.

I believe that we could see hydrogen-hybrid Class 170 trains, with a Rolls-Royce badge on the side.

The Massive Greenhouse

I found that this was owned by Fountain Plants.

Is Lincolnshire going to grow the UK’s greens? Or at least give them a good start in life?

More greenhouses like this will enable the UK to create our carbon dioxide and eat it!

 

 

July 17, 2022 Posted by | Food, Hydrogen, Transport/Travel | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Connecting East Lincolnshire

The title of this post, is the same as that of this study by Greengauge 21.

The study goes through all the transport options in East Lincolnshire, comes to some interesting general conclusions, in addition to those specific to East Lincolnshire and then makes this recommendation.

We recommend putting in hand the studies to compare and select the best of the two ways identified here to use electrified net zero carbon public transport to meet East Lincolnshire’s future connectivity needs.

The two ways are.

Reopening the East Lincolnshire Railway

Reopening the East Lincolnshire Railway between Louth and Firsby and running these services.

  • Skegness–Wainfleet–Boston–Sleaford–Grantham–Nottingham
  • Louth–Wlloughby–Alford–Firsby–Boston–Donington–Spalding–Peterborough (and
    thence potentially, London KX).

Note.

  1. There would be a mini-hub at Boston.
  2. There would be good connections to Lincolnshire’s InterConnect bus links.

I wrote about reinstating the East Lincolnshire Railway inBeeching Reversal – Firsby And Louth.

An Express Interurban Bus Alternative

The study describes this option like this.

A Louth–Boston–Spalding express bus, interchanging with the east west Nottingham–Skegness trains with timed
connections at a multi-modal hub at Boston and an improved hourly interval rail service onwards
from Spalding southwards.

One of their suggestions is to extend Thameslink to Spalding.

September 8, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Beeching Reversal – Mablethorpe

This is one of the Round 3 bids of Beeching Reversal projects that the Government and Network Rail are proposing to reverse some of the Beeching cuts.

Maplethorpe is an traditional seaside town  between Skegness and Cleethorpes, which is shown in this Google Map.

Note.

  1. The town has a population of around 12,000.
  2. The beach looks good.
  3. The red arrow shows the position of the former station, which is now a leisure centre.

It looks like building a railway to the original site would be very challenging.

The original railway through the town was the Mablethorpe Loop Line, which ran between Willoughby and Louth.

  • Louth is the largest town in Lincolnshire without a rail connection.
  • Willoughby and Louth stations were both on the East Lincolnshire Line, which connected Boston and Grimsby Town stations.
  • Much of the original trackbeds can still be picked out on the map, but no rail lines exist.

It would be a very large enterprise to rebuild all the original lines.

I think there are two possible solutions to provide a rail link to Maplethorpe.

Boston and Maplethorpe

This Google Map shows the area between Boston and Maplethorpe.

Note.

  1. Maplethorpe is in the North-East corner of the map.
  2. Boston is in the South-West corner of the map.
  3. Skegness is on the coast between the two.

It would probably be possible to build a single track railway on the old track bed between Boston and the Western side of of Maplethorpe.

Skegness and Maplethorpe

This Google Map shows Skegness station.

Note, that it is not a small station and it is in the town centre.

Ever since, I saw the coastal tram in Belgium, I have thought that they are a way of giving new life to traditional seaside resorts.

  • Skegness and Mablethorpe are less than twenty miles apart.
  • So could a tram start at Skegness station, work its way to the coast and then proceed along the coast all the way to Maplethorpe.
  • It could even finish at Cleethorpes station.

I definitely think there are possibilities for a coastal tram.

March 17, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , | 3 Comments