The Anonymous Widower

Shuttling Between Stratford And Meridian Water Stations

The shuttle between Stratford and Meridian Water stations started today with a frequency of two trains per hour (tph).

As a driver said to me, it’s more of a Z, than a shuttle, as it has this pattern.

  • Bishops Stortford to Stratford. – 56 or 53 minute +turnaound of six minutes
  • Stratford to Meridian Water – 15 minutes + turnround of seven minutes
  • Meridian Water to Stratford – 15 minutes + turnround of seven minutes
  • Stratford to Bishops Stortford – 53 or 55 minutes + turnround of 19-24 minutes

As I said in Meridian Water Station Is To Be Upgraded, the diagram takes three and a half hours and it would need seven trains.

Note.

  1. Most of the trains today, seemed to have been formed of two four-car Class 317 trains, although there was at least one train working as a four-car train.
  2. I made two visits to the route today and it seemed to be performing reliably.
  3. One train was cancelled due to a shortage of crew.

These are some pictures, I took throughout the day.

A few thoughts on what I saw and deduced.

The Timetable Works

The timetable seems to have worked well today and the driver who described the timetable as a Z, didn’t say it was crazy or ridiculous.

Passengers didn’t seem to be running around like headless chickens, so they were probably getting the hang of it.

Greater Anglia and Network Rail should be very pleased.

The Stations Have Long Platforms

The stations on the route; Stratford, Lea Bridge, Tottenham Hale, Northumberland Park and Meridian Water, all seem to have long platforms, which can certainly accommodate eight-car trains, which are 160 metres long.

Tottenham Hale’s platforms can handle twelve-car trains and are 240 metres long.

Do Greater Anglia’s Trains Fit the Platforms?

Greater Anglia’s new Class 720 trains come in two lengths.

  • Five-car trains are 122 metres long.
  • Ten-car trains are 243 metres long.

Only the five-car trains will fit the platforms at Lea Bridge, Northumberland Park and Meridian Water and the ten-car trains will only fit Stratford and Tottenham Hale.

It certainly looks to me, that only five-car trains will be able work the Z-shaped service between Stratford, Meridian Water and Bishops Stortford stations.

But this is not a problem.

In Greater Anglia Are Replacing Eight-Car Class 317 Trains With Five-Car Class 320 Trains , I explained how the new five-car train has almost the same capacity as the old eight-car train.

There Are Now Three tph Between Stratford and Northumberland Park 

This is probably only an interim timetable, but it still has tripled the frequency of trains between Stratford and Northumberland Park.

This means that the base frequency for events at Tottenham Hotspur’s new stadium has tripled.

So those going to events at the stadium, will have increased train  capacity from Stratford, Lea Bridge and Tottenham Hale.

As only one train of the two tph between Stratford and Bishops Stortford stops at Northumberland Park, it would be easy to up the frequency to four tph, by getting the second service to stop.

This Timetable Can Easily Be Increased To Four tph Between Stratford And Meridian Water

Currently, the two tph between Stratford and Bishops Stortford, stop as follows.

  • 1 tph – Lea Bridge, Tottenham Hale, Waltham Cross, Cheshunt, Broxbourne, Harlow Town and Sawbridgeworth
  • 1 tph – Lea Bridge, Tottenham Hale, Northumberland Park, Enfield Lock, Cheshunt, Broxbourne, Roydon, Harlow Town, Harlow Mill and Sawbridgeworth

The four tph between Stratford and Meridian Water, that was promised in the STAR project, could be arranged by stopping both trains at Lea Bridge, Tottenham Hale, Northumberland Park and Meridian Water in both directions.

The only extra stops at Northumberland Park and Meridian Water would be as follows.

  • Southbound in Platform 3
  • Northbound in Platform 4

These are the same platforms current services use at Tottenham Hale.

The Proposed Fourth Track Between Meridian Water And Tottenham Hale

How does the now-implemented Z-shaped service fit with the proposed fourth track, I discussed in Meridian Water Station Is To Be Upgraded.

The upgrade is described in the Wiukipedia entry for Meridian Water station, where this is said.

In August 2019, it was announced that funding had been approved for construction of a fourth platform and a new section of track between Tottenham Hale and Meridian Water to enable up to 8 trains per hour to serve the station at peak times.

This must be the earliest upgrade in history, after a new station has opened.

In the related report, I came to the conclusion, that the fourth track would.

  • Leave the Southbound West Anglia Main Line, just to the North of Meridian Water station.
  • Go through the new Platform 1 at the station.
  • Continue through Northumberland Park station.
  • Join the new third track, between Northumberland Park and Tottenham Hale.

This would allow Stratford and Liverpool Street trains to take separate routes to their respective terminals.

In the Meridian Water Station To Be Upgraded post, I said this.

Eight trains per hour (tph) in both directions calling at the station could be as follows.

  • Platform 1 – Two tph from Bishops Stortford to Stratford
  • Platform 2 – Two tph Meridian Water to Stratford
  • Platform 3 – Two tph from Hertford East to Liverpool Street
  • Platform 3 – One tph from Cambridge to Liverpool Street
  • Platform 3 – One tph from Cambridge North to Liverpool Street
  • Platform 4 – Two tph from Stratford to Bishops Stortford
  • Platform 4 – Two tph from Liverpool Street to Hertford East
  • Platform 4 – One tph from Liverpool Street to Cambridge
  • Platform 4 – One tph from Liverpool Street to Cambridge North

Four tph go to and from each of Stratford and Liverpool Street.

At Tottenham Hale, platforms would be as follows.

  • Platform 2 – Southbound Services to Stratford and two tph to Meridian Water.
  • Platform 3 – Southbound Services to Liverpool Street
  • Platform 4 – Northbound services going further than Meridian Water.

I am assuming that the missing Platform 1 and the fourth track through Tottenham Hale station will not be built in the short term, as doing this, would blow the available budget.

Conclusion

The shuttle is working and it will get better, with the addition of a fourth track between Meridian Water and Tottenham Hale.

 

September 10, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Tottenham Hale Station – 9th September 2019

These pictures show the progress on the Underground part of the station.

It will be a big glazed structure.

There was talk of the station being completed this year, but I’d rate it for Sprint 2020.

September 9, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , | 2 Comments

Platform 2 At Tottenham Hale Station Was Ready, But The Signs Weren’t

Trains were passing through Platform 2 at Tottenham Hale station today, which obviously was ready and had been signed off by all the relevant authorities.

But look at this picture of the station sign on the platform.

Had someone forgotten to order the signs?

September 9, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Could A Fourth Track Be Squeezed In At Tottenham Hale Station?

Eventually, when Crossrail 2 is built, there will be four tracks through Tottenham Hale station. It has been anticipated by Network Rail as they have numbered the platforms at the station 2, 3 and 4.

These pictures were taken from the island platform 2/3.

It does appear that another track could be squeezed in, on the other side of the electrification gantries.

Crossrail 2 Four-Tracking

In Crossrail 2 Question Time, I describe a meeting with two Crossrail 2 engineers.

I was told that four tracks on the West Anglia Main Line would be tricky and that the slow Crossrail 2 tracks would be on the East side, with the fast tracks on the West.

In the post, I state that I think, it could be easier to have the Crossrail 2 tracks on the West side, with the Fast tracks on the East.

  • If the Crossrail 2 tracks are on the East side, then, this means that a platform will be needed on the fourth track at Tottenham Hale station.
  • On the other hand, if the fourth track was a fast line, it might be possible to build it without a platform, which would save space.

Each layout has its benefits and disadvantages.

If nothing else, this illustrates some of the engineering problems of Crossrail.

The Ferry Lane Bridge

One of my pictures, shows the Ferry Lane bridge in the distance. This is the bridge in its glory in close-up.

I feel it will need to be replaced before a fourth track is built.

  • Rebuilding the bridge will cause massive disruption to the area.
  • It will have a very large cost.

Does this explain why the STAR project to increase capacity on the West Anglia Main Line was only a three-track solution?

At some point in the next few years, after all the current transport improvements are completed and before the construction of Crossrail 2 is started, this bridge will be replaced.

Hopefully, someone will come up with a way of replacing the bridge, that doesn’t cause too much disruption.

Conclusion

As the Crossrail 2 engineer said, four-tracking of the West Anglia Main Line will be tricky.

 

 

 

 

September 9, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Meridian Water Station Is To Be Upgraded

In the Wiukipedia entry for Meridian Water station, this is said.

In August 2019, it was announced that funding had been approved for construction of a fourth platform and a new section of track between Tottenham Hale and Meridian Water to enable up to 8 trains per hour to serve the station at peak times.

This must be the earliest upgrade in history, after a new station has opened.

I have searched the Internet and can’t find anything more about the loose statement, I quoted above.

Space has been left for the fourth platform, which will be numbered 1, on the East side of the station, as this picture taken from the island platform 2/3 shows.

Will platform 1 be a terninal platform or will it be a through platform.

A through platform connected to a loop around the island platform would allow Southbound trains to split to the North of the station.

  • Trains for Liverpool Street would call in Platform 3 and continue as now to Liverpool Street.
  • Stopping trains for Stratford would call in Platform 1 and take the proposed extra track to Tottenham Hale.
  • Express trains for Stratford could call in Platform 3 and continue as now to Stratford.
  • Platform 2 would still be a bay platform to handle shuttle trains from Stratford.

Eight trains per hour (tph) in both directions calling at the station could be as follows.

  • Platform 1 – Two tph from Bishops Stortford to Stratford
  • Platform 2 – Two tph Meridian Water to Stratford
  • Platform 3 – Two tph from Hertford East to Liverpool Street
  • Platform 3 – One tph from Cambridge to Liverpool Street
  • Platform 3 – One tph from Cambridge North to Liverpool Street
  • Platform 4 – Two tph from Stratford to Bishops Stortford
  • Platform 4 – Two tph from Liverpool Street to Hertford East
  • Platform 4 – One tph from Liverpool Street to Cambridge
  • Platform 4 – One tph from Liverpool Street to Cambridge North

Four tph go to and from each of Stratford and Liverpool Street.

The Extra Track

As I said earlier, the extra track could be a loop through the station with the following layout.

  • Start to the North of Meridian Water station, around the area of the former Angel Road station.
  • Go through Platform 1 at Meridian Water station.
  • Continue South to the East of the other three tracks.
  • Go through Northumberland Park station, where provision has been made to add a new Platform 1.
  • Continue South.
  • It would probably then join with the new Northbound track and go into Platform 2 at Tottenham Hale station.
  • Continue South on the recently-built third track to Lea Bridge and Stratford stations.

The operation of the route looks complicated with the number of tracks as follows.

  • Between Stratford and Lea Bridge Junction via Lea Bridge station – Two tracks
  • Between Lea Bridge Junction and Tottenham Hale station – One track – Bi-directional
  • Between Tottenham Hale and Meridian Water via Northumberland Park station – Two tracks

This would enable a four tph service between Stratford and Meridian Water stations.

Would It Not Be Better To Extend The Fourth Track To Lea Bridge Junction?

Possibly!

But by only having a single extra bi-directional track South of Tottenham Hale, they can achieve the required service without replacing the Ferry Lane Bridge and possibly with a simpler track layout at Lea Bridge Junction.

How Would And Stratford and Stansted Airport Services Fit In?

What I think the eight tph service could be, means that on the third track between Tottenham Hale and Lea Bridge stations, there are four Southbound and two Northbound trains in every hour. This can probably be handled by bi-directional running on the single track section.

But other arrangements would probably have to be made to squeeze some more services into the section between Tottenham Hale and Lea Bridge stations.

Perhaps digital signalling would allow Stansted trains to use the main route and only stopping trains would use the new third track. This could probably mean that Stratford had the following services along the West Anglia Main Line.

  • 2tph – Shuttle to Meridian Water
  • 2 tph – Semi-fast to Bishops Stortford
  • 2 tph – Stansted Express

Would some or all of the train use the High Meads Loop to turn round, as some Stansted services to Stratford have done in the past?

Will A Stratford And Stansted Service Be An Extension Of The Norwich and Stansted Service?

This would be possible and Greater Anglia have enough Class 755 trains to run it.

  • It would add a fourth service in each hour between London and Norwich.
  • It would add a direct service between Cambridge and Stratford.
  • If run at a frequency of 2 tph it would greatly improve connectivity up the West Anglia Main Line to Cambridge and Stansted Airport

Passenger numbers will decide what happens.

Train timings are interesting.

With the current Class 170 trains, I suspect that they could run between Norwich and Stansted in just under two hours, to make a round trip in four hours possible but tight. So can the bi-mode Class 755 trains using electricity South of Ely easily achieve the very convenient four hour round trip?

  • The bay platform at Cambridge would be released for other services.
  • Just four trains would be needed for an hourly service.

Between Stansted and Stratford a limited stop Express would be comfortably under the hour, especially if the High Meads Loop were to be used.

  • Stansted and Stratford would need four trains to run a two tph service,which would probably be Class 720 trains.
  • Norwich and Stratford via Stansted would need six trains for an hourly service and twelve for two tph.

The numbers of extra trains required for a joined-up two tph service between Norwich and Stratford, probably make it unlikely.

I think the service will be as follow.

  • Hourly Norwich and Stansted using Class 755 trains.
  • 2tph Stansted and Stratford using Class 720 trains.

But if the Norwich and Stansted via Cambridge service is as successful, as I think it will be, the passenger numbers might prompt Greater Anglia to add a second train on every hour.

The only problem would be if the new services generated a lot of journeys between Cambridge and Stratford and Greater Anglia felt there should be at least an hourly service.

Will Stansted Services Stop At Meridian Water?

Why not!

  • It is going to be a community of ten thousand houses.
  • Businesses in the are will increase and could be attracted by an Airport service.
  • Modern trains have a very short dwell time.

It will depend on the passenger numbers.

The Shuttle Starts

The station should be receiving the first shuttle trains on Monday the 9th of September,, as I said in The Shuttle Train Between Stratford And Meridian Water Stations Has Appeared In The Timetable.

Looking at the timetable fo Monday from around 14:00, Strastford services through Tottenham Hale station appear to be.

  • 13:56 in Platform 3 – Bishops Stortford (13:15) to Stratford (14:10) – Doesn’t use the third track.
  • 14:13 in Platform 4 – Stratford (14:00) to Bishops Stortford (14:56) – Doesn’t use the third track.
  • 14:13 in Platform 2 – Meridian Water (14:08) to Stratford (14:23) – On the third track between 14:08 and 14:16
  • 14:25 in Platform 2 – Stratford (14:16) to Meridian Water (14:31) – On the third track between 14:22 and 14:31
  • 14:43 in Platform 3 – Bishops Stortford (13:47) to Stratford (14:40) – Doesn’t use the third track.
  • 14:43 in Platform 4 – Stratford (14:30) to Bishops Stortford (15:23) – Doesn’t use the third track.
  • 14:43 in Platform 2 – Meridian Water (14:38) to Stratford (14:53) -On the third track between 14:38 and 14:46
  • 14:55 in Platform 2 – Stratford (14:46) to Meridian Water (15:01) – On the third track between 14:52 and 15:01
  • 14:56 in Platform 3 – Bishops Stortford (14:15) to Stratford (15:10) – Doesn’t use the third track.
  • 15:13 in Platform 4 – Stratford (15:00) to Bishops Stortford (15:56) – Doesn’t use the third track.

Note.

  1. The first time in each entry, is the time at Tottenham Hale.
  2. All Stratford services from Tottenham Hale leave from the island platform 2/3.

It would appear that the two tph to Bishops Stortford and 2tph to Meridian Water are intertwined.

I can follow the first train through the services in the table.

  • The first train leaves Bishops Stortford at 13:15 and arrives at Stratford at 14:10
  • It leaves for Meridian Water at 14:16, where it arrives at 14:31
  • It returns to Stratford at 14:38, where it arrives at 14:53.
  • The train finally leaves for Bishops Stortford at 15:30, where it arrives at 16:23

The 14:10 arrival at Stratford left Bishops Stortford at 13:15 and that the 15:30 arrives back at Bishops Stortford at 16:23, where it forms the 16:47 back to Stratford.

The round trip is three and a half hours and it would need seven trains.

What Trains Will Be Used For The Shuttle?

The current services between Stratford and Bishops Stortford are pairs of Class 317 trains, forming an eight-car train.

These will work well for the time being, but what happens when the new Class 720 trains arrive.

These are five- and ten-car trains and will they be a suitable length to run the Stratford/Bishops Sortford/Meridian Water services?

Five-car may be too short and ten-car may be too long!

The only four-car trains in the area are the Class 710 trains of the London Overground.

Conclusion

There are a lot of questions to answer.

I shall add to this post, when I see what is happening next week.

September 5, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , , | 5 Comments

Tottenham Hale Station Is Beginning To Make Sense

These are pictures, I took of Tottenham Hale station, this morning.

A few of my observations.

The Cladding Is Going On

The cladding is going on the building above the Victoria Line ticket hall.

It appears to be fireproof glass on a concrete and steel frame.

A Wide Island Platform

Platforms 2 and 3 form a wide island platform.

  • Only Platform 3 appears to be in use for London-bound services to both Liverpool Street and Stratford.
  • Both faces appear long enough for a 240 metre long Stansted Express train.
  • There is a step-free bridge at the half-way point of the platform.
  • The original bridge with its escalator is still in place.

It is a design with good potential for handling more services.

  • Platform 3 could handle all services to Liverpool Street station.
  • Platform 2 could handle all services to Stratford station.

Travellers would just walk across the island platform.

The Step-Free Bridge Appears Almost Complete

The bridge appears to be almost complete.

  • The bridge has lifts and stairs with double handrails on both sides.
  • The lift and stairs on the London-bound side are in the middle of the island platform 2 & 3.
  • There is an escalator for London-bound travellers to access the bridge, to give an easy route to the Victoria Line.

There appears to be just a bit of testing before full commissioning.

The Old Bridge Is Still In Place

It still has its up escalator from Platform 2 & 3 and there have been statements that this bridge will be modified to create a link between the Underground station and the developments on the other side of the tracks.

Most Of The Bus And Taxi Interchange Is Complete

With buses and black taxis, the interchange seems finished.

  • Much of North and East London can get a bus to and from the station.
  • Today, I got a 76 bus to Dalston for a two hundred metre walk.
  • But with a heavy case, I’d get a black cab,

Transport planners usual only plan for travellers to and from the City centre.

The Future

The Stratford And Meridian Water Shuttle

This is rumoured to start in September and will probably be the following.

  • Two trains per hour (tph) between Stratford and Meridian Water stations.
  • Stops will be at Lea Bridge, Tottenham Hale and Northumberland Park stations.
  • Trains could be any length up to probably 240 metres, as all platforms are long.
  • Current trains take sixteen minutes between Stratford and Meridian Water stations.

In addition services between Stratford and Hertford East and Bishops Stortford stations would stop at Meridian Water, to give the station a four tph service to and from Stratford.

The new Meridian Water station has been built with a dedicated bay platform for the shuttle service.

The bay Platform 2 is on the right and the through Platform 3 is on the left in this picture taken looking North at Meridian Water station.

Two tph to Stratford would leave from each side of this platform.

The new track between Meridian Water and Lea Bridge stations has been built without a passing loop, so the two tph shuttle must probably be run by a single train.

The shuttle would.

  • Have exclusive use of the new track between Lea Bridge and Meridian Water stations.
  • Have shared use of the existing track between Lea  Bridge and Stratford stations.
  • Call at Platform 2 at Tottenhale and Northumberlan Park station in both directions.

A two tph shuttle would consist of the following.

  • Four journeys between Stratford and Meridian Water stations.
  • Twenty-four intermediate station stops.
  • Two turnrounds each at Meridian Water and Stratford stations.
  • Current turnrounds at Stratford have in excess of twenty minutes to unload and load passengers and for the driver to change ends.
  • Greater Anglia will be running the shuttle in September with nearly nearly forty-year-old British Rail-built Class 317 trains.

As there is not enough time to fit the trains with wings and jet engines, what the hell will be happening?

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.

It dates from the time, when Stansted Express trains used to go to Stratford station.

They didn’t turnround in Platform 12, but used the High Meads Loop underneath the Eastfield Shopping Centre to reverse direction.

  • The train stopped in Platform 12 long enough for passenger to leave and join the train.
  • The driver stayed in the same cab and carried on driving.

I suspect that a Class 317 train could go from Platform 1 at Lea Bridge station, round the High Meads Loop and back to Platform 2 at Lea Bridge station, in these split times.

  • Lea Bridge to Stratford – 6 minutes.
  • Stop in Platform 12 at Stratford – 1 minute
  • Straford to Lea Bridge – 6 minutes.

I believe all these times can be achieved by well-driven Class 317 trains, which gives a timing of thirteen minutes.

Currently, Lea Bridge to Meridian Water takes nine minutes in the elderly Class 317 trains, sharing the track with other trains.

But the shuttle trains will have a clear track, once they are on the new track North of Lea Bridge station.

I believe they could do this in perhaps seven minutes.

Applying, the sort of maths a bright nine-year-old should be able to master.

60 – 2*13 – 4*7 = 6

So could you turn a train round at Meridian Water station in three minutes?

  • London Overground regularly do this at Dalston Junction station.
  • Stepping-up might be needed, where a second driver immediately gets into the rear cab and takes over the train.

But it all leads me to the conclusion, that a single Class 317 train can run a two tph shuttle between Meridian Water and Stratford stations.

The following conditions would apply.

  • The trains must use the High Meads Loop.
  • There would be a fast stop in Stratford, taking less than a minute.
  • Stratford to Lea Bridge times should be six minutes or less.
  • Meridian Water to Lea Bridge times should be seven minutes or less.
  • Stepping-up might need to be employed at Meridian Water.
  • Trains could be up to 240 metres long.
  • The trains would have to be well-driven.

There is also the fall-back position, that the new Class 720 trains to be delivered later in the year will have increased performance.

Development Of The High Meads Loop

The High Meads Loop is an almost unique piece of railway infrastructure on the UK rail network.

  • The simpler Wirral Line Loop under Liverpool turns upwards of twelve tph back for the Wirral Line.
  • The Wirral Line also has four stations on the loop.
  • I believe the High Meads Loop could easily handle a similar frequency to the Wirral Line Loop.
  • The High Meads Loop is also double-track.

I believe, that currently, the High Meads Loop is only planned to only handle the following services.

  • Two tph – Meridian Water Shuttle
  • Two tph – West Anglia Main Line services.

There is a lot more capacity to handle services from the West Anglia Main Line or its branches.

Liverpool Street And Meridian Water Services

When the Field Day Festival took place a couple of weeks ago, Greater Anglia stopped several services, including some Stansted Express services at Meridian Water station to bring festival-goers back to Central London.

Currently, the following Liverpool Street services pass through Meridian Water station.

  • Two tph – Liverpool Street and Hertford East
  • Two tph – Liverpool Street and Cambridge
  • Four tph – Stansted Express

As Greater Anglia’s new fleet of trains, will all be optimised for fast stops, I wouldn’t be surprised to see some Greater Anglia services to and from Liverpool Street station doing the following.

  • Northbound services would stop in Platform 4 at Tottenham Hale, Northumberland Park and Meridian Water stations.
  • Southbound services would stop in Platform 3 at Tottenham Hale, Northumberland Park and Meridian Water stations.

If Northumberland Park and Median Water stations deserve four tph to and from Stratford, surely they deserve the same frequency to and from Liverpool Street. Could both Cambridge and Hertford East services stop at Northumberland Park and Meridian Water station?

  • Both Northumberland Park and Meridian Water stations could get direct services to and from Liverpool Street station.
  • The island platforms at all three stations  could give some useful cross-platform interchanges.

Stations North of Tottenham Hale would get these frequencies to and from the station and the Victoria Line.

  • Eight tph – Northumberland Park
  • Eight tph – Meridian Water
  • Two tph – Ponders End
  • Two tph – Brimsdown
  • Four tph – Enfield Lock
  • Three tph – Waltham Cross
  • Six tph – Cheshunt
  • Six tph – Broxbourne

Note.

  1. With a few extra stops by Stratford services, all stations between Tottenham Hale and Broxbourne could get at least a very customer-friendly four tph.
  2. If your station didn’t have a Stratford service, there would be a cross- or same-platform interchange going at Tottenham Hale station.
  3. Using Stratford and Crossrail may be preferable on some journeys than Tottenham Hale sand the Victoria Line.
  4. In this hot weather give me an air-conditioned Aventra over a furnace on the Victoria Line any time.

A Lea Valley Metro could be emerging.

Stansted Express And Meridian Water

Consider.

  • Various arguments and statistics could be used to decide whether Stansted Express trains stopped at Meridian Water station.
  • I suspect too, that if Spurs continue to play in Europe, that a strong case can be made for stopping Stansted Expresses at Northumberland Park station.
  • But the performance of the trains on the West Anglia Main Line will enable Greater Anglia to do what’s best for passengers and profits.

As Greater Anglia did a couple of weeks ago with the Field Day Festival, they can even be selective.

Stansted Express And Stratford

The Stansted Express is currently a four tph service between Liverpool Street and Stansted Airport.

Consider.

  • In the past, Stansted Expresses ran to and from Stratford.
  • As they did in the past, they could terminate in the High Meads Loop at Stratford.
  • Big International events are held at Stratford.
  • The Central Line links Stratford and Liverpool Street.
  • Crossrail will link Stratford and Liverpool Street at a frequency of twelve tph.
  • Stratford and Tottenham Hale will soon be linked at a frequency of four tph.
  • Extra trains could be needed to run Stansted Expresses to and from Stratford.

I think that running a Stansted |Express to and from Stratford that will remain under review and could be implemented at some date in the future.

In Future Stansted Airport Train Services, I outline how trains might serve Stansted Airport from Norwich and Stratford stations.

Any trains between Stratford and Stanstead Airport, would probably terminate in the High Meads Loop, as they did in the past.

Should High Meads Loop Services Use Platform 11 Or Platform 12?

When Stansted Express services used the High Meads Loop a few years ago, they used to use Platform 12, as the sign still shows.

It could obviously handle the planned four tph, but suppose the High Meads Loop was handling twelve or sixteen tph, as a high-frequency route to Crossrail would Platform 11 be a better option?

Certainly, if the High Meads Loop was handling a lot of services including Stansted Express, Cambridge and local services, there would need to be a lot of thought about how to organise passengers.

There would need to be a fast pedestrian route between Platform 11 or 12 and the two Crossrail/Central Line platforms.

Extra Services That Could Use The High Meads Loop

As I said earlier, I think that if a Stratford and Stansted Airport service is revived, it will use the High Meads Loop.

My preference would be to run a Stratford and Norwich service, that would call at Stansted Airport.

  • It would serve greatly increase capacity all along the West Anglia Main Line, through Cambridge.
  • It could give intermediate stations a direct service to Stansted Airport.
  • Two tph would be a sensible frequency.
  • Calls could include Tottenham Hale, Broxbourne, Harlow, Bishops Stortford, Whittlesford Parkway, Cambridge, Cambridge North, Ely and all stations to Norwich.

A two tph service would need twelve Class 755 trains.

The High Meads Loop would also be available to turn extra local services.

One possibility is to reinstate the Hall Farm Curve and run services between Chingford and Stratford.

The level crossing at Highams Park station is a problem, but in Improving The Chingford Branch Line, I outlined how it could be possible to run four tph between Chingford and Stratford stations, using clever timetabling, digital signalling and good driver aids.

Another possibility is to terminate some London Overground services from Cheshunt and Enfield Town at Stratford, instead of Liverpool Street.

Services could be .

  • Two tph between Enfield Town and Liverpool Street
  • Two tph between Cheshunt and Liverpool Street
  • Two tph between Enfield Town and Stratford.
  • Two tph between Cheshunt and Stratford.

This would mean.

  • London Overground’s preferred frequency of four tph to Enfield Town and Cheshunt.
  • All stations between Edmonton Green and Seven Sisters, including White Hart Lane, would get an eight tph service to London and Crossrail.
  • Four tph in both directions would call at South Tottenham station to give a same platform interchange with the Gospel Oak to Barking Line..

Most of the infrastructure is already in place, although improvements might be needed to the Seven Sisters Chord, that links Seven Sisters station to the Gospel Oak to Barking Line.

Summing up, I believe we could see the following services using the High Meads Loop.

  • Two tph to and from Meridian Water
  • Two tph to and from Bishops Stortford via Meridian Water
  • Two tph to and from Norwich via Stansted
  • Four tph to and from Chingford via the Hall Farm Curve.
  • Two tph to and from Enfield Town via South Tottenham and Seven Sisters
  • Two tph to and from Cheshunt via South Tottenham and Seven Sisters

That is an easy-to-handle fourteen tph.

This map from carto.metro.free.fr, shows the lines connecting the North London Line and the High Meads Loop to platforms 1m 2, 11 and 12 at Stratford station.

Given that freight trains pass through the area to get between the North London Line and the Great Eastern Main Line, there may need to be some track reorganisation to make full use of the High Meads Loop.

Digital signalling would also help, as it would all over the London Overground network.

I think it would not be unreasonable to expect that in some point in the future twenty tph could be running around the High Meads Loop.

A new rail terminus for London would have been created with the ability to handle more trains than either Cannon Street, Fenchurch Street or Marylebone. stations.

Could we see all West Anglia Main Line services terminate in the High Meads Loop?

Probably not, as the platform wouldn’t be able to cope with all the passengers.

Crossrail 2

If Crossrail 2 is ever built, it will terminate at Broxbourne on the West Anglia Main Line.

It will need four-tracking of the West Anglia Main Line between  Tottenham Hale and Broxbourne stations, which will create massive disruption for passengers and residents.

Conclusion

There is a lot of development, that is possible on the West Anglia Main Line to make it into a world-class commuter route and a main line route with good services to Stansted Airport, Cambridge and Norwich.

Cambridge is a big growth point in the UK economy and dveloping the West Anglia Main Line will only improve the economy of the area.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

June 24, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Tottenham Hale Station – 20th May 2019

I took these pictures today at Tottenham Hale station.

The new station is still a shortish time away.

The bridge and Meridian Water station should have opened today.

But as you can see, they didn’t!

 

 

May 20, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Platforms Have Been Renumbered At Tottenham Hale Station

Tottenham Hale station is currently a two-platform station, with a third platform due to open in May to provide extra services to Meridian Water station.

I took this picture as I passed through on Monday.

So now, the two platforms are numbered 3 and 4.

I suppose the new platform will be numbered 2, with platform 1 reserved for when they four-track the West Anglia Main Line.

March 20, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , | 8 Comments

The New Track Through Tottenham Hale Station Looks Complete

I took these pictures of the third track through Tottenham Hale station yesterday.

It appears to be substantially complete, although there is no catenary under Ferry Lane bridge.

Two days later, there was an engineering train on the new track.

The project does appear to be progressing.

January 15, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , | 1 Comment

Tottenham Hale Station – 2nd January 2019

I took these pictures yesterday pf the rebuilding of Tottenham Hale station.

Note.

  1. The basic concrete structure of the station box appears complete.
  2. The footbridge is coming on.
  3. The lift tower on the Stansted-bound platform appears far back on the platform.
  4. Network Rail seem to be seriously pruning trees.
  5. The third track isn’t complete yet.

There must be a chance that the station will open as planned in May 2019.

January 3, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , | 2 Comments