die belebende Bedenkung

When trains get shorter

with 2 comments

The interior of a crowded ICWC carriage

North Staffordshire Chamber’s deputy CEO Jane Gratton‘s picture of the interior of a crowded West Coast intercity train is a reminder of the failures of Britain’s dysfunctional railway. When WCML services were re-equipped with Alstom Pendolino trains, not enough carriages were ordered and too many carriages were allocated to first class travel.

In Virgin's 9-car Pendolinos, nearly half the passenger space was (and is) allocated to first class

In Virgin’s 9-car Pendolinos, nearly half the passenger space was (and is) allocated to first class

Although some of the Pendolinos have been lengthened to 11 carriages, with extra standard class accommodation, there are still too many first class seats.

If the HS2 project goes ahead, things could get a lot worse, as North Staffordshire Chamber’s July 2013 briefing noted.


JULY 2013
The Government’s published proposals include indicative train timetables for both HS2 and ‘Classic” trains, and these propose dramatic reductions in train service frequency between Stoke-on-Trent and London, with other impacts as well, including on links to Manchester.

This is effectively because the current Pendolino services from Stoke-on-Trent are very dependent upon the Manchester customer base, which will be lost to the HS2 services. The fast service links from Stoke-on-Trent to London are predicted to reduce from the current 30 Pendolinos per day to just 3 per day, once phase 2 of HS2 is completed in 2032, and there will be similar impacts once Phase 1 (to Birmingham and Lichfield) has been built, due to happen around 2026.

Under the government’s plans neither Stoke-on-Trent nor Crewe, over the border in Cheshire, would have a station of the HS2 Y network. Crewe’s existing station would be served by a few HS2 ‘classic compatible’ trains, but they would be only 200 metres long, compared to the ~260 metres of a current 11-car Pendolino. That works out at around 150 fewer seats.


Written by beleben

November 15, 2013 at 11:59 am

Posted in High speed rail, HS2

2 Responses

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  1. […] to Liverpool mayor Joe Anderson (29 Oct 2013), HS2 is “about capacity”. But as previously mentioned, HS2′s classic compatible trains would generally be limited to 200 metres long […]

  2. […] Part one […]

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