Line speeds around Shrewsbury

Status
Not open for further replies.

30907

Veteran Member
Joined
30 Sep 2012
Messages
13,427
Location
Airedale
Electrification? That's a long standing joke I Shropshire. Many people pleaded for it for many years but most have given up in despair. Norwich is the same size as Telford but they got electric trains, and King's Lynn is smaller than Shrewsbury as well as being a terminus in comparison with Shrewsbury having several other routes radiating out. But Norfolk gets two lines electrified while Shropshire gets none. There must be more to this than is being aired.
yes it's called being at the edge of the London commuter belt. Which Telford isn't - yet.
 
Sponsor Post - registered members do not see these adverts; click here to register, or click here to log in
R

RailUK Forums

Shrop

Member
Joined
6 Aug 2019
Messages
462
So you recognise that local MPs don't support making a massive investment in the line, meaning that the government is also unlikely to do so...

Yet somehow Network Rail are supposed to upgrade it using money they've found down the back of a sofa?
The onus shouldn't be entirely on Network Rail, it should be more widely supported. Trouble is, the attitude of many on these pages seems to be to find reasons why things can't be done, rather than helping to find ways forward and encourage greater support for rail advancement.
 

Peterthegreat

Member
Joined
22 Feb 2021
Messages
565
Location
South Yorkshire
The onus shouldn't be entirely on Network Rail, it should be more widely supported. Trouble is, the attitude of many on these pages seems to be to find reasons why things can't be done, rather than helping to find ways forward and encourage greater support for rail advancement.
Totally agree.
 

Shrop

Member
Joined
6 Aug 2019
Messages
462
Go to Norfolk, and many people moan about not having any motorways.
Are you familiar with Shropshire's only motorway? It's the one that feeds into the M6 which is almost at a standstill for around 3 hours every morning, and often in the late afternoon too. It's the motorway that runs to within around 3 miles of the M6 toll road which many M54 users would like to use, except that the road in between is also at a near standstill for long periods. There's also a lot more hinterland behind Shrewsbury than there is behind Norwich, and you'll find that the A11 to Norwich has no fewer lanes than Shropshire's M54 has. So no, I don't think Norfolk people are that badly off altogether.
 

the sniper

Established Member
Joined
4 Sep 2007
Messages
3,119
Feel free to draw up a business case for it, it'd certainly be nice to have 90mph running.
 

zwk500

Established Member
Joined
20 Jan 2020
Messages
3,639
Location
Milton Keynes
The onus shouldn't be entirely on Network Rail, it should be more widely supported. Trouble is, the attitude of many on these pages seems to be to find reasons why things can't be done, rather than helping to find ways forward and encourage greater support for rail advancement.
This 'wider support' needs to come from MPs. I suspect you'll find your MP to be much more amenable to railways if he or she felt their job to be linked to making quantifiable improvements. The fact your MP seems to have determined that roads are more important to the people of Shrewsbury is a difficult Catch-22 to break. Ultimately, the voters of Shrewsbury must be convinced that rail could be better, in order to force the MP into action.

The attitude of many on these pages is to identify the problems, so that the correct solutions can be identified. There's also a recognition that the pot of money for rail improvements is finite, so the potential solutions must be a responsible use of said money.
 

Peterthegreat

Member
Joined
22 Feb 2021
Messages
565
Location
South Yorkshire
This 'wider support' needs to come from MPs. I suspect you'll find your MP to be much more amenable to railways if he or she felt their job to be linked to making quantifiable improvements. The fact your MP seems to have determined that roads are more important to the people of Shrewsbury is a difficult Catch-22 to break. Ultimately, the voters of Shrewsbury must be convinced that rail could be better, in order to force the MP into action.

The attitude of many on these pages is to identify the problems, so that the correct solutions can be identified. There's also a recognition that the pot of money for rail improvements is finite, so the potential solutions must be a responsible use of said money.
Identifying problems is fine. Unfortunately no one seems to offer solutions.
 

BrianW

Member
Joined
22 Mar 2017
Messages
760
The onus shouldn't be entirely on Network Rail, it should be more widely supported. Trouble is, the attitude of many on these pages seems to be to find reasons why things can't be done, rather than helping to find ways forward and encourage greater support for rail advancement.
The electorate of North Shropshire have opportunity on Thursday 12 December to show support for investment in rail to or via Shrewsbury if they live in or around Ellesmere, Gobowen, Market Drayton, Wem or Whitchurch at the by-election.
 

zwk500

Established Member
Joined
20 Jan 2020
Messages
3,639
Location
Milton Keynes
So what is the price tag?
I don't know for sure, but easily 8 figures, could well push over £100m. It could need pointwork relaying, signals moving, platforms realigning, Culverts and bridges strengthening and so on. There's lots more than just those things as well. And it's only of benefit if you can actually get a train into Shrewsbury station at the earlier time, otherwise you've just bought a 3 minute stand at Abbey Foregate Junction, which will put many more people off than not going quite so fast but keeping moving throughout. The maintenance regime for 90mph is also more stringent, so you may need additional P-way staff and greater time to check tolerances, alignment etc.

And before people say 'that's rubbish, we could do it 30 years ago' remember that Standards have changed and Wages have risen, as has the cost of closing the railway to get the work done. You can't lay 90mph track between trains, it'd need either a series of weekend blocks or a 9-day closure to get it done. I doubt there's a good time for either of those to happen.
 

73128

Member
Joined
8 Dec 2019
Messages
312
Location
Reading
Many of the trains on the route go further than Shrewsbury and aren't bi-modes (or are about to be replaced by them), so only the stopping trains (and occasional Avanti services) would benefit from the wires.
 
Last edited:

zwk500

Established Member
Joined
20 Jan 2020
Messages
3,639
Location
Milton Keynes
Many of the trains on the route go further than Shrewsbury and aren't bi-modes (or are about to be replaced by them), so only the stopping trains (and occasional Avanti services) would benefit from the wires.
Everything in what you quoted is about Linespeed regardless of whether there are wires or not.
 

Shrop

Member
Joined
6 Aug 2019
Messages
462
The electorate of North Shropshire have opportunity on Thursday 12 December to show support for investment in rail to or via Shrewsbury if they live in or around Ellesmere, Gobowen, Market Drayton, Wem or Whitchurch at the by-election.
There's a sad fact about the by-election in relation to transport, which is that a lot of the electorate aren't that interested in trains. I wish they were, but most of the responses in this thread are suggesting that investment into the Shrewsbury to Wolverhampton route simply isn't worth it. So if those interested in railways aren't supportive, why would that much greater number who habitually use their cars, see any relevance in a vote based on how railways might be improved?
 

Bald Rick

Veteran Member
Joined
28 Sep 2010
Messages
22,219
Are you familiar with Shropshire's only motorway? It's the one that feeds into the M6 which is almost at a standstill for around 3 hours every morning, and often in the late afternoon too. It's the motorway that runs to within around 3 miles of the M6 toll road which many M54 users would like to use, except that the road in between is also at a near standstill for long periods. There's also a lot more hinterland behind Shrewsbury than there is behind Norwich, and you'll find that the A11 to Norwich has no fewer lanes than Shropshire's M54 has. So no, I don't think Norfolk people are that badly off altogether.

Yes I’m very familiar with the M54, having watched it being built and using it frequently. I find that it’s not at a standstill for 3 hours every morning, personally, although it does get busy for about 90 minutes on week day mornings, which is when it is best to avoid. You’ll know that the direct link from the M54 to the toll road is currently awaiting a decision on the Development Consent Order, but when that comes work will start almost immediately.

Anyway, back on topic ...
 

Shrop

Member
Joined
6 Aug 2019
Messages
462
Yes I’m very familiar with the M54, having watched it being built and using it frequently. I find that it’s not at a standstill for 3 hours every morning, personally, although it does get busy for about 90 minutes on week day mornings, which is when it is best to avoid. You’ll know that the direct link from the M54 to the toll road is currently awaiting a decision on the Development Consent Order, but when that comes work will start almost immediately.

Anyway, back on topic ...
Yes, I agree that perhaps we shouldn't digress too much. However, I feel inclined to just say that when I worked for Staffordshire County Council in the 1990s, I was actively involved in some of the related work for the M6 Toll design. Way back then there was plenty of talk about building a link from the M54 to the M6 Toll, and plenty of options were under active consideration. The point is, don't hold your breath for it now, this was well before even HS2 was any more than a pipe dream, and look how long that's taken.

Out of interest (albeit digressing again) when I visited Shanghai's Maglev track in 2005, this technology was actively being considered for their Shanghai to Beijing route (and possibly others), since it was already running to Shanghai Pudong airport. However, the developers of this Maglev system (Transrapid) had a serious (fatal) accident at their test track in Germany in 2006 which led, or at least contributed to Maglev losing out to conventional rail. The point here, is that construction then began in 2008, with the whole route of over 800 miles opening to passengers in 2011. Okay, the Chinese have many practices that we may not condone, but compare the speed of their developments to that of HS2, and then realise that the M54 to M6 Toll link is even slower than that!
 

Starmill

Veteran Member
Associate Staff
Events Co-ordinator
Joined
18 May 2012
Messages
19,375
Location
Manchester
The onus shouldn't be entirely on Network Rail, it should be more widely supported. Trouble is, the attitude of many on these pages seems to be to find reasons why things can't be done, rather than helping to find ways forward and encourage greater support for rail advancement.
OK then - what's your suggestion for convincing the Treasury to hand over the additional tens of billions of pounds to Network Rail? Alternatively, if not from there, where else can they get the money required? Because so far I'm very sorry to say that I've seen nothing constructive from you on that, while you're very happy to demand that others "find ways forward" why not lead by example?

a lot of the electorate aren't that interested in trains.
And on that basis how are we going to get them to agree to pur more resources into the railway? A political revolution? Because frankly if we're going for abolishing modern market capitalism then great I'm absolutely onboard for it, but I think that the consequences of trying to do that would be rather larger than increasing the permissible speeds between Shrewsbury and Wolverhampton.
 
Last edited:

the sniper

Established Member
Joined
4 Sep 2007
Messages
3,119
Yes, I agree that perhaps we shouldn't digress too much. However, I feel inclined to just say that when I worked for Staffordshire County Council in the 1990s, I was actively involved in some of the related work for the M6 Toll design. Way back then there was plenty of talk about building a link from the M54 to the M6 Toll, and plenty of options were under active consideration. The point is, don't hold your breath for it now, this was well before even HS2 was any more than a pipe dream, and look how long that's taken.

Come on now, don't be a negative ninny. That's not the spirit.

The plans for it are actually at an advanced stage now, I'd be highly surprised if it didn't happen at this point.
 

tomuk

Member
Joined
15 May 2010
Messages
638
Yes I’m very familiar with the M54, having watched it being built and using it frequently. I find that it’s not at a standstill for 3 hours every morning, personally, although it does get busy for about 90 minutes on week day mornings, which is when it is best to avoid. You’ll know that the direct link from the M54 to the toll road is currently awaiting a decision on the Development Consent Order, but when that comes work will start almost immediately.

Anyway, back on topic ...
Well as you will also know due to delays in going ahead with the M54-M6 Toll link the funding commitment from the toll operator has expired so it now just a link to an expanded M6 J11 roundabout.

On the topic of the Shrewsbury - Wolves line the reality is that it just hasn't been a priority. The Cambrian, Marches and Chester line have all seen upgrades to higher speeds. As the other poster said it was almost done during the re-signalling but was then cut in favour of other higher priorities.

Even if it was upgraded the benefits might well be wasted if the services can't fit into Shrewsbury or the Stour Valley into Brum. I would agree that sorting Wellington would be my priority, the approaches\platform loops are a major bottleneck and add to that block lengths and delays when freight is accessing Donnington. Of course not forgetting the biggest elephant in the room in the world that is Severn Bridge Jnc.

It also doesn't help that Shrewsbury and the rest of the line are in different NR Regions/Routes.

Any improvements will have to wait for electrification which now appears to be gaining traction with Midlands Connect albeit potentially as only a sop to the outside shires.
 

BrianW

Member
Joined
22 Mar 2017
Messages
760
Any improvements will have to wait for electrification which now appears to be gaining traction with Midlands Connect albeit potentially as only a sop to the outside shires.

Six references to Midlands Connect in the Integrated Rail Plan for the North and Midlands: https://assets.publishing.service.g...an-for-the-north-and-midlands-web-version.pdf

Bearing in mind the Government's subsequent recognition of the value of Transport for the North, I hope you're not holding your breath.
 

tomuk

Member
Joined
15 May 2010
Messages
638
Any improvements will have to wait for electrification which now appears to be gaining traction with Midlands Connect albeit potentially as only a sop to the outside shires.

Six references to Midlands Connect in the Integrated Rail Plan for the North and Midlands: https://assets.publishing.service.g...an-for-the-north-and-midlands-web-version.pdf

Bearing in mind the Government's subsequent recognition of the value of Transport for the North, I hope you're not holding your breath.
Well it helps that there is a conservative mayor in the West Midlands and Midlands Connect have only ever asked for more modest improvements than the ridiculous TfN Pennine Base Tunnel. One of the MC asks was improving Birmingham to East Mids links via Midlands Rail Hub. Nottingham in 26 mins via HS2 answers that requirement and then some.

Midlands Connect are acting like a Subnational Transport Body should do coordinating regional priorities, gathering evidence, bring forward suggestions for improvement.
 

city dweller

Member
Joined
17 Apr 2019
Messages
95
Midlands Connect have said the Strategic Outline Case will be handed to Government in Jan for Wolverhampton - Shrewsbury

Which builds on the feasibility study that was published six months ago


Any improvements will have to wait for electrification which now appears to be gaining traction with Midlands Connect albeit potentially as only a sop to the outside shires.

Six references to Midlands Connect in the Integrated Rail Plan for the North and Midlands: https://assets.publishing.service.g...an-for-the-north-and-midlands-web-version.pdf

Bearing in mind the Government's subsequent recognition of the value of Transport for the North, I hope you're not holding your breath.

Midlands Connect said the quick wins were straightening the track in places.
 
Last edited:

Bald Rick

Veteran Member
Joined
28 Sep 2010
Messages
22,219

Wolfie

Established Member
Joined
17 Aug 2010
Messages
4,683
The onus shouldn't be entirely on Network Rail, it should be more widely supported. Trouble is, the attitude of many on these pages seems to be to find reasons why things can't be done, rather than helping to find ways forward and encourage greater support for rail advancement.
As a proud Salopian who is resident in London who works for government l will cite two variants of one word very obviously missing from your post: realism/realistic.

There's a sad fact about the by-election in relation to transport, which is that a lot of the electorate aren't that interested in trains. I wish they were, but most of the responses in this thread are suggesting that investment into the Shrewsbury to Wolverhampton route simply isn't worth it. So if those interested in railways aren't supportive, why would that much greater number who habitually use their cars, see any relevance in a vote based on how railways might be improved?
In a resource-constrained era there are almost certainly other investment options which represent much better value for money.
 

craigybagel

Established Member
Joined
25 Oct 2012
Messages
3,960
yes it's called being at the edge of the London commuter belt. Which Telford isn't - yet.
Even if the local MP is based in London <D
The onus shouldn't be entirely on Network Rail, it should be more widely supported. Trouble is, the attitude of many on these pages seems to be to find reasons why things can't be done, rather than helping to find ways forward and encourage greater support for rail advancement.
With all due respect, it's not really the job of anyone in this page to "find ways forward". You asked why the line hasn't been upgraded like the other lines out of Shrewsbury, and others have (very patiently) explained how at the moment it's a very poor use of limited resources given how little gains it will bring.

It's not the fault of anyone here why the things are the way they are.
 

Wolfie

Established Member
Joined
17 Aug 2010
Messages
4,683
Veiled way of saying Shrewsbury Wolves New St only, and even then I agree with you.
Given that Telford is the largest town on the line if the Salop mafia try that stunt they will have a serious fight on their hands. They have never got over the fact that their sleepy little town has lost importance and still think that it should have everything (see the attempts to downgrade Telford Princess Royal hospital in favour of Shrewsbury). If they want enhancements for Shrewsbury and forget Telford that's me actively in the opposed camp.

Ha ! Well that will go down well in the Republic of Telford.
We posted in parallel. I despise the Salop mafia. They were important in about 1840 and think that they still should be....
 

Bald Rick

Veteran Member
Joined
28 Sep 2010
Messages
22,219
Given that Telford is the largest town on the line if the Salop mafia try that stunt they will have a serious fight on their hands. They have never got over the fact that their sleepy little town has lost importance and still think that it should have everything (see the attempts to downgrade Telford Princess Royal hospital in favour of Shrewsbury). If they want enhancements for Shrewsbury and forget Telford that's me actively in the opposed camp.


We posted in parallel. I dispise the Salop mafia. They were important in about 1840 and think that they still should be....

Don’t worry, it would never happen. No chance of hourly London services either.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Top