South Yorkshire Supertram - new timetables from 28/11/2021

ALEMASTER

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The classic tramway routes (Blue, Yellow and Purple) have timetable changes from 28 November. There are no changes to Tram Train.

The changes see an improvement to the frequency of the Blue route Monday to Saturday daytime but they also see reductions in frequency at less busy times/places due to staff shortages

Yellow route - Meadowhall-Sheffield Centre-Middlewood:
The daytime service continues to run every 12 minutes Mon-Sat and every 20 minutes Sunday, however at what used to be rush hour the service will no longer increase to every 10 minutes. The evening service is reduced to every 30 minutes although on much of the route there are additional services provided by the Blue or Tram Train route (between Sheffield City Centre and Hillsborough the times of the Blue and Yellow route are coordinated).

Blue route - Halfway-Sheffield Centre-Malin Bridge:
The Mon-Sat daytime service is improved to run every 12 minutes (currently every 15 minutes) and the Sunday daytime service remains every 20 minutes. The evening service is reduced to every 30 minutes although on part of the route additional services are provided by the Yellow or Purple route (between Sheffield City Centre and Hillsborough the times of the Blue and Yellow route are coordinated).

Purple route - Herdings Park-Sheffield Centre:
The earliest tram on weekdays from Herdings is extended to Malin Bridge as a Blue route service. The rest of the service Monday to Saturday is reduced to hourly. On Sundays the daytime service remains every 30 minutes but the evening service is reduced to hourly.

Tram Train - Parkgate-Rotherham Central-Sheffield
No changes. Service runs about every 30 minutes all day every day. Runs until midnight Mon-Sat and until 2100 Sunday, the evening service is now better than it was pre-covid!

New timetables are available at https://www.stagecoachbus.com/news/yorkshire/2020/june/st-current-timetables
 
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D365

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Coordinated times between Fitzalan and Hillsborough. Well I never!
 

southern442

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Certain routes of the Supertram must have the lowest frequencies of any mass-transit in the UK? Running every 30 minutes or every hour on certain parts seems more like a bus route than a tram, why would one even bother having the tram infrastructure if it is going to be so under-utilised?
 

harri2626

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Certain routes of the Supertram must have the lowest frequencies of any mass-transit in the UK? Running every 30 minutes or every hour on certain parts seems more like a bus route than a tram, why would one even bother having the tram infrastructure if it is going to be so under-utilised?
Surely this is a result of driver shortage? Also, the only hourly section is on the short two-stop section between Gleadless and Herdings. Otherwise, most of the system gets a fairly good frequency to reflect the change in travel habits (ie. fewer commuters and more off-peak leisure).
 

TC60054

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Surely this is a result of driver shortage? Also, the only hourly section is on the short two-stop section between Gleadless and Herdings. Otherwise, most of the system gets a fairly good frequency to reflect the change in travel habits (ie. fewer commuters and more off-peak leisure).
The purple and tram-train routes operate every 30 minutes (there or there about in the case of the TT) all day, every day, under the normal timetable.
 

harri2626

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The purple and tram-train routes operate every 30 minutes (there or there about in the case of the TT) all day, every day, under the normal timetable.
Yes, but the vast percentage of the system is covered by two routes which offer a much better frequency. The only sections to have 30-minute frequencies are Purple Gleadless to Herdings (two stops) and TT Meadowhall to Rotherham (two stops).
 

ALEMASTER

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The two core routes are Blue and Yellow which both run every 12 minutes Mon-Sat daytime.

The Purple route just serves a couple of stops on a short spur off the main Blue route which only sees significant passenger numbers at peak commuting/school run times.

The Tram Train provides the same level of service between Sheffield and Rotherham as Northern Rail does - 2 per hour - and there are limitations imposed by the Network Rail infrastructure. For the section between Sheffield and Meadowhall the Tram Train runs alongside the Yellow route, so Mon-Sat daytime with both routes combined there are 7 trams per hour Cathedral-Meadowhall South.

Between Sheffield City Centre and Hillsborough the Blue and Yellow route run on the same line, so Mon-Sat daytime there are 10 trams per hour on this section.
Supertram Network Map June 2019.png
 

southern442

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My point was, that anywhere else the construction of a short 2-stop tram branch would not have been given much consideration if it was only ever going to get a half-hourly frequency. Why bother having the Herdings Park route when it would probably be much cheaper to have a half-hour bus service, that wouldn't make much of a dent in the frequencies along the rest of the network?
 

ALEMASTER

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My point was, that anywhere else the construction of a short 2-stop tram branch would not have been given much consideration if it was only ever going to get a half-hourly frequency. Why bother having the Herdings Park route when it would probably be much cheaper to have a half-hour bus service, that wouldn't make much of a dent in the frequencies along the rest of the network?
closure would be politically difficult...

I'm led to believe that originally the line was supposed to continue a short distance further to the site of the old Norton RAF aerodrome to serve a park & ride site but locals successfully campaigned against any development of the site. Additionally there used to be quite a few tower blocks around the Herdings Park terminus which have since been demolished.

Whilst the two stops do serve a residential area and primary school the Purple route mostly functions to supplement Blue route capacity City-Gleadless, effectively Blue short runs, which then nip out of the way onto the Herdings branch to turn.

Herdings Park does have a fairly frequent bus service provided by First, the 1a.
 

harri2626

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If you are wanting to have an intensive service along the bulk of the route from the city to Gleadless, but the line beyond to Parkway doesn't justify this intensive frequency, then the logical move is to terminate one route where demand becomes less. Rather than have a turn-back at Gleadless, it makes sense for the line to run the short distance to Herdings (and the bus interchange). No doubt, when demand increases (which it will), the frequency will improve.
 

D365

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As above, the short of it is that Herdings is esentially an extended turnback siding for Gleadless.
 

whoosh

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My point was, that anywhere else the construction of a short 2-stop tram branch would not have been given much consideration if it was only ever going to get a half-hourly frequency. Why bother having the Herdings Park route when it would probably be much cheaper to have a half-hour bus service, that wouldn't make much of a dent in the frequencies along the rest of the network?

closure would be politically difficult...

....Additionally there used to be quite a few tower blocks around the Herdings Park terminus which have since been demolished.

Demolished just before the line opened, I believe. It's as if, the tram route were planned to serve them, but then, after all the hassle and planning, surveys, consultations, and years of dreaming it takes to get a tramway built in this country - housing plans and the state of the towers had changed in the meantime...

Edit: Maybe not demolished, but certainly cleared of a lot of their residents in preparation.
 

TC60054

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Yes, but the vast percentage of the system is covered by two routes which offer a much better frequency. The only sections to have 30-minute frequencies are Purple Gleadless to Herdings (two stops) and TT Meadowhall to Rotherham (two stops).
Apologies; I replied to your post instead of the post which you were replying to as was my intention.
 

tbtc

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Demolished just before the line opened, I believe. It's as if, the tram route were planned to serve them, but then, after all the hassle and planning, surveys, consultations, and years of dreaming it takes to get a tramway built in this country - housing plans and the state of the towers had changed in the meantime...

Edit: Maybe not demolished, but certainly cleared of a lot of their residents in preparation.

It also happened with the massive Kelvin Flats (https://www.sheffieldhistory.co.uk/forums/topic/16012-kelvin-flats-aerial-photos/ < thirteen stories, around a thousand flats), which were by the current Infirmary Road stop and Norfolk Park (https://static.wikia.nocookie.net/u...olkpark.png/revision/latest?cb=20150823110323 < eighteen blocks of flats, seventeen stories tall) - all knocked down around the time that the tram network opened in the mid 1990s

I don't know why there was a breakdown in communication - how "long term" the tram route had to be planned versos how "short term" the decision was taken to demolish the flats, maybe they had to be knocked down once structural problems were found, I'm not pointing the blame at any one party, just pointing out that the possibly "surprising" route of the tram network was at least in part influenced by several thousand people living in very high density accommodation - I think that the struggles in the early years were at least partly down to the fact that the trams were running past demolition sites rather than heavily populated areas

Herdings Park is a tricky one - I can see why it was built, it was a busy area (and still reasonably populated today), it was a busy bus terminus - but it'd have worked better with either a fairly high frequency service or an extension to a Park & Ride need Meadowhead, or just don't bother with it

There's always a problem with building a brand new network (rather than just converting old lines like Manchester) - councillors etc will demand that their neck of the woods gets something from it - which is why we've got the short Malin Bridge spur too (it might have made more sense to just have everything go to Middlewood, unless the Malin Bridge line was extended to Stannington - it's a frustratingly short spur and messes things about when there's a match at Hillsborough since half the trams turn off two stops short of the Wednesday ground)
 

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