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Telegraph reporting 50-60% of services to be cut due to impact of covid

infobleep

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Northern will be pulling the last two trains on my line, the only trains that run after my latest finish time at work. Not happy. For some local stations on my line the last train has changed from 23:28 to 21:45. Quite a difference!
If it is affecting you perhaps you could write to Transport Focus chief executive Anthony Smith, as he seems keen that first and last services are not scraped.
 
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R

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Which must be absolute peanuts in the short term.
Apart from fuel, and maybe some temporary staff/contractor costs, hardly any costs will change.
Stock leasing costs must still be paid, all staff are retained, and NR's underlying costs will not change.
It does make the railway easier to run in a crisis.
Absolutely but little point running the service with the increased likelihood of staff shortages so better to reign it back and keep it reliable for those people that have to rely upon it.

Note they won't pay the NR variable element of the track access charge for services not run but that just denies NR income that will have to covered by either NR reducing its costs or they will need more from the treasury so it feels like smoke and mirrors. Maybe that's the game that has to be played with treasury to keep the broad structure of the industry in hibernation ready for the rebound come Spring.

Currently its highly likely that international travel will be severely constrained this year so the our industry has an opportunity to make hay why the sun shines and get in some additional revenue if it sets itself upto to succeed.
 

Watershed

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Note they won't pay the NR variable element of the track access charge for services not run but that just denies NR income that will have to covered by either NR reducing its costs or they will need more from the treasury so it feels like smoke and mirrors. Maybe that's the game that has to be played with treasury to keep the broad structure of the industry in hibernation ready for the rebound come Spring.
In theory variable access charges should be set such that addition or removal of services doesn't cause any net change in NR's financial position - whilst there may be less income from a service reduction, wear and tear will also be reduced accordingly.
 

infobleep

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If a service is removed are the train operating companies obliged to provide an alternative like rail replacement buses or taxis? For example if a key worker relied on a train to get to work or get home and there wasn't an alternative, would the train operating company have to do anything? I'm assuming here the key worker doesn't drive.
 

317666

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As of next week GN's Kings Cross - Ely service has been pulled outside of the peaks, meaning Waterbeach is back down to largely 1tph after only a few weeks of an all-day 2tph service!
 

yorksrob

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Currently its highly likely that international travel will be severely constrained this year so the our industry has an opportunity to make hay why the sun shines and get in some additional revenue if it sets itself upto to succeed.

Apsolutely true.

I'm hearing noices that the industry is reducing services less so as to be faster out of the traps in summer this year, to take advantage of that summer demand. I certainly hope that this is true. Last year we were already not far off of the next lockdown by the time S&C services were recovering.
 

Ianno87

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Apsolutely true.

I'm hearing noices that the industry is reducing services less so as to be faster out of the traps in summer this year, to take advantage of that summer demand. I certainly hope that this is true. Last year we were already not far off of the next lockdown by the time S&C services were recovering.

Yes, if restrictions easing coincides with some nice weather, then the industry will need to be very responsive indeed!
 

squizzler

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How does freight fit into this reduced passenger service? It presumably gets its pick of the vacant paths, but when the passenger demand comes back, how can we maintain the momentum behind goods traffic? Freight traffic is back to normal already, and holds opportunity for further growth due to lack of lorry drivers.

The switch of international trade from lorries via Dover to other methods, likely to include freight growth via the tunnel, means that the revived passenger market could be sharing a freight scene that looks very different. Also, Rail Operation Group will soon want passenger style paths (fast and guaranteed) for their "Orion" high speed goods logistics services.
 
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Philip

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What do people think the Scotland TPE and North TPE routes will be like after 25th Jan? Edinburgh starting from Preston? One train per hour across Standedge?

And are TfW cutting all of their Manchester-based services?
 

island

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If a service is removed are the train operating companies obliged to provide an alternative like rail replacement buses or taxis? For example if a key worker relied on a train to get to work or get home and there wasn't an alternative, would the train operating company have to do anything? I'm assuming here the key worker doesn't drive.
There is a reasonable argument that if they held a ticket booked for that train prior to the timetable change that it constitutes a contract requiring the TOC to carry the passenger as booked. Tickets planned to be purchased in the future are based on the timetable in effect at time of purchase. Season tickets, open returns without a train specified, carnets, etc. are shades of grey.
 

221129

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If a service is removed are the train operating companies obliged to provide an alternative like rail replacement buses or taxis? For example if a key worker relied on a train to get to work or get home and there wasn't an alternative, would the train operating company have to do anything? I'm assuming here the key worker doesn't drive.
It would depend on the advertised timetable when they brought their ticket.
 

Watershed

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What do people think the Scotland TPE and North TPE routes will be like after 25th Jan? Edinburgh starting from Preston? One train per hour across Standedge?

And are TfW cutting all of their Manchester-based services?
I think most operators will be running something approximating the 23 March timetable.
 

infobleep

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It would depend on the advertised timetable when they brought their ticket.
So they aren't obliged to provide a last agreed time service? For example there might be a 23:45 and that must be kept? If not do they need to run the timetable passed DfT for them to agree the last train time reductions?

Apsolutely true.

I'm hearing noices that the industry is reducing services less so as to be faster out of the traps in summer this year, to take advantage of that summer demand. I certainly hope that this is true. Last year we were already not far off of the next lockdown by the time S&C services were recovering.
Last year it felt that the services should have been ramped up much sooner. For example there was no train from Reading to Gatwick Airport. To the point that the day before they did return in September, they had to run some emergency only Redhill to Gatwick Airport shuttles because the time you arrived into Redhill just missed the one Thameslink train to Gatwick Airport, due to engineering work elsewhere and less GTR trains running.

That wasn't GWRs fault but not running the additional trains was. I felt the summer might give them some tourist traffic

However maybe commuter traffic returned more from September and actually they had more travel after September than they would in the summer.
 

Jamesrob637

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I think most operators will be running something approximating the 23 March timetable.

Won't go that low on most routes. TOCs have admitted that the March reduction didn't benefit either taxpayer, passenger or otherwise. Some exceptions like Avanti though.
 

MikeWM

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As of next week GN's Kings Cross - Ely service has been pulled outside of the peaks, meaning Waterbeach is back down to largely 1tph after only a few weeks of an all-day 2tph service!

Seems odd that this appears to be the only cut on the Cambridge side of GN. I find it hard to believe that Cambridge currently needs two semi-fasts and two stoppers towards London an hour, but only one 'express'.
 
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Won't go that low on most routes. TOCs have admitted that the March reduction didn't benefit either taxpayer, passenger or otherwise. Some exceptions like Avanti though.
Southern implementing significant reductions on Tattenham/Caterham branches and cancelling the Beckenham Jcn service completely but nothing on other routes.

Both reduced to hourly shuttles twixt Purley in the peaks hardly seems sensible but this isn't exactly helpful.

  • During peak hours a predominantly hourly shuttle will run between Purley and Caterham. Please note, there will be a 70 minute gap between 07:50 and 09:00 towards Purley, and a 77 minute gap between 17:01 and 18:18 towards Caterham

OK they will have the two Reigates and two Befords to change in/out of at Purley but this just forces people into the narrow subway at Purley so hardly helps with social distancing. It all creates more concentrated traffic on the through trains potential creating other hotspots of social distancing either on the train or at the destination stations.

Can't see how it saves much unless the service is heavily reliant upon rest day working.
 

bramling

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Seems odd that this appears to be the only cut on the Cambridge side of GN. I find it hard to believe that Cambridge currently needs two semi-fasts and two stoppers towards London an hour, but only one 'express'.

The TL services do serve more people, so it makes sense. It might then have become necessary to add stops to the 387 services, which would introduce its own issues.

It’s all very well cutting out one of the 2Cxx services from Cambridge where they carry fresh air even in normal times, but this would leave things short further in, especially for journeys like Stevenage to Welwyn or Hatfield, where there remains an element of demand.

And to be honest every 387 service I’ve seen pretty much since last March has been pretty empty. I’m more surprised to see the Horsham to Peterborough service halved, these have loaded consistently heavier than anything to the Cambridge branch, pretty much right through. I would suggest this shows the cuts are resource-led rather than demand-led.
 
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MikeWM

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The TL services do serve more people, so it makes sense. It might then have become necessary to add stops to the 387 services, which would introduce its own issues.

It’s all very well cutting out one of the 2Cxx services from Cambridge where they carry fresh air even in normal times, but this would leave things short further in, especially for journeys like Stevenage to Welwyn or Hatfield, where there remains an element of demand.

And to be honest every 387 service I’ve seen pretty much since last March has been pretty empty.

Fair enough, you'll have a much better idea of the current demand south of Cambridge than I do.

Agree about the 387s. Obviously demand has fell everywhere, but I wonder if Cambridge <-> London has fallen much more than most. Commuters, students and tourists each provide large flows in normal times; but all three are presumably being close to non-extant right now...
 

Ianno87

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Agree about the 387s. Obviously demand has fell everywhere, but I wonder if Cambridge <-> London has fallen much more than most. Commuters, students and tourists each provide large flows in normal times; but all three are presumably being close to non-extant right now...

Some days, it's been well used King's Lynn to Cambridge, and then basically empty to King's Cross!
 

317666

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Some days, it's been well used King's Lynn to Cambridge, and then basically empty to King's Cross!

This is generally the pattern that I've observed too. Not many commuting from Cambridge to London currently, but still quite a few from the Fens into Cambridge.
 

lammergeier

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Yes, if restrictions easing coincides with some nice weather, then the industry will need to be very responsive indeed!
Correct. Which is precisely why on other threads I'm trying to emphasise the importance of training continuing.
 

MikeWM

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This is generally the pattern that I've observed too. Not many commuting from Cambridge to London currently, but still quite a few from the Fens into Cambridge.

Interesting. I've not travelled at 'commuting time' since March, so haven't spotted this. I guess it shows different demographics. I suppose it is possible that most people going to office jobs in Cambridge drive or cycle, whereas those going to London would get the train - so a larger number going to Cambridge aren't doing jobs that can be done from home.
 

43055

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Anyone know about EMR and London Northwestern plans yet?
EMR Intercity are changing the diagrams on Monday so only 2 HST's will be in use rather than 5 and probably some more single 222's in place but no timetable changes.
 

Bikeman78

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Some days, it's been well used King's Lynn to Cambridge, and then basically empty to King's Cross!
All my observations (up to mid December) have shown that shorter journeys are more popular, e.g. the Shenfield stoppers are busy. The stopping trains to Hertford East are quite busy. The Cambridge trains largely empty out by Broxbourne with most of the remainder getting off at Harlow.
 

PG

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How does freight fit into this reduced passenger service? It presumably gets its pick of the vacant paths, but when the passenger demand comes back, how can we maintain the momentum behind goods traffic? Freight traffic is back to normal already, and holds opportunity for further growth due to lack of lorry drivers.

The switch of international trade from lorries via Dover to other methods, likely to include freight growth via the tunnel, means that the revived passenger market could be sharing a freight scene that looks very different. Also, Rail Operation Group will soon want passenger style paths (fast and guaranteed) for their "Orion" high speed goods logistics services.
Something which the Rail Freight Group have been highlighting for a while especially in relation to the future (un)ease of movement of goods between the UK and Europe.
 

bramling

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All my observations (up to mid December) have shown that shorter journeys are more popular, e.g. the Shenfield stoppers are busy. The stopping trains to Hertford East are quite busy. The Cambridge trains largely empty out by Broxbourne with most of the remainder getting off at Harlow.

It’s similar on GN.

The notable flows are things like Stevenage to Hatfield, Hitchin to Welwyn, Welwyn to London, Hatfield to Finsbury Park.

The Horsham to Peterborough service remains quite busy (in comparative terms!) which makes this a bit of a bad choice for a service cut - the string of new towns north of Hitchin provide a completely different dynamic to the Cambridge branch (which has been largely dead off-peak since March).

The observations from others about Cambridge to Kings Lynn are interesting, not my neck of the woods so not something I’ve really seen. I’d agree that my observations would support the notion that these people are generally not travelling south of Cambridge.
 

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