Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Restored Wensleydale Railway Coach Officially Opened

Heritage Railway News


Restored Coach 5345 at Aysgarth Station 


Sir Gary Verity, knighted by the Queen in the 2015 Honours List and instrumental in leading the winning bid to bring the Grand Depart of the Tour de France to Yorkshire in 2014, officated at the official opening of a restored railway carriage on the Wensleydale Railway on 19th October 2015.

 
Members of the Aysgarth Station Project backed by a £5,000 grant from the Richmondshire Community Opportunities Fund and the Wensleydale Railway Trust carried out the work on coach No. 5345.

Unveiling a plaque inside the carriage, Sir Gary Verity said: "I’m delighted to unveil this wonderful railway carriage which has been painstakingly restored by a dedicated team of local volunteers and businesses.

“The carriage will be a huge asset for the Wensleydale Railway, which is one of the longest heritage railway routes in the country, and plays such an important role in tourism. There are some excellent facilities being developed at Aysgarth and I hope this will pave the way for the service’s expansion.”

As part of a scheme to restore the line up to Aysgarth station, Wensleydale volunteers rescued coach 5345 which had been parked in a siding at Redmire station and have spent months restoring it.

Project Chairman, Mr. Neil Barker said they are keen to attract new volunteers to help with the project. The 22 mile long Wensleydale railway is one of the longest heritage railways in the country operating between Northallerton, Leeming Bar and Redmire in the main season, and is considering an extension of the line from Redmire to Aysgarth Falls.


You may also wish to visit my other blog, 'Pen To Paper', which contains interesting posts on a wide variety of subjects.


A selection of railway videos from 'Along These Tracks'
UK Railways - Banbury Trains 16 June 2014 Video 
UK Railways - Trains at Gravesend March 2014 Video
UK Railways - Class 321 and 319 EMUs at Northampton 1999
UK Railways - Freight Through Northampton May 1999 Video
UK Railways - Class 58018 Heading a Ballast Train at Finedon
UK Railways - Banbury Trains at Night Video
UK Railways - Trains at Basingstoke Station 12 August 2013
UK Railways - 375 and 395 EMU's at Martin Mill and Ashford International
UK Railways - Freight Trains Through Northampton May 2013
UK Railways - Virgin Pendolinos Through Bletchley May 2013
UK Railways - Class 350 Desiro EMU Trains at Northampton May 2013
UK Railways - Class 390 Virgin Pendolinos Through Wolverton 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 350 'London Midland' EMU's at Wolverton 2013 Video
UK Railways - Chiltern Railways, First Great Western, XCountry DMU's at Banbury 2013
UK Railways - Class 222 Trains DMU's at Wellingborough Apr 2013
UK Railways - Class 43 IC125 Trains at Wellingborough Apr 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 222 Trains, DMU's, at Wellingborough Apr 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 321 EMU Snakes into Bletchley Sidings 1990's
UK Railways - Class 321 & 350 EMU's at Wolverton Video
UK Railways - Class 321 Network South East leaves Bletchley Video
UK Railways - Class 321 Silverlink Trains EMU leaves Wolverton Video
UK Railways - Class 325 Royal Mail EMU Passes through Rugby Video
UK Railways - Class 350 127 EMU Passes through Rugby Video
UK Railways - Class 321 418 Silverlink EMU at Wolverton
UK Railways - Class 60 015 Diesel Locomotive approaches Wolverton
UK Railways - Virgin Pendolino Class 390 041 EMU at Rugby Video





Monday, 19 October 2015

Aberdeen to Inverness Railway in Line For Upgrade

UK Railway News




Following the success of the Borders railway, another key rail route in Scotland, the Aberdeen to Inverness line, is on track for a £170 million improvement package funded by the Scottish government.

 
When completed the line will benefit from faster journey times between destinations and more frequent trains, and there are plans for a new station at Forres.

The platforms at Insch and Elgin stations will be extended to cope with longer trains, signalling systems are to be enhanced, while Dalcross and Kintore will have initial infrastructure work done that will allow new stations to be built there in the future.

BAM, the company responsible for completion of the new Borders rail line, has been made the principal contractor for the upgrade work.

Opened in 1855, and operated in three sections by the Inverness and Nairn Railway, the Inverness and Aberdeen Junction Railway, and the Great North of Scotland Railway, the line suffered in the 1950's and 1960's with many intermediate station closures.  

Only Inverurie, Insch and Dyce survived.


A selection of railway videos from 'Along These Tracks'
UK Railways - Banbury Trains 16 June 2014 Video 
UK Railways - Trains at Gravesend March 2014 Video
UK Railways - Class 321 and 319 EMUs at Northampton 1999
UK Railways - Freight Through Northampton May 1999 Video
UK Railways - Class 58018 Heading a Ballast Train at Finedon
UK Railways - Banbury Trains at Night Video
UK Railways - Trains at Basingstoke Station 12 August 2013
UK Railways - 375 and 395 EMU's at Martin Mill and Ashford International
UK Railways - Freight Trains Through Northampton May 2013
UK Railways - Virgin Pendolinos Through Bletchley May 2013
UK Railways - Class 350 Desiro EMU Trains at Northampton May 2013
UK Railways - Class 390 Virgin Pendolinos Through Wolverton 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 350 'London Midland' EMU's at Wolverton 2013 Video
UK Railways - Chiltern Railways, First Great Western, XCountry DMU's at Banbury 2013
UK Railways - Class 222 Trains DMU's at Wellingborough Apr 2013
UK Railways - Class 43 IC125 Trains at Wellingborough Apr 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 222 Trains, DMU's, at Wellingborough Apr 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 321 EMU Snakes into Bletchley Sidings 1990's
UK Railways - Class 321 & 350 EMU's at Wolverton Video
UK Railways - Class 321 Network South East leaves Bletchley Video
UK Railways - Class 321 Silverlink Trains EMU leaves Wolverton Video
UK Railways - Class 325 Royal Mail EMU Passes through Rugby Video
UK Railways - Class 350 127 EMU Passes through Rugby Video
UK Railways - Class 321 418 Silverlink EMU at Wolverton
UK Railways - Class 60 015 Diesel Locomotive approaches Wolverton
UK Railways - Virgin Pendolino Class 390 041 EMU at Rugby Video


Sunday, 18 October 2015

Northampton and Lamport Railway On Track For Possible 3 Mile Extension

Heritage Railway News




The Northampton and Lamport Railway, a heritage railway running on the trackbed of the Northampton to Market Harborough line which closed on 26th August 1973, may be on track to extend the 1.5 mile working length of the railway if a public consultation goes in their favour enabling them to be granted a 50 year lease on a section of land.

 
If they get the go-ahead it will mean being able to double the length of their running track as far as the site of the old Spratton station, which closed on 23 May 1949, and stood between Pitsford and Brampton station, (current home of the Northampton and Lamport Railway) and Brixworth station.

The line of the Northampton and Lamport Railway, which carried its first passengers on the 19th November 1995, is 5 miles from Northampton and forms part of a 14-mile linear park known as the Brampton Valley Way, and incorporates a public footpath running alongside much of the heritage railway's tracks.  Therefore, before any land can be leased, visitors to the park will be invited to give their opinions on the proposal before any final decision can be made.



Northampton Steam Railway Limited, which already leases land from Northampton County Council, says it will apply for various grants to fund the extension northwards, which already has planning permission.

If the line extension gets the go-ahead, a safety fence will be erected between the railway line and the public.


You may also wish to visit my other blog, 'Pen To Paper', which contains interesting posts on a wide variety of subjects.


A selection of railway videos from 'Along These Tracks'
UK Railways - Banbury Trains 16 June 2014 Video 
UK Railways - Trains at Gravesend March 2014 Video
UK Railways - Class 321 and 319 EMUs at Northampton 1999
UK Railways - Freight Through Northampton May 1999 Video
UK Railways - Class 58018 Heading a Ballast Train at Finedon
UK Railways - Banbury Trains at Night Video
UK Railways - Trains at Basingstoke Station 12 August 2013
UK Railways - 375 and 395 EMU's at Martin Mill and Ashford International
UK Railways - Freight Trains Through Northampton May 2013
UK Railways - Virgin Pendolinos Through Bletchley May 2013
UK Railways - Class 350 Desiro EMU Trains at Northampton May 2013
UK Railways - Class 390 Virgin Pendolinos Through Wolverton 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 350 'London Midland' EMU's at Wolverton 2013 Video
UK Railways - Chiltern Railways, First Great Western, XCountry DMU's at Banbury 2013
UK Railways - Class 222 Trains DMU's at Wellingborough Apr 2013
UK Railways - Class 43 IC125 Trains at Wellingborough Apr 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 222 Trains, DMU's, at Wellingborough Apr 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 321 EMU Snakes into Bletchley Sidings 1990's
UK Railways - Class 321 & 350 EMU's at Wolverton Video
UK Railways - Class 321 Network South East leaves Bletchley Video
UK Railways - Class 321 Silverlink Trains EMU leaves Wolverton Video
UK Railways - Class 325 Royal Mail EMU Passes through Rugby Video
UK Railways - Class 350 127 EMU Passes through Rugby Video
UK Railways - Class 321 418 Silverlink EMU at Wolverton
UK Railways - Class 60 015 Diesel Locomotive approaches Wolverton
UK Railways - Virgin Pendolino Class 390 041 EMU at Rugby Video

Bluebell Heritage Railway Events For 2016

Saturday, 17 October 2015

New Oxford Parkway/Bicester Village Station to London Line Will Run 18 Hours a Day

UK Railway News




Trains running on the new Oxford Parkway/Bicester Village Station, (the latter replacing the former Bicester Town Station),  to London Marylebone, will be running services for 18 hours a day when the line opens on Monday 26th October 2015.

 
On weekdays the first train on the new line to London Marylebone will leave Oxford Parkway at 5.42am, stopping at Bicester at 5.52am, with the last train leaving London Marylebone on weekdays at 11.10pm arriving at Bicester Village Station at 12.06am and Oxford Parkway at 12.17am.

Chiltern Railways train services will run about every half an hour and more frequently at peak times.

In response to frequently asked questions from the public, the reponses from Chiltern Railways are as follows:

What benefits will the new rail service bring?
Passengers from north and east Oxford, Kidlington, Yarnton, Woodstock and Witney will have easy access to a mainline rail service at Oxford Parkway station, without having to drive through the congested city centre.   Commuters from Bicester to Oxford will have a fast and frequent rail alternative to the crowded A34, whilst the Bicester Village shopping centre will have a direct rail service from the capital, taking many cars off the M40.  Oxford will also gain a rail link to High Wycombe, for the first time in over 40 years, and connections to Wembley Stadium.

Where will the new line stop and what work are you doing? 
There will be four stations along the route; Bicester Town, Islip and Oxford stations will be upgraded to accommodate the new train service and a new parkway station will be built next to the Water Eaton park and ride.

·         Bicester Town station will be completely rebuilt, with a booking office, coffee shop, a bus interchange and parking for cars, taxis and bikes. There will be two platforms, with access from London Road on both sides of the level crossing. The area around the station will be greatly improved, to make it a fitting gateway for the town. A direct pedestrian link will be provided to the Bicester Village Outlet Shopping Centre.

·         Islip station will be substantially refurbished and the existing platform lengthened allow for allow for longer trains. There will be new passenger facilities including a new waiting shelter, ticket vending machines and improved paving. The station will remain as a facility for the local community, and will not be promoted as a railhead for the wider area.

Oxford station will be enlarged by the construction additional platforms on the site of the former parcels depot (on the east side of the station, adjacent to the present platform 3). These will be integrated into the existing station, enabling easy interchange between Chiltern, CrossCountry and First Great Western services.

 The new parkway station at Water Eaton will be built adjacent to the existing Water Eaton bus park and ride, on the site of the derelict grain silos east of the A4165 Banbury Road. It will have a booking office, a coffee shop and a full range of facilities, including secure car and cycle parking. There will be direct and easy interchange with buses to Kidlington, the City Centre and the Radcliffe Hospital.   We have not decided on a name for this station as yet.

What train services will operate?
It is currently expected that trains will run every half an hour between London Marylebone and Oxford. Projected journey times are:-

Marylebone-Oxford from 66 minutes;
Marylebone-Oxford Parkway from 58 minutes;
Bicester Town-Oxford from 14 minutes; and
Oxford-High Wycombe from 38minutes.
All trains will call at Bicester Town, Water Eaton Parkway and Oxford. Some will also call at Islip. Most trains will stop en-route at High Wycombe, with easy connections to Wembley Stadium and other Chiltern stations.

The exact timetable and stopping patterns will be communicated closer to the opening date.

How is the project funded?
Chiltern Railways is funding the work needed for the new Oxford-Marylebone trains; this will be funded entirely by Chiltern Railways, as part of their franchise commitment, and no additional public funding will be required.

 When will you open?

We have reviewed our timescales and we will continue to commence services from Oxford Parkway in 2015.   However, we will not run services from Oxford to Marylebone until 2016.


You may also wish to visit my other blog, 'Pen To Paper', which contains interesting posts on a wide variety of subjects.


A selection of railway videos from 'Along These Tracks'
UK Railways - Banbury Trains 16 June 2014 Video 
UK Railways - Trains at Gravesend March 2014 Video
UK Railways - Class 321 and 319 EMUs at Northampton 1999
UK Railways - Freight Through Northampton May 1999 Video
UK Railways - Class 58018 Heading a Ballast Train at Finedon
UK Railways - Banbury Trains at Night Video
UK Railways - Trains at Basingstoke Station 12 August 2013
UK Railways - 375 and 395 EMU's at Martin Mill and Ashford International
UK Railways - Freight Trains Through Northampton May 2013
UK Railways - Virgin Pendolinos Through Bletchley May 2013
UK Railways - Class 350 Desiro EMU Trains at Northampton May 2013
UK Railways - Class 390 Virgin Pendolinos Through Wolverton 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 350 'London Midland' EMU's at Wolverton 2013 Video
UK Railways - Chiltern Railways, First Great Western, XCountry DMU's at Banbury 2013
UK Railways - Class 222 Trains DMU's at Wellingborough Apr 2013
UK Railways - Class 43 IC125 Trains at Wellingborough Apr 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 222 Trains, DMU's, at Wellingborough Apr 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 321 EMU Snakes into Bletchley Sidings 1990's
UK Railways - Class 321 & 350 EMU's at Wolverton Video
UK Railways - Class 321 Network South East leaves Bletchley Video
UK Railways - Class 321 Silverlink Trains EMU leaves Wolverton Video
UK Railways - Class 325 Royal Mail EMU Passes through Rugby Video
UK Railways - Class 350 127 EMU Passes through Rugby Video
UK Railways - Class 321 418 Silverlink EMU at Wolverton
UK Railways - Class 60 015 Diesel Locomotive approaches Wolverton
UK Railways - Virgin Pendolino Class 390 041 EMU at Rugby Video




Wednesday, 14 October 2015

Churnet Valley Railway Completes BR Brake Coach Restoration

Heritage Railway News


BR Mk1 Brake Coach M35413 Leaves the Churnet Valley Railway Workshops          Photo: Churnet Valley Railway


The Churnet Valley Railway (CVR) based at Kingsley & Froghall station, Staffordshire, has recently completed the restoration of BR Mk1 Brake Second Compartment coach, No. 35413, at a cost of £15,000.


Part of the restoration project at the heritage railway was to transform the coach's former Parcels & Luggage storage area into an 'Open Access' saloon by removing the original metal cages used to secure luggage and parcels while in transit, in order to provide easier wheelchair access.

Included in the revamp was the installation of new windows, an improved lighting system, complete replacement of the heating system, the fitting of new paneling more in keeping with the period in which the coach was in service with British Railways, and finally new flooring with a carpeted section in the saloon area.

Jon Kerr of the Churnet Valley Railway said: "The completion of this project brings an end to the first stage of the planned carriage upgrade, which is to see all of the line's carriages receive an extensive overhaul over the next two to three years, with this vehicle being the fifth to receive such work within the last 18 months.

"However, this is the first Brake Coach to receive such treatment, meaning the CVR is now able to show off a fully restored rake of Mk1's for the first time in history."

The newly restored coach will be in service for the CVR's popular 'Santa & Steam' events throughout December.


You may also wish to visit my other blog, 'Pen To Paper', which contains interesting posts on a wide variety of subjects.


A selection of railway videos from 'Along These Tracks'
UK Railways - Banbury Trains 16 June 2014 Video 
UK Railways - Trains at Gravesend March 2014 Video
UK Railways - Class 321 and 319 EMUs at Northampton 1999
UK Railways - Freight Through Northampton May 1999 Video
UK Railways - Class 58018 Heading a Ballast Train at Finedon
UK Railways - Banbury Trains at Night Video
UK Railways - Trains at Basingstoke Station 12 August 2013
UK Railways - 375 and 395 EMU's at Martin Mill and Ashford International
UK Railways - Freight Trains Through Northampton May 2013
UK Railways - Virgin Pendolinos Through Bletchley May 2013
UK Railways - Class 350 Desiro EMU Trains at Northampton May 2013
UK Railways - Class 390 Virgin Pendolinos Through Wolverton 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 350 'London Midland' EMU's at Wolverton 2013 Video
UK Railways - Chiltern Railways, First Great Western, XCountry DMU's at Banbury 2013
UK Railways - Class 222 Trains DMU's at Wellingborough Apr 2013
UK Railways - Class 43 IC125 Trains at Wellingborough Apr 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 222 Trains, DMU's, at Wellingborough Apr 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 321 EMU Snakes into Bletchley Sidings 1990's
UK Railways - Class 321 & 350 EMU's at Wolverton Video
UK Railways - Class 321 Network South East leaves Bletchley Video
UK Railways - Class 321 Silverlink Trains EMU leaves Wolverton Video
UK Railways - Class 325 Royal Mail EMU Passes through Rugby Video
UK Railways - Class 350 127 EMU Passes through Rugby Video
UK Railways - Class 321 418 Silverlink EMU at Wolverton
UK Railways - Class 60 015 Diesel Locomotive approaches Wolverton
UK Railways - Virgin Pendolino Class 390 041 EMU at Rugby Video



Bluebell Heritage Railway Events For 2016

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

More Trains Planned for Two London Overground Routes

UK Railway News




To increase the frequency of London Overground trains between Dalston Junction and Crystal Palace, Transport for London (TfL) wants to introduce two more trains per hour at peak times increasing the total from 8 to 10 from 2018.

 
Also, TfL plans to add two extra trains per hour on the service from Dalston Junction to Clapham Common via Surrey Quays and Peckham Rye from 2019.

London Overground train services were increased from four to five carriages in 2014. However, TfL says in a report to be discussed shortly, that demand continues to grow.

According to TfL, London Overground demand has grown by 96 percent over the past four years.

The new services will be introduced subject to availability of routes confirmed by Network Rail.


You may also wish to visit my other blog, 'Pen To Paper', which contains interesting posts on a wide variety of subjects.


A selection of railway videos from 'Along These Tracks'
UK Railways - Banbury Trains 16 June 2014 Video 
UK Railways - Trains at Gravesend March 2014 Video
UK Railways - Class 321 and 319 EMUs at Northampton 1999
UK Railways - Freight Through Northampton May 1999 Video
UK Railways - Class 58018 Heading a Ballast Train at Finedon
UK Railways - Banbury Trains at Night Video
UK Railways - Trains at Basingstoke Station 12 August 2013
UK Railways - 375 and 395 EMU's at Martin Mill and Ashford International
UK Railways - Freight Trains Through Northampton May 2013
UK Railways - Virgin Pendolinos Through Bletchley May 2013
UK Railways - Class 350 Desiro EMU Trains at Northampton May 2013
UK Railways - Class 390 Virgin Pendolinos Through Wolverton 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 350 'London Midland' EMU's at Wolverton 2013 Video
UK Railways - Chiltern Railways, First Great Western, XCountry DMU's at Banbury 2013
UK Railways - Class 222 Trains DMU's at Wellingborough Apr 2013
UK Railways - Class 43 IC125 Trains at Wellingborough Apr 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 222 Trains, DMU's, at Wellingborough Apr 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 321 EMU Snakes into Bletchley Sidings 1990's
UK Railways - Class 321 & 350 EMU's at Wolverton Video
UK Railways - Class 321 Network South East leaves Bletchley Video
UK Railways - Class 321 Silverlink Trains EMU leaves Wolverton Video
UK Railways - Class 325 Royal Mail EMU Passes through Rugby Video
UK Railways - Class 350 127 EMU Passes through Rugby Video
UK Railways - Class 321 418 Silverlink EMU at Wolverton
UK Railways - Class 60 015 Diesel Locomotive approaches Wolverton
UK Railways - Virgin Pendolino Class 390 041 EMU at Rugby Video




Thursday, 8 October 2015

Southeastern Trains Providing More Standard Class Seating

UK Railway News




Southeastern Trains Class 375 EMU trains, already undergoing a major upgrade and mid-life refresh, are to having their first class compartments, which are currently located at each end of the train, moved to a section in one of the middle carriages.

 
The movement of the first class seating came about from feedback from passengers and as a result of looking at loading and ticket sales.  In total, 735 extra standard class seats will be provided by the work – eight per four-car train.

According to a Southeastern spokesperson, the Class 375 'Electrostars' will be brighter, lighter and more comfortable for our customers after the fleet is re-sprayed both inside and out.  In addition to these enhancements, all seating is being removed and deep dry-cleaned and fitted with new seat bases.  New carpets and lino are also being laid.

Class 375 in new blue livery
The most striking thing that most passengers will no doubt notice at first is the new Class 375 livery of deep blue with light blue doors on all 112 trains, replacing the present livery of white with yellow doors.

Southeastern said the first train is due back in service at the end of October.


Southeastern Trains Video at Martin Mill and Ashford International, Kent





A selection of more railway videos from 'Along These Tracks' that you may enjoy.

UK Railways - Banbury Trains 16 June 2014 Video 
UK Railways - Trains at Gravesend March 2014 Video
UK Railways - Class 321 and 319 EMUs at Northampton 1999
UK Railways - Freight Through Northampton May 1999 Video
UK Railways - Class 58018 Heading a Ballast Train at Finedon
UK Railways - Banbury Trains at Night Video
UK Railways - Trains at Basingstoke Station 12 August 2013
UK Railways - 375 and 395 EMU's at Martin Mill and Ashford International
UK Railways - Freight Trains Through Northampton May 2013
UK Railways - Virgin Pendolinos Through Bletchley May 2013
UK Railways - Class 350 Desiro EMU Trains at Northampton May 2013
UK Railways - Class 390 Virgin Pendolinos Through Wolverton 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 350 'London Midland' EMU's at Wolverton 2013 Video
UK Railways - Chiltern Railways, First Great Western, XCountry DMU's at Banbury 2013
UK Railways - Class 222 Trains DMU's at Wellingborough Apr 2013
UK Railways - Class 43 IC125 Trains at Wellingborough Apr 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 222 Trains, DMU's, at Wellingborough Apr 2013 Video
UK Railways - Class 321 EMU Snakes into Bletchley Sidings 1990's
UK Railways - Class 321 & 350 EMU's at Wolverton Video
UK Railways - Class 321 Network South East leaves Bletchley Video
UK Railways - Class 321 Silverlink Trains EMU leaves Wolverton Video
UK Railways - Class 325 Royal Mail EMU Passes through Rugby Video
UK Railways - Class 350 127 EMU Passes through Rugby Video
UK Railways - Class 321 418 Silverlink EMU at Wolverton
UK Railways - Class 60 015 Diesel Locomotive approaches Wolverton
UK Railways - Virgin Pendolino Class 390 041 EMU at Rugby Video





Class 67s 'Royal Sovereign' and 'Diamond Jubilee' Locos Northampton

During the reconstruction of Northampton's railway station in 2014, I decided to take a trip there on the 24th June to see how thing...