Electrification of rail linesBack to Forum
Anonymous1 Oct 2015
Good news it is when the government “unpauses” (horrible language) the plans for electrification of the Midland Main Line (MML) and the Transpennine Line(TPL).
“Network Rail to restart electrification of train lines”.(BBC 30-9-15)
“Dismay as electrification plans are ‘un-paused’ but delayed by four years” (Railnews 30-9-15)
“Network Rail to restart paused electrification projects”. (Global Rail News 30-9-15)
The important things to note are that the TPL scheme is Manchester to York to be finished in 2022, while the MML one from Bedford to Sheffield will not be finished until 2023 – 2/3 years later than originally planned. This is assuming that all goes well.
However, the York to Hull and Sheffield to Leeds plans are in limbo, on a back burner or just plain forgotten about. Well something is better than nothing I suppose.1 Oct 2015
At the risk of being accused of being overly political, the commentariat were stating last night that the timing was (ahem) conveniently ahead of the forthcoming Tory party conference – which is taking place in Manchester. As Gideon Osborne is the MP for Tatton, in the leafy Cheshire stock-broker belt south-west of Manchester, he has a clear interest in unlocking anything which will further his “Northern Powerhouse” concept – including unveiling (probably foreign-made) locos with “Northern Powerhouse” adorning their sides.
Oh, and just how many Tory MPs are returned in either Hull, Leeds or Sheffield?1 Oct 2015
Let us not forget they have yet to properly specify the scope of the project in terms of accompanying work to shorten journey time nor is it costed this yet
In theory this is good news but need to wait to see the detail1 Oct 2015
Great news that it is back on the agenda and “happening”.
The problem is that since the last major electrification of the network was the ECML in the 80’s. In the intervening years the railways were restructured (see other thread) and as a result of this pre-post change (won’t use the horrible P word), a massive amount of skills were lost. It now means that after inflation – the costs have increased and electrification is now costing 4 x more than back then. Some cost increase beyond inflation is understandable – but that is a rather substantial amount. There is a severe lack of project management skills & knowledge in this area (hopefully quickly being re-acquired with the electrification projects around the North West and shifting onto the GWML). Sheffield to Doncaster or Leeds has to be electrified to fill in the “gap” – if they don’t then plain stupid.
I hope they fill in with some other schemes that were on the agenda – though I’m not sure of the merits of electrifying Reading to Southampton when only freight trains at best would use the overhead wires. No doubt even Manchester – Sheffield may be electrified in future – though that would be somewhat ironic.1 Oct 2015
Who are they considering hiring…..The Snail & Tortoise construction company !!
One of my local line’s was extended and electrified . The project started in 2007 and was completed in October 2010, at an estimated cost of £300 million.1 Oct 2015
Having spent nearly 4 hours crawling from near Tatton on the motorways past Manchester to the M62 towards Leeds (on my way home yesterday) it amazes me that anyone who needs transpennine links would vote for a chancellor who “delays” the northern powerhouse line!
Sadly I could not ask the other sufferers what they thought of this powerhouse – all were miserably sat in their cars when they could have walked faster!
For the information of the Londoners in the forum it was markedly slower than the M25 at rush hours.1 Oct 2015
Another advantage for London commuters is the electrification of the Barking – Gospel Oak route.
“J Murphy & Sons to carry out electrification of Gospel Oak-Barking route”.(Rail Technology Magazine 29-9-15)
When will northern commuters (anybody north of Birmingham up to Wick) get the same preferencial treatment?1 Oct 2015
“Elizabeth Line: Boris Johnson Has A Billion Reasons To Thank The EU For Crossrail” (Huffington Post 23-2-16)
It just shows how hypocritical BJ is.28 Feb 2016
You don’t need to be in the EU to secure a loan from the EIB. It’s the credit worthiness of the institution that matters most especially ones that pay back debt and interest so they can offer subsidised loans to some developing countries.29 Feb 2016