Subject: Raildate 6th May 2011
From: "Howard Sprenger" <>
Date: 06/05/2011, 20:12
To: "Yahoo Raildate" <>

An edition of more manageable proportions this week...!


Peter Kay's long-awaited London Tilbury & Southend Railway Signalling book is due to go to
print shortly.  Copies will be available from him at 12.95p post free - 92 pages, A4 size, 238
photographs.  The book examines the Midland, LMS, and BR(E) periods, and took 18 years to

Orders can be placed by sending your address with a cheque to P Kay, 6c Park Road, Wivenhoe,
Essex, CO7 9NB.



Rick Ball's photographs of the Vintage Trains Llandudno tour with Rood Ashton Hall and Earl of
Mount Edgcumbe, taken at Stableford on 30th April:

If you want to apply mechanical interlocking to the points and signals on your model railway,
or just want to create an executive toy with a difference, this is for you:



Bittern renamed 4492 "Dominion of New Zealand" at Kings Cross, 16th April 2011:
(Spotter: Howard Benson)

A 'washout' on Canadian National as it happened (language warning):
(Spotter: Richard Buckby)

Tu-154 struggles against in-flight oscillations:
(Spotter: Richard Buckby)


Ralph Rawlinson's Railway Roundup

London Underground
To tackle bottlenecking on the District Line at Earls Court, LUL plan to introduce a new
timetable from December.  Weekday services to Kensington Olympia (which carry fewer than 1% of
District Line passengers) will be diverted to Wimbledon.  Kensington services will remain
operational at weekends, and receive an extra Overground service each hour from May 2011.  LUL
is to replace almost the entire fleet of deep level tube trains with a single type and plans to
unveil the prototype of this next generation in 2015.  Hammersmith & Fulham Council are
expecting a planning application for 7,500 new homes on a 77 acre site at Earls Court.  Under
the proposal the Lille Bridge Depot will disappear.

Regarding the resignalling of the Metropolitan, Circle, District and Hammersmith & City Lines,
Bombardier Transportation intends supplying its Cityflo 650 CBTC equipment, which they say has
been proven in service on 13 metro lines in cities including Madrid and Shenzhen (China).  It
is designed to support driverless operation, but there is no indication that that option will
be pursued in London.  Sub Surface lines cover nearly 200 miles of track and serve 40% of the
Underground network.  LUL say that the upgrade will deliver 65% more capacity on the Circle and
Hammersmith & City Lines and 25% more on the District and Metropolitan Line.

London Thameslink
The five-year plan, commencing in 2013, to transform London Bridge station will get underway
this year with a period of consultation beginning on 16th May with an exhibition at the
station.  The bridge that will carry extra tracks over Borough High Street was due to be slid
into place over the recent Easter weekend, and work is already underway on a new bus station,
whilst new rail stations at Blackfriars and Farington will be completed next year.

GER Thames Wharf Jn - North Woolwich
The North Woolwich Railway completed its line from from Barking Creek across uninhabited and
roadless marshes to North Woolwich in 1847, but it lost its passenger service after seven years
when a diversionary route was opened by the Eastern Counties Railway (ECR) to the north of the
new Victoria Dock.  This new route, which later included the cut-and-cover Silvertown (aka
Connaught) tunnel, was also declared out of use in 2007, but is now to be utilsed for
Crossrail.  See an interesting video here (I particularly liked the comment that the tunnel had
to be strengthened because ships were scraping along the top!):

Work to improve the concourse at Gatwick Airport station is to be brought forward so it is
completed before the 2012 Olympics.  The remaining part of the 53m upgrade, that includes a
new platform, improved track layout and signalling, starts after the Games and is expected to
be completed by the end of 2013.

The new 62m flyover mentioned in Raildate 8th May 2009 has finally been approved.

South Wales Signalling & Control Centre (SWCC)
Newport Area: According to the May edition of Modern Railways, commissioning of phase 1b (the
signalling in and around Newport station) will take place in May.  No dates are given, but two
days of full track possession will be required along with eleven days when two tracks will be
open for trains.  The Arriva Trains Wales site shows engineering work at Newport from Saturday
14th to Tuesday 17th May 2011 (start: 14/05/2011 00:00:00, end: 17/05/2011 23:59:00).
Cardiff Area: On 12th April 2011, Network Rail announced that six stations are to gain
additional platforms as lines in and around Cardiff are resignalled.  Cardiff Area Signalling
Renewal costing 200m is the third stage of the 450m South Wales Major Resignalling (SWMR).
The opportunity will be taken to amend track layouts and prepare for future growth as well as
electrification.  A full possession of Cardiff Central for commissioning is scheduled for
Christmas 2014.

High Speed in Europe
Since the December 2010 start of high speed services from Madrid to Valencia and Albacete,
Spain has taken over the European lead in length of HS lines in use, with 1,948km compared to
1,896km in France.  Both countries are currently building additional lines.

Construction of the new standard (1,435mm) gauge 7.3km long tunnel between Madrid's two
principal stations, Madrid Atocha and Madrid Charmatin, permitting the standard gauge high
speed lines to interconnect, is nearing completion.  The existing tunnels are broad (1,668mm)
gauge only and electrified at 3,000V DC.

Responding to a number of rail accidents and breakdowns in recent months, Transport Minister
Israel Katz said, "I have notified the management of Israel Railways that unless it presents me
with a detailed plan to solve its safety problem within four months, I will close the railways

Tenders were to be invited in April for construction work on the first section of Alaska
Railroad's 51km Port MacKenzie Eion, extension.  The line is intended to connect the deepwater
port facilities at Port MacKenzie with the ARR main line near Houston.

Plans are underway to reopen Uganda's western line.

Sri Lanka
The second phase of the express coastal line will commence on 1st July, whilst the section from
Kalutara-south to Colombo, enabling trains to travel at 100kph, is to be developed under the
third phase of the project.  A new line is to be built between Horana and Kottawa in the
Western Province.

An ambitious plan build a 7-billion-dollar, 421km, high-speed line linking Vientiane to Laos's
border with China has stalled on Chinese politics and social-environmental concerns.



High-speed train boost for Sandwich and Deal in Kent:

Latest news of Thameslink construction work in the London Bridge area:

Fatal accident at Clapham Jn:

BBC article on St Pancras:

Fatality near Chard Junction:

Leamington Spa railway's 1930s waiting rooms restored:

Drivers strikes on LUL:

Monsal Trail Reopening News:

Norton Fitzwarren Triangle developments:

Duke of Gloucester visit to West Somerset Railway:

Angry passengers in Argentina attack trains and staff:

RAIB report into collapse of OHLE on Midlands Metro:

Proposal for trams in Bristol

Haymarket's the end of the line as trams cash runs out:

Disruption on Argentinean Railways:

Changes to Manx bus services:

New workshop for Friends of King Alfred buses:

Free bus to Hillier's Gardens and Stockbridge:

Tourism planning for Pontcysyllte aqueduct:

Delays to Isle of Scilly Ferry service:

Spotters: Richard Buckby, Neil Kearns, Ted Millward, Reg Nerps, Nick Wheat


07/05/11    BBC Radio 4  0607-0630
           "Open Country"  The Welsh Highland Railway

07/05/11    BBC4  2250-2350
           "The Lighthouse Stevensons"  Robert Stevenson and the Bell Rock lighthouse

07/05/11    BBC4  2350-0020
           "Julia Bradbury's Canal Walks"  1/4 The Caledonian Canal

08/05/11    BBC2  1910-2000
           "Richard Hammond's Engineering Connections"  1/6 Burj al Arab, Dubai

08/05/11    BBC4  2000-2100
           "The Secret Life of the National Grid"  1/3

09/05/11    BBC4  2030-2100
           "Julia Bradbury's Canal Walks"  2/4 The Worcester & Birmingham

09/05/11    BBC2  2320-0020
           "Richard Hammond's Engineering Connections"  1/6 Burj al Arab, Dubai

10/05/11    BBC4  2030-2100
           "Time to Remember"  Archive film from the 1950s

11/05/11    BBC4  1930-2030
           "Indian Hill Railways"  2/3 The Nilgiri Mountain Railway

12/05/11    BBC Radio 4  1500-1527
           "Open Country"  The Welsh Highland Railway

12/05/11    BBC2  1900-2000
           "Coast"  Galway to Arranmore Island

12/05/11    ITV1  1930-2000
           "The True Cost of a Car"  The escalating cost of being mobile


For up-to-date information on many of the tours mentioned in Raildate (and others) often with
timings, see the Steam Tours pages at:

All details are correct to the best of my knowledge.  No responsibility is taken for
inaccuracies or changes.

07/05/11-   Ecclesbourne Valley Railway: Steam Weekend

08/05/11    Basingstoke Festival of Transport
           War memorial Park, Basingstoke

09/05/11    North East Derbyshire Industrial Archaeological Society
           Friends' Meeting House, Ashgate Road, Chesterfield, S40 4AG
           Where the Rainbow Ends - The Ashover Light Railway - Origin,
           History and Future by Richard Booth (ALRS Chairman)
           Commences 1930

14/05/11-   ExpoEM
15/05/11    Bracknell Leisure Centre

14/05/11-   Derby Model Railway Exhibition
15/05/11    Moorways Sports Centre, Moor Lane, Derby, DE24 9HY

14/05/11-   Ecclesbourne Valley Railway: Steam Weekend

16/05/11    Peak Railway Association (Sheffield Branch) Filmshow
           The Library Theatre, Tudor Square, Sheffield, S1 1XZ
           Railways Remembered - the 1950s, Rob Foxon
           Starts 1930 (doors 1900)
           Tickets: 6.50 (6.00 concessions) on the door.

17/05/11    Peak Railway Association (Chesterfield Branch) Slideshow
           New Inn, 229 Mansfield Road, Hasland, Chesterfield, S41 0JJ
           Bass Railway Trips, Rodney Pearson

18/05/11    Churnet Valley Railway: Scenic Evening Passenger Service

21/05/11-   Winchester Cathedral: "Models & Music"
22/05/11    GWR model railway and local GWR exhibition
           At the Undercroft, next to the Education Centre in the Inner Close
           Admission by donation - proceeds to the Cathedral Music Fund

21/05/11-   Ecclesbourne Valley Railway: Steam Weekend
22/05/11    Includes Bachmann Model Club "Trackside 2011" event, 21st May

Cheers, Howard.
editor(at)  replace (at) with @

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Issues of Raildate up to and including 18th December 2009 are at:
This page includes a master catalogue of items that have appeared in previous editions of

(C) Howard Sprenger 2011.