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£15m GCR reunification plan announced

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by railway, Oct 16, 2010.

  1. oddsocks

    oddsocks Well-Known Member

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    There's a fair bit of "Spin" in that article I reckon, an example being that it reads as if the Loughborough Station Canopy job is complete. Not so by a long way!
     
  2. campainr

    campainr Well-Known Member

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    If you want a more reliable source, the Spring 2012 edition of GCR Main Line has a "question and answer" article on the Gap proposals very similar to something they did a couple of years ago. Apparently planning is still on going with a lot of work done "behind the scenes". They also list the advantages of a single track connection over double track.
     
  3. JMJR1000

    JMJR1000 Member

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    That's most likely down to the fact that they face the same problem that a few other websites do, releasing regular updates.

    A lot of people (on this forum in particular) complain about some websites not having frequent enough news updates, and I suspect the GCRD probably suffer the most with this problem, as much of their work (behind the scenes or talking with potential interested parties) takes a long time and needs to be kept private, until such time.

    As a result, hardly any news is given because most of what they might have, has to be kept secret. So if they've hardly any regular updates, besides imformation (which can be found easily enough on Wikipedia) theres no reason to be wasting money, on a website when you can't really show much progress regularly, is there?

    If they want to tell us big news at any point in the future, they can simply put it up on the GCR website.
     
  4. 5786Dan

    5786Dan New Member

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    Two joined up double tracks would be great if it's not possible to fit a bouble track on the bridge. I'm sure a bit of clever timetabling would minimise the problem of a single track area.
     
  5. The Saggin' Dragon

    The Saggin' Dragon Nat Pres stalwart Staff Member Moderator

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    I personally would have thought that a project of this magnitude, one of the biggest ever undertakings in railway preservation, that will be dependent on public funding, private and corporate donations, would see publicity as one of its earliest basic requirements. Check out the website for the Penrith - Keswick railway project, they may be equally far away from any sort of reality but have a very informative website.
     
  6. steamdream

    steamdream Member

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    Secrecy, elusivity seem the characteristic of the GCR! see their "yahoo groups": 1-2 posts(in bright days only!!) each about day .and posts not very exciting or interesting by the way!
    Compare with the Blubell yahoogroups: about 20 (sometimes twice more when topics are exciting like the Tip one) / day!
    what a pity for one of the major and very challenging preservation centre!
    regards
    noel
     
  7. guard_jamie

    guard_jamie Part of the furniture

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    I'm surprised that a single line bridge is being considered - surely a lot of the necessary effort to install a single line bridge is hardly expanded to install a double one? Payments to NR, contractors etc?
     
  8. stevepurves

    stevepurves New Member

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    Just to enlighten those to the gist of whats in 'Main Line'...
    - A lot is still happening behind the scenes since the topographical survey,
    - A single line bridge would save £4-5m, the ex reading bridges would form a single track double span over the MML, canal bridge and A60 bridge will be overhauled then to single track 'standards'
    - Some test digging on the 'embankment' site is dues to start...

    Steve
     
  9. JMJR1000

    JMJR1000 Member

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    That's good to hear Steve, still it's a pity that it won't be double track, but as I said before, I may be a bit of a dreamer, but I am realistic and a savings of 4-5 million is (especially in this current climate) a big difference.

    In fact, when you consider the current financial woes, this might just be the game changer they need. Afterall, theres no denying that a 4-5 million pound reduction in the cost would make it a more viable proposition.

    10 vs 15 million... I think we know who'd win, hands down...

    And perhaps more crucially, I suspect most people's doubts on this project have been down to the fact that, they wanted to rebuild this gap in double track form, which for many, must have perhaps looked like a pie in the sky... Certainly when you consider the amount of money that would be required for such small stretch of line. But in single track form, I suspect people's tunes will most likely change now...

    But as I said before, it wouldn't be impossible for them, waaay down the line in the future, to widen it into double track. If the desire to do so is still there that is...

    But I finish with this, better to have the two lines linked together by a single track, then no link at all...
     
  10. guard_jamie

    guard_jamie Part of the furniture

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    Set it up like Saltash - 'box at either end with a token instrument, catchers and collectors at both ends, high speed points...
     
  11. pmh_74

    pmh_74 Well-Known Member

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    Well, I haven't read the latest 'Main Line' yet but I find the suggestion above of a single-track double-span bridge interesting. It has been said for years and years that NR would not permit a central pillar between the fast and slow lines, which is largely why various other second hand bridges have been unsuitable over the years... if that has changed, then I would have thought a double-track double-span bridge would have been far cheaper than a double-track single-span bridge, and that is the next thing I would be looking into. Particularly since each span is likely to be a more 'normal' size and thus the chances of a suitable second hand structure becoming available must be improved.

    Interesting... I can't help thinking that a single track link is something we would regret for many years to come, once we find what an operational bottleneck it becomes. I'd almost rather not bother, personally. As with any job, if it's worth doing, it's worth doing properly.

    Phil
     
  12. sycamore

    sycamore Member

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    Really? Not sure how the S&C copes at Ribblehead! I would have thought the outskirts of a station in the middle of the line would be the quietist stretch of track, the far ends being the busiest? May be worth putting in the foundations / abutments for a double width formation with single width bridge decks? I believe this was common practice on some lines (KWVR etc...)Just a thought.

    Will
     
  13. JMJR1000

    JMJR1000 Member

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    I agree with you totally Phil, I too would much prefer the missing section to be reinstated with double track, though I suspect several individuals will responed by saying "What operational bottleneck?"

    It's no secret that on this thread, and several others, there have been those who have said that if the entire GCR (including the missing section in the middle) was double tracked throughout, there would be next to zero chance that the railway would ever use the line's whole capacity for train services, and I can't deny that they do have a point, partly...

    I look at it this way, whether they bridge the gap in single or double form, to achieve their aim of doubling the line throughout it's entirety, they'll need to redouble the GCRN's 9 miles, and then of course there's the matter of redoubling the track to Leicester North aswell.

    Now all this isn't going to come cheap, but I'm not saying it isn't going to happen, just that it's going to take time, which means that if they do rebuild that stretch into single track form, it's going to be a long way down the road before they have to face that regret, probably many years.

    Now when they have redoubled the entire line, then perhaps by then they'll realise this and redouble that section, expensive yes, but so many years down the line that it probably wouldn't matter as much. I'm sure that if they have the disire to do so, it will be done, that section will be double track, be it when they rebuild the missing section, or do it further down the line at a later date.

    Now I'm someone who believes that many things can be achieved, but I've learned that you also got to be realistic.

    But at the end of the day, I look forward to the day the two lines are linked, and then they can finally show their real potential...
     
  14. ghost

    ghost Well-Known Member

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    Is that aim actually still 'on the books'? I haven't heard it mentioned for a while - just the long term aim of joining the 2 sections.


    Keith
     
  15. JMJR1000

    JMJR1000 Member

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    No, its not exactly 'on the books' per se... But most evidence would point to it being their aim, long term that is. The fact that the GCR's biggest aim is to recreate the atmosphere of a mainline route during the steam era, which would imply double track as being a big factor in this aim, is just one example. Whether it will happen, I can't say for sure, I hope so, someday...

    Though on a side note, but sticking to the topic of double track, there is a certain other railway in the cotswolds that has mentioned the possibility of double track in the future, quite recently aswell. Although, like the GCR, I suspect its going to be sometime before they persue the idea though.

    But still, the GCR might have a rival out there, just waiting to emerge...
     
  16. John Petley

    John Petley Well-Known Member

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    On the National Network, when the Tonbridge-Hastings line was electrified in 1986, the track was singled through Somerhill, Strawberry Hill, Wadhurst and Mountfield Tunnels to allow for wider trains to run on the line. I have travelled on this line many times since then, and you really don't notice these short single track sections - apart from (obviously) not passing any other trains. Considering four trains an hour run each way Somerhill tunnel (plue extra in the rush hour) , I wouldn't have thought that a short single-track "pinch point" north of Loughborough on a future double-track GCR would really be a major operational issue, and wouldn't really affect the "double track" experience. Thinking logically, at the point where the GCR will cross the MMR, most passengers' eyes (if they are looking out of the window at all) will probably be focussed on the tracks underneath rather than the lack of track to the side.

    To be honest, just to achieve the bridging of the gap - even with a single track - would be a major achievement for the GCR. I hope they succeed.
     

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