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Great Central Railway General Matters

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by Reading General, Nov 11, 2017.

  1. 35B

    35B Nat Pres stalwart

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    The catch-22 is that the unification project has to see GCR(S) linked to the network for there to be an 18 mile railway. If work stops at the MML connection point - and I would also be outraged by that - the failure will be to move forward with the full realisation of the project, even though much of the enablement will have happened.
     
  2. ruddingtonrsh56

    ruddingtonrsh56 Member

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    Before the FR and WHR linked up was there a similar expectation that they would become one linked up 40 mile railway running as one, rather than the current arrangement of two sharing the one terminus? I remember myself being a bit surprised when it turned out that was going to be the main arrangement.

    Not that this justifies or excuses anything going on the GCR that suggests they might be more likely to adopt a similar arrangement. I was just curious as the FR/WHR is the only example we have of this kind of thing happening before in preservation. OR at least the only one I can think of
     
  3. J Rob't Harrison

    J Rob't Harrison New Member

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    That's the awkward bit I'm dealing with. I don't want to stop donating to the project and I think that it is tremendously exciting to see the civil engineering going on in Loughborough, but once all that is built and paid for the GCR has it's mainline connection so there's nothing really to stop Mr Gough (assuming he's still in the big chair at that time) calling a halt to proceedings there, with the heavy lifting done but the job decidedly only half-finished.

    ~Edit~ replying to 35B.
     
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  4. 35B

    35B Nat Pres stalwart

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    I think there has always been a strong possibility of two operations meeting halfway, certainly for a while. Merging two organisations is not easy, and growth to a single greater GCR challenging.
     
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  5. ruddingtonrsh56

    ruddingtonrsh56 Member

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    That may be true, but if it is, it hasn't exactly been publicized as the intended outcome
     
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  6. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Well-Known Member

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    Well all the publicity talks of an 18 mile railway. The DCRT, EMRT, GCR and GCR(N) have stated in their documentation/websites etc that they are building an 18 mile railway.....even in the offending Main Line article, Mr Gregory says that he shares that long term objective. He is merely pointing out the obvious present problems with operations and organisation with the GCR(N). I'm sure there are lots of discussions going on about how to help and improve the situation.....but lets get the bridges and embankments built......then the trains will be able to run North and onto the MML...it is Both not an either/or.
    Meanwhile can we keep this thread for the rest of GCR matters as we do have the dedicated "Gap" thread.

    I saw that there have been alterations to the long coach siding to the South of Rothley, are they extending it to join at its North end by the platform rather than the old point on the single track to the South?
     
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  7. Steve

    Steve Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    You may have had expectations of the WHR & FR linking up in this way but there is a fundamental problem of loading gauge to consider. The FR loading gauge is significantly smaller than the WHR and the only way through operations could be considered would be to use FR gauge stock. That would have meant no South African stock (locos and wagons) and a need to build new locos to FR gauge to supplement the existing FR stock.
     
  8. Bluenosejohn

    Bluenosejohn New Member

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    The Welsh Highland Railway was rebuilt north to south in sections from Caernarfon to Portmadog and was always going to be run as a separate line to that of Portmadog to Blaenau Ffestiniog. The opening was in stages and the 3 Garratts' from South Africa were in place before running started on the first section from Caernarfon to Dinas.
     
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  9. J Rob't Harrison

    J Rob't Harrison New Member

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    Re: doubling from Rothley to Leicester North, what's the work involved there, other than obviously laying another set of rails? Does the existing line follow the up / down formation or is it laid down the centre of the trackbed?
     
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  10. Johann Marsbar

    Johann Marsbar Member

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    I think it's mainly on the former down line alignment though it may wander onto the course of the up line in a couple of places and Google Earth seems to confirm that. It doesn't appear to be laid "down the middle" as hopefully, the possibillity of redoubling was considered in the extension planning. There might be something in old editions of Main Line that would confirm that.
    I know I've looked out of the train window looking at that myself in the past, but it's not a journey I've done much in the last year, for obvious reasons!
     
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  11. mogulb

    mogulb New Member

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    The answer given last time this question was asked was that any slewing needed could be carried with a tamper, track was laid with doubling in mind.
     
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  12. tor-cyan

    tor-cyan Well-Known Member

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    re laying the track is a relatively easy job in the scheme of things, although sourcing the components may not be so easy! The real sticking point will be the signaling, the redesigning and re building of the locking room of Rothley box will be a major undertaking and that's before you get into building a new box at Birstall and installing and commissioning the physical signals. I know that some forward planning and preliminary work has been undertaken but this would be a major undertaking for the S&T dept.
    there are a couple of posters on here who work for S&T who will be able to give chapter and verse on the work required.

    Cheers
    Colin
     
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  13. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Well-Known Member

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    Well the S & T dept have got a lot of experience as they have done all the signalling for Loughborough and Swithland - which are more complex. Certainly when the single track was laid to Leicester North provision was made for it to be doubled as the new road bridge for the Leicester ring road was made for double track - indeed it was that road which made it imperative for the track to be laid back to L North.
     
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  14. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Well-Known Member

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    I was able to take a photograph over the parapet at Loughborough engine shed and there has been a couple of changes. The 9F (92214)appears to have some work being done on its superheater tubes/header? The boiler for 70013 Oliver Cromwell is still here, with the boiler from the 8F (48624) behind. The tender frame from Thornbury Castle (7027) has its front 2 feet being replaced and the boiler for the Black 5 (45491) is having its cladding made and fitted. DSC00397.JPG
     
  15. Monkey Magic

    Monkey Magic Part of the furniture

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    There is a very long wikipedia entry on the FR/WHR affair. I suspect that had the internet been around at its height it would have been as bloody as the WSR.

    As I recall and others with more FR knowledge can correct me, there were a number of plans mooted. There was the site of a supermarket in Port (Leo's) which was at one point considered to be a new Portmadog New, however, the site was sold to someone else and redeveloped. Developing Harbour was the alternative plan.

    At the time of the trackbed purchase there were a lot of concerns that the WHR would: be a financial drain on the FR, would take away volunteers, would take away visitors and would be a millstone again around the neck of the FR. This I think is why they are set up as separate entities (so that if the WHR goes under the FR is protected - but I might be wrong). There was a lot of opposition not just from the WHHR but also within the FR.

    The locos including the diesels were onsite I think before work even started on restoring the WHR trackbed. I think the diesels were the first things to be worked on.

    My sense is the order that things went in was: sort out the relationship with the WHR, (and the upset with the WHHR), get the trackbed + permissions, then the locos arrived at the same time as the trackbed was being built from the north.
     
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  16. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Well-Known Member

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    92214 was in light steam today so the repairs to the superheater must have been completed. The two class 2's were in front of the shed as well today.
     
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  17. meeee

    meeee Member

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    The arrangement at Porthmadog is more a realisation of the practicalities of running a 40 mile long preserved railway. Most of the passengers aren't there to do the whole thing in one day. So it makes little sense to introduce a load operational difficulties to enable that. Unless you run short train you'll need to swap engines at Porthmadog anyway as the gradient is twice as steep on the WHR, and the WHR locos don't fit up the FR.

    Much better to offer it as two separate products and take advantage of the larger loading gauge to provide more comfortable rolling stock.

    The arrangement isn't entriely comparable to the Great Central though. As it is one company operating two different routes that just happen to join up. This is somewhat less complicated than two companies operating different or even the same routes over the same railway.

    Tim
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2021
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  18. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Well-Known Member

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    Good news! ...from the GCR website
    Passenger trains return – from 17th April 2021
    Weekend passenger trains are due to return to the Great Central Railway from Saturday 17th April 2021, as national coronavirus restrictions are relaxed!

    Details are currently being finalised, but expect a steam-hauled service and a return of our beautifully restored compartment coaches to provide a comfortable journey in private compartments, with social distancing precautions in place.

    We're really looking forward to welcoming you back to the railway soon!

    More details will be published here in the coming days.
     
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  19. Legrandanglais

    Legrandanglais Member

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    The status of the ORR Improvement Notice with Compliance date of 28 February - was Open, is now classed as Compiled.
    ORR Notice: Great Central Railway (Nottingham) Limited I/ SJS/20201023/GCRN/01
    This means that the work on the record systems, inspections and documentation has been completed to ORR requirements.
    I understand that there will be ongoing work to rectify defects found and contractors are working.
    The recent closure of the A60 has been lifted - it is thought that some ballast had fallen and damaged a passing car - but maybe a vandal bombing vehicles? The bridge structure is believed to be relatively sound for its age but requiring repair work in the future (and Lifting as part of the Gap Scheme).
    We must however await the official confirmation from EMRT and GCR(N) that this is the actual case (it may be more complicated than this brief resume).
    We all hope the resumption of the Gypsum Trains and GCR(N) Trains can recommence in the near future, when allowed.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2021
  20. ruddingtonrsh56

    ruddingtonrsh56 Member

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    Communication has been sent out to GCRN Volunteers advising of next steps and prospective dates for reopening, but as the email stated the contents were not to be shared with non GCRN volunteers, I am not at liberty to discuss them. Before you shout at me for saying "I know what's going on but can't tell you", I hope this gives encouragement that progress is being made, and, in keeping with every other heritage railway in the country currently reviewing their options following the latest government advice, if one were to keep an eye on social media channels and the like, at some point an update to the public should be forthcoming :)
     

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