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ShefStealth

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Everything posted by ShefStealth

  1. More than that, I'm not sure that they've really considered other businesses such as the Sky Call center or other office workers in the Works buildings too. I suppose it depends how they're going to do it, the order of events and the different stages of works progression that will dictate exactly how chaotic it'll get or if it will even get approval. They'd probably be better spurring left off the bottom of Parkway, building a ramp up to to link to the B6071/Burnard Street and widening it, at least in the shorter term to allow traffic to go behind the train station and drop back onto ring road. Basically make it a 3 way slip-road junction at the bottom of parkway to either go right onto Derek Dooley, Left up-ramp onto Burnard St or straight on and up-ramp to Arundel Gate and the City Centre. Rip out park square roundabout completely as it's gradually becoming more redundant anyway what with the grey-to-green scheme at Victoria Quays and the old Castle Market quarter. I have a feeling that the £1.5Bn is a rather conservative estimate considering the volume and scope of the works that are being suggested with major road and tram changes described.
  2. So according to the star article "£1.5bn plan is Sheffield's 'biggest ever'" here: https://www.thestar.co.uk/business/ps15bn-plan-sheffields-biggest-ever-2445918 The council have announced a project currently going to public consultation that plans to be doing work for the next 20 years around the area of the railway station. They want to close Park Square roundabout, moving Sheaf Street from in front of the train station to behind it, and move the Supertram tracks from behind the train station to in front of it... Also, re-landscaping and building a large pedestrian bridge to connect directly between Park Hill and Howard Street. They're wanting to remove the multi-story car park that's at the train station currently, move it waaay out to where PureGym is currently situated on the fork of Ring-road. There's talk of new offices, potentially built on stilt over Pond Street where the tram will run down from Fitzalan Square... The argument is that redevelopment is needed for HS2 (I can see that) They've not made any mention of development at the station itself - the needed electrification, or redevelopment of Granville Road so that they can widen access approaches for trains into the station by adding extra tracks and the relevant OLE gantries. They're expecting over a billion pounds of this investment to come from the private sector with the rest funded by Sheffield City Council, HS2, SYPTE, Transport for the North, Network Rail, the Department for Transport and Sheffield City Region budgets. There's constant talk on here about the need for new developments and investment in the city, they've now come up with this. Over to you...
  3. The only Cycle Lockers that I've actually seen are the ones at Ponds Forge. They're located in the car park near the steps. It's a little dark/shady though as it's under cover, but the lockers themselves look sturdy and seem to be covered by CCTV. You'll still need your regular bike lock in addition to a padlock for the locker itself.
  4. In some respects, it's actually better to log in using the '3rd party' logins to websites i.e use Google/Facebook/Twitter/Yahoo etc. - They all use 'Oauth2'/'OpenID Connect' to authenticate and authorize. You'll get the benefits of 2 Factor Authentication from the authorizing party (Google/Facebook/Twitter/Yahoo etc.) so long as you've enabled 2FA with them, and you'll get the added protection of tokenization - this benefits the website that you're interacting with (they don't have to keep a protected SQL database of login details secure - if they get broken into then they just have a hashed single use token) and you, as you'd have less passwords to have to remember. If you decide that you don't want a certain website/application to be authorized (if you allow authorization rather than just authentication) you can easily De-auth/delete from within your Oauth2/OpenID connect referrer. Any time that you log in using Oauth2/OpenID connect, you are also ensuring a minimum current encryption grade standard with TLS. If you choose to open accounts directly with any website and choose a username/password or email/password authorization, you'll need to check for the 'padlock' and dig into the security page to check the encryption level to see if it's really secure or not. Oauth2/OpenID Connect is pretty secure so long as it is implemented correctly.
  5. So you've got an engineer install for FTTP, but going for max speed FTTC installation? Surprised they haven't just put you on a FTTC path right now, as it's easier for their installers to not have to attend your place - and they can outsource those installs to 3rd parties such as Kelly's Communications
  6. On 17th January, you advised someone to use Ctrl and + to increase text size... If you've done this yourself within the browser, you may have increased the window too - use ctrl and 0 to bring the browser size back to default and see what happens.
  7. Does your machine actually boot into Windows at all then crash out to this randomly (I'm figuring Blue screen rebooting) or does it not even get to/past the splash screen? My suggestion in the first instance would be to turn off the option for reboot on error. Go here: http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows-vista/help-troubleshoot-the-blue-screen-of-death-by-preventing-automatic-reboot/ - and follow the instructions for 'Disable Automatic Reboot after Blue Screen Errors' - then if your machine blue-screens it won't automatically reboot. You then need to read the error code on the bluescreen and come back to us as to what the error code is so that we can see why Windows keeps crashing. If it is a hard drive/bad sector issue there may be ways around this to get Windows to at least boot - There's a backup copy of the Windows Bootloader kept in a separate area of the drive to mitigate disk faults in the boot sectors. This is one of the benefits of NTFS. A little more information on the problem would help once you've done some further testing if you can. Actually, Vista had a long development cycle because XP's primary support cycle was extended several times. This was done because XP was the first M$ OS that tried to unify the user experience of home and corporate users i.e getting Home users off of 16bit, bringing them up to NT standards. Prior to XP, corporate was expected to be on NT (pure 32bit) line from NT 3.5, 4, then Windows 2000. Home users were on 95 (which had 3 releases) 98 (Which had a Second Edition) or ME which was indeed the worst M$ OS due certain pseudo processing of 16bit alongside 32bit caused major instability. A lot of factors helped the perception that XP was just a better OS for everyone than whatever home OS's had gone before it, not least that the file system support natively became NTFS rather than FAT (either 16 or 32) XP was the first M$ OS to try to support the upgrade to 64bit computing, which again extended its useful life. Vista was the first M$ OS to actually properly support 64bit computing and upon release actually had a more secure default installation base than Windows 7 (certain features were paired back in 7 from Vista in order to improve the user experience, at the expense of security) Vista had a perception problem in that hardware requirements were a lot higher to run Vista well than what had come before it. A lot of this was because a)People don't like changes in their user interface, they don't like to have to learn new stuff if they're comfortable using whatever has gone before. and b)The user interface changes themselves required more graphics processing power/DirectX compatibility in hardware in order to perform. Manufacturers had signed contracts with Microsoft to ship Vista, but then tried to keep their prices down by constraining the actual hardware that was sold in the machines that they were shipping - again partly an issue of XPs long previous cycle. People had been waiting to upgrade but the manufacturers chose to clear a lot of the previous gen components that they had backed up in their warehouses. Vista had a fair few things running against its perception from the off because of this. It ran well if you gave it a decent hardware platform to perform on. The only negative was Vista's memory management wasn't as refined as 7's became - but 7 was built off Vista's code base anyway and wouldn't have become what it did without Vista. XP was also successful due to that corporate entities had a multitude of proprietary 'in house' software written for it which then made a lot of corporate reluctant to upgrade once XP was superseded. Even now, there are a lot of corp orates that feel the need to maintain instances of XP, even if it's sandboxed in a virtual machine in order to maintain certain business critical operations.
  8. And so we know what we're working with, I ask again - what is your laptop's native resolution (if you know it) and are you running at that native resolution?
  9. There's still some floating around in the channels if you know where to look. Seperately, Seagate are still advertising certain drives under the Samsung branding - check out http://samsunghdd.seagate.com/gb/en/ - they still do internal drives too. Separtely, someone else quoted Maxtor earlier in the thread, but they got bought out years ago too - also by Seagate. Just because Apple decide to use certain hardware from certain manufacturers doesn't mean that that hardware is good/great. I'd actually argue that Apple being primarily a hardware company for their profits intentionally builds in obsolesce in order to drive upgrades. Their phones being a prime example, with no option for an average user to replace a battery. They also try and differentiate themselves on their customer service offering, which is why they then try and justify their 'premium pricing' structures. I personally have had higher failure rates with Toshiba products (not just HDDs, primarily laptop hinges/cases etc. some failing so badly that they then break other components such as the screen) Toshiba as a company have been in trouble for a while, the news broke over the past 18 months of major accounting issues and problems in their nuclear power division. If they don't have good enough quality control procedures in nuclear power, it doesn't bode well for the rest of their product line.
  10. What's your laptop's resolution set at? Have you tried the little cog at the bottom right hand corner to downsample the res (labelled 'quality')? Usually Youtube will automatically display resolution on detection of connection speed and browser resolution, but there may be something funky such as a plugin or other setting that may be throwing this automatic process off.
  11. It all depends on the BIOS (Your machine will probably be prior to UEFI booting) - there will be a key that you can press straight after powering up but prior to booting that will allow you to access the machine's boot menu. From there, you can choose the relevant available booting option. USB may be available but you'll have to check this yourself. Google the model number of your machine with words 'boot menu' afterwards. Don't confuse this boot menu with the Microsoft Windows ( F8 ) boot menu which allows certain admin/repair options for windows - I'm talking about your actual PC's boot menu option. There's also the option of checking the BIOS yourself for relevant settings (You can change the boot order yourself from within the BIOS) but with no disrespect intended, it mightn't be wise for you to be poking around with the settings in your BIOS, as if you change any settings that you don't understand then you may render your machine unbootable until you're able to make the relevant reversions.
  12. WD's you have to spend a little more in order to get a decent drive. Their Black drives for workstations or Red drives for NAS or servers. Their Blue drives are OK at 2.5inch for Laptops but not great in 3.5inch for desktops. That said, I upgraded a Sky+ box with a 2TB blue a few months ago (old drive died), and with the large cache it's generally improved my Sky box. Whilst Samsung have been having issues in other areas (Batteries with Note 7, and washing machines... oh, and a corporate board that is having a few issues) their HDDs are still fairly quiet and reliable. Seagate are fairly decent still, but I personally don't trust Hitachi (Deathstars) or Toshiba anymore.
  13. All devices sold in the E.U are supposed to conform to E.U regulations that are deemed a 'safe' SAR level. SAR means Specific absorption rate, and it is purely a measure of how much energy the human body will absorb at a given distance from the device. All mobile phones will have different SAR values depending on model and manufacturer. They'll also have differing values depending on if certain features are enabled or disabled. For instance, if you have a smartphone with Wifi and Bluetooth enabled then this will put out a higher amount of EMR (Electro-Magnetic Radiation) than if you turn off Bluetooth and WiFi whilst making/receiving a phone call. I understand that the way that SAR is measured is on a 'dummy head' that is the same size as an average sized male's head over a set duration of time. They measure the 'standard operation' of the phone i.e 3G/4G enabled for smartphones. I believe that they have to have all other EMR device options enabled at the time of the testing too, to derive a maximum SAR value that is then quoted. I believe the standard is that mobile devices have to have a maximum SAR value of less than 5. Older non-smart devices typically had values up to about 2, a lot were less than 1. There have been arguments made that children having smaller skulls and less tissue density than adults means that quoted SAR ratings aren't valid for children's use of mobile devices. However, it is argued that it is not feasible for manufacturers to try to measure an absolute worst-case scenario (newborn's aren't liable to use mobile phones anyway) and parental caution should be exercised wherever appropriate. Ultimately I wouldn't worry too much about it. All electronic devices (not just mobile phones) give off some EMR, and the human body is being bombarded with signals from all angles at all times. TV and Radio have been giving us doses of RF for years. You can get too hooked up on a subject and become paranoid, but there's no point in turning off your WiFi and living in a Faraday cage
  14. There's two different types of single-write writable DVDs, DVD+R was originally intended for video and set-top box type of DVD recording and was originally more expensive than DVD-R discs which were primarily for Computers/Data. On top of that you've then got multiple-write DVD in the form of DVD+RW and DVD-RW, and lastly DVD-Ram. This last one was again more expensive than DVD-RW or DVD+RW and limited adoption with hardware manufacturers so wasn't widely deployed. Originally, the +/-/RAM were all competing standards and different manufacturers lined up behind the different standards until they started bringing out 'hybrid' drives that would write to +/- disks, some would write to all 3 standards, even though DVD-RAM disks originally had caddies. DVD+R and DVD-R single-layer discs are approximately 4.7GB in capacity, where as dual layer are approximately 8.5GB Blank Blu-Ray disks are I believe approximately 25GB for single-layer discs and 50GB for dual-layer discs. They're known as BD-R's. You can also get 'Rewritable' Blu-rays which are BD-RW's which are the 'older/original' style Blu-ray rewritables, or BD-RE which are the newer standard. If you have a Blu-ray rewriter that is BD-RE compatible, it should be able to write to all Blu-ray rewritable discs but if you've got a BD-RW writer then it'll probably only write to BD-RW rewritable discs and not BD-RE as the 'newer standard' Some of the main difference between Blu-Ray and DVD is because the laser light-length has a different numerical aperture which allows the light to refract at multiple different angles off the Blu-ray discs and allows the greater capacity. In writable media, this may actually be seen as a disadvantage, as if you get any portion of the disc that becomes unreadable due to getting scratched (Though Blu-Rays are supposed to have better coatings than DVDs to try to negate some of the effects of disc scratches) you're liable to lose a much greater portion of data due to the massively multiplied density. Prices of USB flash media have plummeted in recent years, and have proven to be a magnitude more durable than optical discs for backup purposes. USB3 backup and restore should prove to be a lot faster than optical disc backup/restore and if you have this option, is probably the safer way forward. Separately, all writable optical media over time is more liable to become unreadable. There are many different reasons for this, including disc rot and laser rot. The better the disc is manufactured, the less likely you are to suffer from this, but nothing is 100% certain. I've experienced certain (5+ years) writable discs fall apart where others that are older have held up okay. There are no guarantees. Hard drives and solid-state media (USB flash etc.) are probably a safer bet.
  15. BT Openreach's price list for WLR is available online: https://www.openreach.co.uk/orpg/home/products/pricing/loadProductPrices.do?data=63iUyYbpRV%2Fdw36mtxo4r1nqs1m6OcKz301sgolk8P2FdiaKKPEfrCsJCb3sZkzJ - look at Analogue Lines Line rental prices (1.1.2) and you'll see that the line rental cost per year excluding VAT is £86.72 - include VAT and that becomes £104.06 per year - break that to monthly and that's approximately £8.67. This is the cost charged to all telco's (yes, even Plusnet and BT Retail) by BT Openreach on behalf of BT Wholesale (The clue is in the name of the product) - you'll notice that even though Plusnet charge less than BT, they'll never break this lower price threshold as this is the 'cost' incurred to Plusnet from Openreach/Wholesale. Plusnet and BT Retail are treated the same in respect to being a customer facing devision of BT. They are however treated differently for two reasons. When BT bought Plusnet back in 2006, they realised that Plusnet had a large percentage of technically literate users on the platform. It was at that point still considered a 'small player' in the market place (Tier 3, less than 250,000 xDSL) BT Retail as an ISP was at that time and is classed as Tier 1 (1Mil+ xDSL) Although Plusnet is operated 'as a separate company' within the BT group, they still feed in to BT Groups' share price. They are treated as a test-bed platform for a lot of the rollout and tech, and partially because of this then Plusnet is allowed to command a cheaper retail pricing structure, whilst allowing them to utilise hardware available to other BT Retail customers (routers/TV equipment etc.) I can't comment more on Plusnet's traditional relationship with BT prior to their take-over, and some of the other reasons why BT bought Plusnet because I believe I may still be restricted under an NDA. Some of the info is already in the public domain however, such as that BT wanted Plusnet's knowledge and expertise on traffic management at the time, but one of the other main reasons might still not be widely known, and was specifically stated to staff not to disclose. As I said before, all the telco's have to utilise BT WLR for the phone line which has a set price list and set products for calls within the overall product. This is why all the telco's only offer 'standard line rental' with no inclusive calls, evening and weekends or anytime call packages, partly because these are the main products offered under WLR and are easiest for telco's to allow customers to compare and compete but also because of 'last mile'/peering costs. There will always be some exchanges that the telco's do not have equipment (LLU) that would allow them to route a VoIP phonecall back to analogue PSTN and for this they will utilise BT's network. The telco in question, such as Sky, may utilise some of their own software/hardware in order to route phone calls and monitor for billing, or using other features such as 1471 etc. I know until last year at least, if you call 17070 from a standard BT line, you'll get a BT LDU response but if you call it from a Sky Talk phone line, you'll get Sky's software response and the call won't give a full hardware LDU feedback. I don't think this has changed, but it partially demonstrates one of the few differentials between the telco's and how they can afford to be marginally cheaper. In the main though, they all still rely on Openreach and BTw, even just for PSTN peering and this won't change any time soon.
  16. See this is where I think Ofcom is screwing up a little because a lot of products and services are still going to be BT Wholesale's domain. BT Openreach was actually a division spun out of BT Wholesale in 2005/2006 to try and appease the regulators and bring forward LLU from other network providers. It was at this time that BT Wholesale/Openreach upgraded everyone to MaxDSL (up to 8mbit line rate adaptive ADSL v1) in order to try and compete better and differentiate against the LLU providers. Every provider of phone products (with the exception of Virgin Media and Kcom in Hull) operate from BT's WLR. As an example, if you pay Sky for your phone bill (Sky Talk), you've actually got a BT WLR ('Wholesale Line Rental') line that Openreach administrate from a physical point of view, but BT Wholesale administrate from a call routing/pricing standpoint. BT Wholesale set the price of the actual line itself, factoring in how much it costs to power each line, the average cost of Openreach engineers maintaining a line over an average 12 month period, and the cost of routing calls over and between networks. If working on a broadband analogy but for PSTN, it works kind of like a hybrid between the old Datastream/IPstream of old for ADSL on BTs network, and LLU. The WLR is akin to BTs old stream products i.e 'this portion of the data has to run across our network' and the LLU is where the other telco's come in to play. Since BT rolled out 21CN at their exchanges, calls are routed VoIP which brings costs down. They're converted back to analogue PSTN at exchange level. Because of this VoIP routing, the other telco providers can part-route calls over their transits if so wished, again to bring down costs and to balance loads. BT Wholesale then just charges back to the relevant telco when costs are incurred additional to the inclusive call allowance tier that is subscribed to. ISPs/Telco's will still have to maintain contracts with BT Wholesale even if Openreach is legally spun-off as a seperate entity from BT Group. It's basically a fudge. At the moment, all of BTs divisions can cover each other in the event of profit or loss. There's been massive losses previously in BT Global Services division, but this unit was kept afloat by the rest of the BT group's performance as a whole. This isn't going to happen anymore going forward if Openreach is full unravelled - it's purely going to be merited o its own performance terms in the markets. This is partly why BT Group's share holding is going down today even though the physical assets they own will be the same after the company is initially split. BT would still own Openreach initially after a split (owning 100% of the shares) but have to report it as a seperate entity/comany - shares would then be gradually sold in Openreach, initial profits going back to BT group to allow the new company to purchase the company assets outright.
  17. Reported less than an hour ago on the BBC news website - thought it would probably be of interest here seen as a fair percentage of threads end up being about Broadband/ISP issues. BT ordered to legally split from Openreach by Ofcom - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-38141510
  18. Caller Display on BT isn't free - the fact that you may be getting it free means that they did you a deal, either at the time that you signed up or as a retention. I was annoyed with BT myself when I found out that they were offering new customers £10 per month for Infinity 1 yet the month before this offer, they'd put my bill up to £30 for my infinity 1 (just for the broadband, not including line rental). When I called them on this and asked them to review my account with a view to matching or getting somewhat closer to the offer they were unwilling to do this citing brand new customers only. I then asked them how long they expected long time/loyal customers to subsidise new customers, especially as I'd been paying 'over the odds' for a while as standard price was meant to be £24 and I'd been paying more than that, and hadn't received any of the welcome offers (such as MnS or Sainsburys vouchers etc. - I'd definitely been a profitable customer) the customer service's rep stated that all he could do was put the bill down to match parity with standard full-price Infinity 1 (£23.99 PCM, again just for the broadband) and tying me up with another 12 month contract. - I voted with my feet and moved to Sky Fibre Max at half the price (£15 PCM for the first year, £25 PCM there after) - So far, I'm also getting better customer services from sky too, the line rental is cheaper at £17.40 PCM vs BT's £18.99 PCM and Sky's line rental includes free Caller ID/Display where BT usually charge for this as an additional extra per month. All ISPs that offer fibre migration should actually be penalised by Ofcom for not honouring the Wholesale contracts. BT Openreach charge ISPs q one-off fee of about £10 for a fibre migration, and then it's a monthly contract. All ISPs that are doing inbound fibre migration still currently tie the customer in to a new 12 month term, even though technically they could easily do a monthly rolling contract. A lot of ISPs also charge the full fibre activation fee too, (about £50 usually) where by a migration isn't a line activation, no engineer needs to attend the street cabinets or re-jumper pairs so this charge is actually pretty much extortionate.
  19. Numerous rumours regarding this one, including DDA compliance i.e they've not got any lifts and just one escalator that only goes up. Another perhaps more likely rumour is building underpinning/subsidence. I say that's possibly more likely, as I know that other buildings along that side of Fargate have had building works done on them over the past 25 years or so, which kind of ties in to the 'fargate tunnels' rumours too perhaps.
  20. Hallam Uni is located over different sites (Collegiate Crescent and central campuses) but although that means it has been of some marginal benefit to Ecclesall Road over the years for potential footfall, it has caused other issues to be spread across multiple sites such as transport capacity. The fact that Collegiate Crescent campus is situated along Ecclesall Road means that this particular bus corridor is hard fought for capacity between Stagecoach and First which is of benefit for frequency of services, yet still at peak times it is bottle necked and busy. Look to Manchester and several of their Universities and national collages are located in fairly close proximity to one another along Oxford Road/Withington Road. That in turn means that bus route is again majorly busy which is both a benefit and a drawback. In academia it was released a while ago that if you can put all the facilities in close proximity to each other inside one campus then it brings a lot of efficiency. This works for other businesses and industries too and is why the likes of Silicon Valley work so well.
  21. Just to counter some of those points, surely direct daily/weekly passenger cash income is preferable to subsidised travel from SYPTE that the transport companies have to wait for reimbursement for? Weekly tickets are in some ways more profitable for the bus companies and the transport executive. If you have a guaranteed amount of money coming in each week rather than sporadic single fares then the system should work more efficiently. Indeed, some of the arguments about bringing in smartcards as opposed to having to print tickets and issue wallets/sleeves bringing ticket issuing expenditure down will of course also apply to newer child weekly/monthly tickets too. In fact, weren't under 16s originally guinea pigs of the smartcard rollout along with the disability/senior passes? (i.e lets speed up boarding by getting rid of people fumbling for change) Also, other arguments behind issuing saver/passes will no doubt also give the transport companies other 'stealth' profits by reducing expenditures - such as the fact that dwell time at stops should reduce by not having to handle so much cash/give change as boarding time should be sped up. This fact also would feed into their reduced expenditure on fuel as engines idling at stops will be reduced in timeframe per journey. I imagine that buses are like flights in that respect i.e that they're more profitable when they're actually moving rather than stationary. Also, if subsidisation is now becoming a major issue - what then is happening about the 'bright buses'? Surely if kids/parents are being expected to pay more for their academic commute which is a legally mandated and thus obligated journey then I would argue that those buses do not provide either good value for money nor will they conform to future environmental legislation regarding emissions which in turn not only will effect the quality of health of its staff and patrons, but of the general populous. The fact that there are bus services that are exclusive in their nature, and that they just so happen to be 'old stock' style buses that the general public would probably not wish to travel on, then why should these be inflected on school kids who are gradually being expected to pay near to the equivalent of an adult fare? Especially as these buses don't appear to have any valid 'saver' style tickets apart from SYPTE tickets. These bright buses aren't particularly safe, being larger and heavier than modern equivalents, and having smaller doors. Neither do they conform to DDA, having steps at all exits. Lastly - isn't this all just a mechanism to try and get people to buy weekly saver style tickets that are then issued on smartcards. The data then is collected on journeys made, where people usually touch on so that the bus companies have more data about demographics and where to make future cuts/increase frequencies to be more profitable?
  22. Why are more pedestrian crossings needed on western bank when western bank itself is built as an elevated flyover that pedestrians can walk under?
  23. Not really - it was mainly a cost-cutting and profit exercise - they wanted to cut the number of stations, creating more of a 'hub and spoke' system with roads complimenting railways so Beeching designed the cuts mainly as a 'kill the branches' type of exercise, but that the trunks could be slower so long as they were cheaper and easier to maintain. Woodhead also supported Coal, and that went against certain members of government who were pushing an oil agenda. Political mentality has changed over the course of time. Where as now it is deemed that it is of more benefit to link major metropolitan areas more quickly with more capacity and less environmental emissions (Think the arguments for HS2 etc.) back then it was argued Hope Valley had less ongoing maintenance costs i.e no electrification that may need changing/upgrading - they'd already been stung by Woodhead with this as standards changed. It was also partly due to demographics as it was considered Grindleford, Hathersage, Hope, Edale are now and were then all more affluent areas than the more industrial areas such as Deepcar, Penistone etc. Also Hope Valley was less inclined to be closed due to to inclement weather being a 'valley' line rather than running at higher altitudes over hills. The cuts were a balancing act designed to give maximum impact whilst causing the least protest, with whatever protest that would be made done by that of lower classes that it was thought had less power and influence. The mentality of the 60s closures weren't just to 'protect the network' but also to improve the business case for roads and motorways i.e Beeching reported to his boss Earnest Marples who was minister for transport. Marples was the guy behind roads and motorways, and was the person who passed legislation that made railway closure easier. There have been links made between Marples and Oil shareholdings and it is telling that North Sea Oil was coming up in the 50s (The Netherlands had been successful i.e Royal Dutch Petroleum which merged with our own Shell to become Royal Dutch Shell) The UK Continental Shelf act came into force in 1964 to exploit North Sea oil and gave rise to BP. British Railways which up until the 60s had survived on Coal, Water and Steel was seen as old slow technology with Diesel and Petrol being the future. Britain was looking at America and how their Oil rush had made their country more prosperous. The long term view was always to close Sheffield Victoria as after the closure of the Great Central, routes to London were only served from Sheffield via Midland station on the Midland Mainline. The argument to close Great Central and keep Midland Mainline was akin to the closure of Woodhead and keep Hope Valley i.e it's slower so it serves the mentality of modal shift - if you can get somewhere quicker by car on rural roads or motorways then why would you stick with the train? Get people off the trains and into cars and it's ultimately more profitable for the government which can over-time argue to gradually get rid of more railways and ultimately save more expenditure costs. Government mentality was that it's easier to maintain a road and offload the expenses of the vehicles that run on it to the consumer, whilst also getting income from those consumers in the form of taxes for the use of the roads and taxes that would be put on the fuels. Vehicle maintenance is then also profitable as mechanics open up shops that then have to pay business rates. Roads were also seen to be safer and more flexible than rail. The mentality changed somewhat because of the 1973 Oil Crisis which effectively halted the future Beeching cuts projects (there was more than 1 report by Beeching) but by then, the railways would have fundamentally changed and the damage done.
  24. Under her leadership, there was a strategic review of the railways prior to the formal proposal of British Rail being privatized. As an example of part of this, Michael Portillo was given the job of reviewing the Settle to Carlisle line which was planned to be mothballed to save costs of maintenance renewal and ongoing running. The government wanted to make the sale of assets as attractive as possible, and BR was ultimately fragmented to become Railtrack (Now Network Rail) and various other companies for rolling stock leasing and franchises for line operations of both passenger and freight. Going back to the Settle to Carlisle, it was saved partly because the line featured on Blue Peter and the nation got behind a campaign to keep it due to its scenic nature. The fate of the line was in Portillo's hands and he ultimately chose to save it, which is one of the few things that he did that has given him a legacy - he's made countless 'Great British Railway Journeys' and their spin-offs since. It is of note that the Woodhead line (electrified to 1500v DC between Sheffield and Manchester) was closed to passengers a while after the main slew of 60s Beeching cuts, and big chunks of those rails were ripped out in the mid 80s, fitting in with the Thatcher strategic rail review. It was argued that a lack of passenger traffic on the line since the 70s (partly because of Beeching) and the need for upgrade of the standard of electrification alongside other track and tunnel maintenance meant that the line didn't achieve a decent score in any cost-benefit analysis at the time. Others argued that because the infrastructure was there, upgrade of the electrification would have made better sense, and the route was quicker and more direct between the two cities, although more likely to be closed at times of inclement weather due to the steep sides of certain cuttings and the general nature of the topography.
  25. You've probably already sorted this now, but I'd check with Central Glass (they're now owned by Sheffield Window Centre). They'll be able to advise on if you can use the glass change to improve your energy efficiency by putting in better spacer bars and the like. If you're spending the money anyway, you may as well see it as an investment to save more cash longer term.
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