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1978

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  1. The original contract for the work was to run until September 2023 with full commissioning by that date, landscaping and tidying up to follow. That date has been pushed back to November 2023. The second track through Dore station should be in place by August 2022 but will only be used by engineering trains until platforms have been completed and the new Dore loop fully connected in mid 2023. During the blockades stopping services are planned to run from Piccadilly to Edale with mini bus transfer to Hope to link with coach from Chinley into Sheffield. A suggestion of single track shuttle into Sheffield past the works is unlikely to happen as that would potentially delay the work on safety grounds. Extending from Edale to Hope might be possible and would eliminate the need for mini-buses. The indicative timetable from December 2022 that was issued a few months ago for the Sheffield - Manchester route won't be possible for the stopping service. It might be possible to improve one or two services in 2023 but more likely a fuller recast of services may come from May 2024.
  2. I'll avoid entering this political tussle left/right, but would just mention that the problem with railways is capacity to absorb that significantly large volume of passenger or freight traffic from the roads at any time in the foreseeable future, be they electric trains or not. The volumes are huge. HS2 was supposed to increase capacity by being an almost totally separate system. As now planned we'll get minimal extra capacity from East Midlands to Sheffield. Our railway lines used to be lined with rail connected factories and almost every station had a goods yard. Most passenger trains carried parcels and larger items. More than half the original stations have long gone. We've built massive warehouses in open country away from railways. We've built large housing estates with gardens and meandering streets on the outskirts of all our towns, mostly well away from railways. When factories or housing are near a railway any stops by slow passenger trains, or shunting wagons into a siding, delays fast trains. Cars will remain essential for the start and finish of many journeys, as will delivery vans and HGVs. Maybe what we really needed was to plan SS1, the slower speed freight dedicated railway.
  3. We seem to be flying away from HS2. However it wasn't helpful to the east leg's cause that Sheffield promoted a no hope route and rubbished the Meadowhall option. I seem to recall the Sheffield Chamber of Commerce supporting those views. We won't know for certain what will actually get built for years yet, whatever is announced now, but the suspicion seems to be that part of HS2 east will be built south out of Leeds and also north up to the East Midlands leaving a big gap very noticeably north and south of Sheffield!
  4. Wishful thinking that the Stocksbridge line is close to reopening when the feasibility study can hardly have been started yet.
  5. Waverley will be planned with some park and ride capacity. An hourly service wouldn't be enough to attract most users, particularly with cars, to use it. Compare with stations at Chapeltown and Dore. Chapeltown has 2 trains an hour to Sheffield, one from Leeds and one from Huddersfield. Dore has an hourly service to Sheffield from Manchester, with additional hourly morning services to and evening services from Manchester. Chapeltown's last assessed passenger numbers were higher than for Dore and part of that must be attributable to the more frequent service. Waverley's likely opening hourly service would be on the Lincoln line, a less attractive destination for most users than either Leeds or Manchester. Consequently it would be likely to attract similar passenger number to Darnall -which is not very many. Of course an extra hourly service to Chesterfield on a new route from Sheffield via Barrow Hill might permit 2 stops per hour at Waverley. That would put up the cost a lot, and would run into pathing issues.
  6. Commuting time trains are still fairly quiet, most still less than 50% of pre-Covid loadings. That will vary if one or more of the operators has a problem. Generally speaking go for the normally 6 coach TPE trains for speed, space and punctuality. Avoid East Midlands on their Liverpool-Norwich route. They have a shortage of carriages so when it should be a 4 car train it's often only 2. They're more often late and tend to cost more. Take an extra 20-25 minutes and the Northern stopping service is cheaper and they're operating longer and better carriages than the old Pacers of recent memory. Some days they may be 3 car new Class 195s.
  7. Don't know if anyone else has noticed but QPark seem to have withdrawn the 30 minutes free parking at Sheffield station. Consequently on Saturday morning the small short term car park was full and the drop off zone was totally blocked with parked cars.
  8. Engineered as a toll road (turnpike) by Thomas Telford construction was financed by the Dukes of Norfolk and Devonshire and opened in 1821. It was never a commercial success and was lightly used. The Snake Inn sign came from the Arms of the 6th Duke of Devonshire which depicted a serpent.
  9. The likely announcement will be spun as good news - electrifying the MML to Sheffield by 2030 (meaning 2035, then 2040) and pausing HS2 east until reassessment when Covid outcomes are clearer. Can kicked down the road until next Parliament (filed with projects like postponed Heathrow 3rd runway).
  10. Over 3 years since anyone last posted here until today. Examination of the Planning details show Network Rail engaging with Sheffield Planning as long ago as 2005. They'd been doing their internal planning for years before that. The entire business case would be different if started today, post Covid. Manchester bound commuter trains are no longer rammed thanks to TPE providing 6 coaches and so many now working from home. Traffic to ManchseterAirport has all but ceased and that link has been withdrawn, probably permanently. East Midlands are still struggling with old 158 andc 156 units, supposedly 4 car but often short formed with 2 - or cancelled thanks to a variety of stock and crew shortages, plus RMT industrial action. Northern's Pacers have gone and many trains are now new 195s, often 3 car, and 150s, sometimes 4 car - especially Saturdays and Sundays. Leisure users are returning far better than commuters. The original business case spoke of freight from the Hope Valley cement works and paid scant attention to aggregates from the Buxton area quarries. Aggregate traffic has grown enormously since this scheme was planned and is now the bigger user of freight paths . The scheme was originally formulated to provide 4 fast passenger paths per hour between Sheffield and Manchester, reduced to 3 before the public inquiry in 2016. Realistically it has to be questioned if that is still necessary. Two reliable fast services an hour with at least 4 carriages would currently suffice. Make them all 6 cars and it should cope for several years. Make the stoppers 4 car - and possibly extend the New Mills service limited stop from there to provide reserve capacity when the fasts fail for whatever reason! (Sending the Cleethorpes - Airport train to Liverpool instead, as is being planned, is unlikely to improve punctuaility.) That would leave more room for the aggregate trains with plenty of passenger capacity on a variety of services. Currently Northern fares undercut the other two by big margins at many times and on most days. On 195 and refurbished 150 trains the extra 20 minutes end to end is no hardship for very many.
  11. Much as I'd love HS2 to come to Sheffield, the logic of taking it to Manchester, then through Bradford and Leeds for York and the North East makes a lot of sense, not least because they already want a fast line across/through the Pennines on that route anyway. Sheffield lost out in the first wave of railway building and ended with a spur from Rotherham to the Wicker in 1840, having to wait until 1870 for the current tracks from Chesterfield to Midland. We're in dangerof losing out again. However, we may be better off pushing a lot harder for MML electrification as it should be possible to get that completed a lot more quickly. Done in conjuction with electification for Cross-Country routes from York through Sheffield and Derby to Birmingham gives other options, possibly electrified to Bristol. Unfortunately getting out of Sheffield to the north and east is a major challenge due to already congested tracks. Given the position of roads, rivers, the canal, buildings, viaducts and cuttings it won't be easy or cheap to resolve that. Only someone from the North West would suggest the best way from Sheffield to York is via both Doncaster and Leeds, rather than developing the middle and quicker way that exists via Moorthorpe, avoiding them both and still used as a diversion. However we still need good electrified connections to both Doncaster and Leeds.
  12. Sadly, even fewer will understand what this is all about than did about Brexit. Voting against a "strong leader" is rather simplistic. Equally a "more democratic model" is vague. This referendum seems to be more a vote of confidence in Julie Dore (who's taken it that way) and her crew as a city wide clamour to change a system few understand.
  13. See article in Yorkshire Post; https://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/politics/sheffield-city-council-leader-julie-dore-to-step-down-after-nine-years-1-10196610
  14. CMS are also leaving the Victoria Quays area, CMS has over 70 offices located across over 40 countries. The company is set to reaffirm its future in Sheffield, relocating from its current base at Victoria Quays and preserving the firm’s presence as a major employer in the city. CMS is to take 47,500 sq ft of premium Grade A office space within the same landmark building that is also the new home to HSBC. The move further strengthens the emergence of Heart of the City II as a new financial and professional services district for the Sheffield City Region. CMS will occupy the 26,000 sq ft that makes up 1 Charter Square, plus an additional 21,500 sq ft of adjoining space. The new office will be entirely self-contained and separate to HSBC, with a bespoke entrance, reception and signage facing onto Wellington Street and connecting to the impressive public realm of Charter Square.
  15. In partial defence of the Fox House, it's not easy getting staff to cover awkward hours as transport is difficult unless they have access to a car. Many are students without relyingb on infrequent buses and lifts. Demand is hard to predict. Saturday was shrouded in freezing fog and quiet, but Sunday was glorious sunshine and very busy around there .
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