Saturday 29 October 2022

Saturday Variety

Transperth To The Airport

Trying to follow the brand new Perth "Airport" branch "on the ground" is a bit of a struggle as it is all very new. 

Once upon a time Bayswater had a cosy little railway and a sweet traditional country station ...
... seen in 1901 long, long before Transperth Metro was ever thought of!

The new line forms a junction with the "Midland" line at a more recent Bayswater edifice which, c/o Google maps and streetview, still seems an innocuous little station.
But such modesty would, surely, be inappropriate for a junction with the new branch and, now under construction, a second branch running north-ish to Ellenbrook.
Needless to say, Bayswater is getting a massive rebuild! And there's a video all about it.
A bit different eh?

Streetview shows the construction at an early stage ...
.... but it seems that the new line plunges into tunnel ...
... lower right, to cross the Swan River. Perth's Redcliffe road bridge is a bit bigger that Bristol's!
Despite the new railway, this massive bridge is being widened to take yet more road traffic! 
At Redcliffe, Streetview shows nothing but a dual carriageway cutting through scrubland!
These carriageways are being opened into a sausage shape with Redcliffe Station constructed in the sausage.
A more recent bit of Streetview shows the station under construction across a blasted heath!
Then it is back into tunnel again to reach the Airport Central station guarded stoically by the massive control tower.
The line then turns south to terminate in fresh air at High Wycombe.
There is an 14 minute video on line showing High Wycombe train station and its bus connections, but it is just what is says on the tin; three car trains ...
... and many buses at the substantial bus station.
It is worth noting the utterly obvious, namely that buses and trains are all operated under the same banner, Transperth; and they all share the same grey and green house colours.
There were also bendy buses!
What spoiled the overall impression a tad was the preponderance of windows obliterated by contravision. POOR.
It would be fair to say that, when the video was made, there wasn't a substantial number of passengers on either trains or.  buses. But it has only been running for a few weeks, so give it time.

The station is in a "brown field" ex industrial area, seen here under construction ...
... but all the bus routes that formerly served High Wycombe urban area have been diverted or extended to the new interchange from day one!

None of this "waiting until it is commercially viable" nonsense in High Wycombe!

More on fares and timetables to follow.

Bouquet & Brickbat for Beds
Correspondent Katie emailed fbb with effusive praise for Central Bedfordshire Council. She even suggested, generously, that the local authority deserved one of fbb's rarely awarded chocolate peanuts.

Why this unsolicited enthusiasm?

Central Bedfordshire had ensured that their electronic displays for soon to be Ex Stagecoach 72 and 73 were programmed with a comforting notices about the continuation of the routes under the reliable busmanship of Grant Palmer Ltd.

These screens were displayed well before this coming Monday's change ...
... and they gave the company phone number as well!

fbb was just arranging for a small-time local radio personality to award the chocolate peanut at a ceremony at the Grant Palmer Flitwick depot and was going on to invite the world's press and tv when Katie sent another picture

Central Bedfordshire has posted departure lists (no timetable, of course, that would be a silly idea!) at bus stops before the change happens; better, fbb concedes, than waiting until several days afterwards.

But just look at what is posted.
Not only are both services mixed up on the one list ... BUT ...

(How it should be done if you MUST have departure lists)
One table for all buses from Bedford to Sandy
One table for all buses to Potton
One table for all buses to Bigglswade

... BUT ,,, and a ghastly BUT ...
... BOTH DIRECTIONS appear on the same table.

Has anyone ever heard of anything so crackpot! To compound the stupidity here is how the notes are explained in small print below the departure list.
More crackpotter than crackpot!

Katie suggest withdrawing the chocolate peanut award; a policy with which fbb concurs. Maybe the old man will have to institute a "slimy mouldy peanut" award as an alternative in cases like this!

Tyneside Electrics
The North Eastern Railway was very keen on electrification, even as early as the 1900s. One later plan was to electrify the mainline from Newcastle to London. Where would we be today if this had happened early-ish in the 20th century?

One scheme which did happen was to electrify a freight branch from Trafalgar Yard at Manors down to the Quayside. It was a struggle for small steam locos and anything bigger ...
... wouldn't go round the sharp corners!

So the company commission two electric locos. Out in the open they would run from overhead wires ...
...and in the tunnels where there was no clearance for overhead wires, they would pick up power from a third rail. Later the bow collector was replaced with a pantograph.
They survived into BR days, latterly repainted into LNER green.
26500 is preserved at the Locomotion Museum, Shildon.
The Quayside line has long been closed and is mostly redeveloped with very few snippets left for the keen observer to find.
As blog readers will have noticed, model railway "manufacturers" are competing with each other to produce OO versions of all varieties of obscure locos. 

Rails of Sheffield have announced their production run (actually from Heljan in Demark) of various versions of 26500.

Ot looks a beautiful model ...
... at a beautiful price at ONLY ...

... yes, ONLY ...

Hurry, because, with a limited production run, they will all be gone before you can say N E R steeple cab bi-mode electric shunting locomotive.

Mind you, £220 doesn't seem too bad when compared with the ancient Triang "toy" steeple cab which some joker will sell you on Ebay for £129.50.

fbb thinks the original cost about £1 (probably 21/6).

 Next Variety blog : Sunday 30th Oct 

1 comment:

  1. Technically the North Eastern's plan was to electrify Newcastle to York where they met the Great Northern