History UsefulNotes / NationalRail

8th Aug '17 9:20:46 AM Voodoo
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British Railways operated a [[SchizoTech collection of rolling stock]] from Victorian-era six-wheelers and locomotives still eking out an existance on branch lines to the top-link express locomotives of the big four and their predecessors, their own advanced designs and the harbingers of modernisation such as the electric blue and bespeedwhiskered Deltic prototype and GWR railcars. The late '50s to early '60s were probably the golden age of [[RailEnthusiast trainspotting]] as a result.

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British Railways operated a [[SchizoTech collection of rolling stock]] from Victorian-era six-wheelers and locomotives still eking out an existance on branch lines lines[[note]]At least partially due to the disruption of the Second World War, which probably kept many older designs that would otherwise have been scrapped around for at least a decade past their intended replacement dates[[/note]] to the top-link express locomotives of the big four and their predecessors, their own advanced designs and the harbingers of modernisation such as the electric blue and bespeedwhiskered Deltic prototype and GWR railcars. The late '50s to early '60s were probably the golden age of [[RailEnthusiast trainspotting]] as a result.
3rd Aug '17 2:43:59 PM Voodoo
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Linked to all of this is the very active 'heritage' railway scene in the UK, which got started in the 1960s as BR removed steam from the main line and Beeching was removing lines from the passenger maps. A good number of old locomotives were saved from scrapping by a Barry Island owner who decided it made more economic sense to sell them to the preservation movement than cut them up. Many of these run on (mostly) single-track heritage lines that are reopened passenger lines, where they have been joined by ex-BR locomotives and some Diesel Multiple Units, but there are companies that do fairly expensive steam tours on the mainline, something guaranteed to make regular users gawp in amazement.

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Linked to all of this is the very active 'heritage' railway scene in the UK, which got started in the 1960s as BR removed steam from the main line and Beeching was removing lines from the passenger maps. A good number of old locomotives were saved from scrapping by a Barry Island owner who decided it made more economic sense to sell them to the preservation movement [[note]]This was mainly due to the price of scrap metal being depressed as a result of mass engine scrapping and engine scrapping being labour intensive -- As a result, over 200 locomotives that should have been scrapped stayed in existence long enough for the emerging preservation movement to ultimately rescue them. The Barry survivors also are partially why Great Western locomotives are common in preservation and LNER locomotives are rare -- lots of GWR engines ended up at Barry, while hardly any LNER engines did.[[/note]] than cut them up. Many of these run on (mostly) single-track heritage lines that are reopened passenger lines, where they have been joined by ex-BR locomotives and some Diesel Multiple Units, but there are companies that do fairly expensive steam tours on the mainline, something guaranteed to make regular users gawp in amazement.
16th Jul '17 11:02:06 AM nombretomado
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* London Cannon Street - a commuter station serving the City of London (ie the financial district) with platforms extending onto the river. The original victorian concourse was replaced by a bland 1960s building, but the red brick walls and towers at the river end have been refurbished. The original arched glass roof over the platforms was removed during WW2 to protect it from bomb damage, and placed in storage in a safe location, which got bombed. Eventually the empty space was used for an office building which makes the station look, from the river side, as if a giant hovercraft is taking a dump in it. Trains using the station have to negotiate a tight curve around Southwark Cathedral, which causes a lot of wear and tear on the wheels.

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* London Cannon Street - a commuter station serving the City of London (ie the financial district) with platforms extending onto the river. The original victorian Victorian concourse was replaced by a bland 1960s building, but the red brick walls and towers at the river end have been refurbished. The original arched glass roof over the platforms was removed during WW2 [=WW2=] to protect it from bomb damage, and placed in storage in a safe location, which got bombed. Eventually the empty space was used for an office building which makes the station look, from the river side, as if a giant hovercraft is taking a dump in it. Trains using the station have to negotiate a tight curve around Southwark Cathedral, which causes a lot of wear and tear on the wheels.
5th Jul '17 5:10:23 AM Jhonny
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It was also thought that passenger numbers were in decline or would remain stagnant at best. In reality whilst the percentage of people chosing rail over other forms of transport has not changed, the population has, and passenger numbers have increased appropriatly. The network now carries more people now than in the late 19th c. when it had a monopoly.

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It was also thought that passenger numbers were in decline or would remain stagnant at best. In reality whilst the percentage of people chosing choosing rail over other forms of transport has not changed, the population has, has as has overall travel across all modes of transport, and passenger numbers have increased appropriatly.appropriately. The network now carries more people now than in the late 19th c. when it had a monopoly.
4th Jul '17 10:17:56 AM nombretomado
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In the late 1960s, British Rail bought the TOPS computer system from Southern Pacific to keep track of its rolling stock. They allocated numbers to their locos, ships (yes, they did own some ships through their Sealink ferry business) and multiple units in a numbering system that survives with some changes to this day - TheOtherWiki has [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Rail_locomotive_and_multiple_unit_numbering_and_classification more information]]. In addition, the Southern Region inherited a multiple unit system from the Southern Railway that still sort of survives today in unofficial form and you will generally hear the Southern classification used for these units in favour of the TOPS one.

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In the late 1960s, British Rail bought the TOPS computer system from Southern Pacific to keep track of its rolling stock. They allocated numbers to their locos, ships (yes, they did own some ships through their Sealink ferry business) and multiple units in a numbering system that survives with some changes to this day - TheOtherWiki Wiki/TheOtherWiki has [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Rail_locomotive_and_multiple_unit_numbering_and_classification more information]]. In addition, the Southern Region inherited a multiple unit system from the Southern Railway that still sort of survives today in unofficial form and you will generally hear the Southern classification used for these units in favour of the TOPS one.
24th Apr '17 7:43:01 PM nombretomado
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London has several major railway stations, referenced in media (there's even a case from the ''ThomasTheTankEngine'' where engines argue about which station is London, not realising they are all correct). In all, at least ''twelve'' stations in Central London open today can be counted as being "major" termini - rather more than the number in other large cities (for comparison, Paris has six, Berlin four, and New York two[[note]]Although the low number for New York can be attributed in part to the general decline of rail travel in the United States and in part to the American mania for "union stations" - that is, single stations to host multiple railroads (New York Penn presently plays host to three, even with the decline) - the fact that the rail-crazy Europeans also have fewer stations just goes to show how strange London is.[[/note]]). This is in large part because of the aforementioned bit with the large number of railway companies in Britain; each liked to operate its own smaller station rather than gather together in a few larger ones. So we now have twelve big stations. In clockwise order from the West direction, these are the current ones:

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London has several major railway stations, referenced in media (there's even a case from the ''ThomasTheTankEngine'' ''WesternAnimation/ThomasTheTankEngine'' where engines argue about which station is London, not realising they are all correct). In all, at least ''twelve'' stations in Central London open today can be counted as being "major" termini - rather more than the number in other large cities (for comparison, Paris has six, Berlin four, and New York two[[note]]Although the low number for New York can be attributed in part to the general decline of rail travel in the United States and in part to the American mania for "union stations" - that is, single stations to host multiple railroads (New York Penn presently plays host to three, even with the decline) - the fact that the rail-crazy Europeans also have fewer stations just goes to show how strange London is.[[/note]]). This is in large part because of the aforementioned bit with the large number of railway companies in Britain; each liked to operate its own smaller station rather than gather together in a few larger ones. So we now have twelve big stations. In clockwise order from the West direction, these are the current ones:
19th Sep '16 11:30:26 AM Exxolon
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- --

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\n - --* ''Series/OhDoctorBeeching'' is named after and set during the titular Doctor's review of the railways.

''Mind the gap between the end of these useful notes and the navigation links below please''
17th Sep '16 5:23:05 PM Arch9enius
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British Railways operated a [[SchizoTech collection of rolling stock]] from Victorian-era six-wheelers and locomotives still eking out an existance on branch lines to the top-link express locomotives of the big four and their predecessors, their own advanced designs and the harbingers of modernisation such as the electric blue and bespeedwhiskered Deltic prototype and GWR railcars. The late '50s to early '60s were probably the golden age of [[RailEnthusiast trainspotting]] as a result.



British Railways operated a [[SchizoTech collection of rolling stock]] from Victorian-era six-wheelers and locomotives still eking out an existance on branch lines to the top-link express locomotives of the big four and their predecessors, their own advanced designs and the harbingers of modernisation such as the electric blue and bespeedwhiskered Deltic prototype and GWR railcars. The late '50s to early '60s were probably the golden age of [[RailEnthusiast trainspotting]] as a result.
12th Sep '16 6:24:58 PM Arch9enius
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British Railways operated a [[SchizoTech collection of rolling stock]] from Victorian-era six-wheelers and locomotives still eking out an existance on branch lines to the top-link express locomotives of the big four and their predecessors, their own advanced designs and the harbingers of modernisation such as the electric blue and bespeedwhiskered Deltic prototype and GWR railcars. The late '50s to early '60s were probably the golden age of [[RailEnthusiast trainspotting]] as a result.



It was also thought that passenger numbers were in decline or would remain stagnant at best. In reality whilst the percentage of people chosing rail over other forms of transport has not changed, the population has, and passenger numbers have increased appropriatly. The network now carries more people now than in the late 19th c. when it had a monopoly.



* London Marylebone. Only six platforms, it provides Chiltern Railways' all-diesel services along the Chiltern Main Line to Birmingham and beyond - it is the only non-electrified London terminus. It was the historic terminus of the Great Central Railway (GCR), which was built to European loading gauge standards and in anticipation of a connection to the Channel Tunnel that never came to fruition. The GCR was closed under Dr. Beeching's "axe", although some of it is now a heritage route.

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* London Marylebone. Only six platforms, it provides Chiltern Railways' all-diesel services along the Chiltern Main Line to Birmingham and beyond - it is the only non-electrified London terminus. It was the historic terminus of the Great Central Railway (GCR), which was built to European loading gauge standards and in anticipation of a connection to the Channel Tunnel that never came to fruition. The GCR was closed under Dr. Beeching's "axe", although some of it is now a heritage route. British Rail coopted the ornate hotel at 222 Marylebone Road as their corporate headqurters.



Most of the trains in regular service the network now have automatic doors, while the rest have doors that are locked remotely pre-departure and can be opened only after arrival. Bizarrely, to leave a non-retrofitted Mk3 carriage[[note]]still the most common type on long-distance services[[/note]]you must open the window, lean out of it, and use the door handle on the outside - much to the confusion of uninformed tourists. Not counting the Eurostar trains, the fastest ones on the network are the Class 91 "Intercity 225" loco-hauled trains found on the East Coast Main Line, the Class 390 "Pendolino" units on the West Coast Main Line, and fastest of all (at 140mph top speed) Southeastern's Class 395 "[[UsefulNotes/HighSpeedRail High-Speed]]" or "Javelin" trains, which partly use domestic sections of Eurostar track with overhead wiring, and partly third-rail commuter lines at slower speeds.

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Most of the trains in regular service the network now have automatic doors, while the rest have doors that are locked remotely pre-departure and can be opened only after arrival. Bizarrely, to leave a non-retrofitted Mk3 carriage[[note]]still the most common type on long-distance services[[/note]]you must open the window, lean out of it, and use the door handle on the outside - much to the confusion of uninformed tourists. Not counting the Eurostar trains, the fastest ones on the network are the InterCity 125, the current confirmed record holder as the fastest diesel-powered train at 148 mph (238 km/h), the Class 91 "Intercity 225" loco-hauled trains found on the East Coast Main Line, the Class 390 "Pendolino" units on the West Coast Main Line, and fastest of all (at 140mph top speed) Southeastern's Class 395 "[[UsefulNotes/HighSpeedRail High-Speed]]" or "Javelin" trains, which partly use domestic sections of Eurostar track with overhead wiring, and partly third-rail commuter lines at slower speeds.



* Class 43 (HST) power car - the world's fastest diesel locomotive, the 'Intercity 125' (always operated as two power cars with a number, varying between franchise, of Mark 3 coaches between them) is nearing the end of its life, but is still very common, especially on the Great Western line.

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* Class 43 (HST) power car - the world's fastest diesel locomotive, the 'Intercity 125' (always operated as two power cars with a number, varying between franchise, of Mark 3 coaches between them) is nearing the end of its life, life despite new engines, but is still very common, especially on the Great Western line.



* Class 37: A diesel locomotive built for BR in the 1960s, many of these still run over both Network Rail and Heritage lines. Known to Rail Enthusiasts as "tractors" due to the distinctive sound of their engines.

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* Class 37: A diesel locomotive built for BR in the 1960s, many of these still run over both Network Rail and Heritage lines. They have a low axle load, meaning high route availability. Known to Rail Enthusiasts as "tractors" due to the distinctive sound of their engines.



* Class 66: A version of an American (EMD) design, these are nicknamed 'Sheds', because, well, they look like one. Very distinctive shapes, due to the pointed roof and large windows. Carry a number of liveries, including Freightliner, EWS, GBRF, Railfreight Services and DB Schenker.
* Class 70: Another recent US-designed locomotive (GE this time), these are operated by Freightliner and Colas Rail.
* Class 90: Electric locomotive powered by overhead wires and operated by several companies.


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* Class 66: A version of an American (EMD) design, these are nicknamed 'Sheds', because, well, they look like one. Very distinctive shapes, due to the pointed roof corrugated sides and large windows.windows. Also notable at their introduction for hardly ever breaking down. Carry a number of liveries, including Freightliner, EWS, GBRF, Railfreight Services and DB Schenker.
* Class 70: Another recent US-designed locomotive (GE this time), these are operated by Freightliner and Colas Rail.
Rail. Some were built in Turkey.
* Class 90: Electric locomotive powered by overhead wires and operated by several companies.

companies. A late British Rail era replacement for [[EveryCarIsAPinto several electric locomotives of the 80-series]]. They have cabs similar to a class 91 but not as pointy, and weren't as fast (110 mph).




* Class 55 'Deltic' - known for their distinctive sound from their two-stroke engine, these diesels were a major improvement in East Coast performance; they were clocking 100mph regularly from 1963. After their replacement by the HST, six have preserved and still do railtours.

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* Class 55 'Deltic' - known for their distinctive sound from their pair of two-stroke engine, engines, these diesels were a major improvement in East Coast performance; they were clocking 100mph regularly from 1963. After their replacement by the HST, six have preserved and still do railtours.



* Britain has historically the most heavily restricted 'loading gauge' to rail width in the world, which basically means that the trains tend to be less wide and less tall than those on the continent; this can cause issues when shipping freight between countries and indeed the first Eurostar trains, the Class 373, are slightly smaller versions of the TGV designed for use on British lines in the south of England that the service ran through until the opening of [[UsefulNotes/HighSpeedRail High Speed 1]]. Running Eurostars beyond London as was initially planned is much complicated by that fact and the rise of low cost airlines has all but guaranteed no such service at least until the opening of High Speed 2. This has also precluded the widespread adoption (or indeed much adoption at all) of double-decker trains, the only example being the two 4DD [=EMUs=] built for the Southern Railway in 1949; they weren't very successful, but stayed in service until 1971, well into the BR era.
* The standard platform height is 915mm (give or take 25mm) compared with the much lower heights in many other countries - you will only have to make one step up to the train when boarding as opposed to the two or three elsewhere.

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* Britain has historically the most heavily restricted 'loading gauge' to rail width in the world, which basically means that the trains tend to be less wide and less tall than those on the continent; this can cause issues when shipping freight between countries and indeed the first Eurostar trains, the Class 373, are slightly smaller versions of the TGV designed for use on British lines in the south of England that the service ran through until the opening of [[UsefulNotes/HighSpeedRail High Speed 1]]. Running Eurostars beyond London as was initially planned is much complicated by that fact and the rise of low cost airlines has all but guaranteed no such service at least until the opening of High Speed 2. This has also precluded the widespread adoption (or indeed much adoption at all) of double-decker trains, the only example being the two 4DD [=EMUs=] built for the Southern Railway in 1949; they weren't very successful, and weren't really double deckers, but stayed in service until 1971, well into the BR era.
* The standard platform height is 915mm (give or take 25mm) compared with the much lower heights in many other countries - you will only have to make one step up to the train when boarding as opposed to the two or three elsewhere.
elsewhere. The platform also impinges on the loading gauge, making British rolling stock use taller wheels and frames then those on the continent.
10th Sep '16 1:08:23 AM Morgenthaler
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->''The supply of [[UsefulNotes/TheBritishEmpire an Empire]]''
->''Where [[BadassBoast the sun never set.]]''
->''[[TheRemnant Which is now deep in darkness,]]''
->''[[HopeSpot But there railway's there yet.]]''

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->''The supply of [[UsefulNotes/TheBritishEmpire an Empire]]''
Empire''
->''Where [[BadassBoast the sun never set.]]''
->''[[TheRemnant Which
''
->''Which
is now deep in darkness,]]''
->''[[HopeSpot But
darkness,''
->''But
there railway's there yet.]]''''
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