Bob Horton, First Chairman of Railtrack Dies
An appreciation from Phil Marsh.
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We keep our ear to the ground and you updated with all the exciting rail news and events in 2011. Check this section out regularly to stay up to date.
The overhaul of the National Railway Museum’s iconic LNER locomotive Flying Scotsman has been followed with more than usual interest following the discovery of cracks as the engine was about to return to service.
The newly enlarged and improved Farringdon station was opened marking a major part of the first phase of the Thameslink project being completed, coinciding with the commencement of the Winter 2012 timetable.
Life for any passenger using Blackfriars, but having to go to the Southbank area of The Thames was made considerably easier with the opening of Blackfriars’ new southern ticket hall and entrance/exit on December 12.
One of the most viewed news stories featured on rail.co.uk has been that of the failure of GWR King No. 6023 King Edward 11 with thousands of people accessing it, so this is the update concerning the repairs.
A trio of station developments at narrow gauge railways are in the news this month: one revived, one hoping for HLF funding, one secures planning permission.
The 15in gauge Evesham Vale Light Railway will have new operators from January 3.
The NRM has announced the 15 locomotives – all steam - booked to appear at its June 2-10 ‘Railfest 2012’ event, the largest railway event in the UK next year.
UK Rail fares are set to increase by an average of 5.9% in January but this is 2% less than originally announced in mid-August.
The Office of The Rail Regulator (ORR) had warned Network Rail (NR) that the railway infrastructure company was not performing well with delays attributed to infrastructure growing, while punctuality targets were being missed by some distance.
The long running but crucial Thameslink project is now about to deliver some key outputs with the introduction of 12 car trains from the start of the winter timetable on December 11.
The Thameslink project has had a huge impact on passengers using Farringdon for the last few years with no weekend or late evening services due to reconstruction upgrade works.
Britain’s third largest Rail Freight haulier has beaten off competition to operate the main line rail requirements of a steel plant, being re-opened on December 8.
A 32 feet high Christmas Tree was erected at St. Pancras International on November 24 made from 600,000 pieces of lego, including the decorations!
We’ve all heard about ’Leaves on the line’ and moaned about it, but we look at how they affect rail services and how Network Rail keeps those seasonal delays down.
In an interesting announcement, it has been revealed that First Great Western (FGW) will be offering 9% more seats on their services to and from Paddington next year.
A train comprised of Gresley designed and built carriages ran away from Grosmont station on November 15 and became derailed blocking the Network Rail line to Whitby.
It appears that two steam locomotive headlamps belonging to the Sir Nigel Gresley Locomotive Preservation Trust (SNGLPT) may have been stolen.
But “Tangmere” is beset by issues arising from a seemingly bumbling Network Rail.
The latest member of The Class 390 “Pendolino” fleet arrived on Wednesday November 16 after being delivered from Italy via the Channel Tunnel.
The summer peak is over and the autumn steam gala events have finished, but there is plenty of steam action to look forward to on Britain’s heritage lines.
Direct Rail Services, (DRS) - one of Britain’s freight operating companies, has reduced the size of its modern Class 66 fleet allowing Freightliner, Britain’s second largest freight operating company, take on the locomotives with immediate effect.
The autumnal increase in the Class 60 fleet sees the first of the overhauled locomotives face their first leaf fall season.
Arriva PLC, the German owned UK Subsidiary, has taken over Grand Central, the East Coast main line Open Access Operator making it the largest UK rail operator by far.
Vintage Trains, the Tyseley based Railtour operator, are gearing up to operate what may be a contender for the unusual steam charter train of the year.
The world’s most famous steam railway hosts a Sunny Southern Gala.
The cause of the only serious accident involving a Class 390 Pendolino train operated by Virgin on February 23, 2007 has now been announced.
The Vintage Trains’ Pannier Tank No. 7752 will be undertaking a test run on November 10 between Hall Green and Stratford on Avon running as London Transport red liveried No. L94.
GB Railfreight commits to increasing and maintaining its fleet of heritage Class 73 Diesel Electric locomotives
Network Rail is leading a huge £500m project centred around Reading station on the Great West Main Line (GWML) which will also provide a new flyover and reinstate a dive-under allowing more trains to operate.
Kent’s Bredgar & Wormshill Light Railway made a late decision to hold an October 30 Autumn Steam Gala with pre-event publicity anticipated steaming at least five locomotives.
The Spa Valley Railway goes from High Weald to North Downs for one week only!
Britain’s biggest freight company has had to restore many electric locomotives for work being cheaper to operate than their diesel fleet.
Direct Rail Services (DRS) started a new container service from the Teesport PD Ports’ container terminal using an innovative wagon to transport what are known as ‘high-cube boxes’ to areas of the UK previously inaccessible by rail.
The end of London Midland using the Class 150 train will be marked by a special train from Snow Hill to Worcester, Bridgorth and Stratford on Avon via the Lickey on November 12.
Construction of what is claimed to be the largest piece of artwork in the World and the UK’s largest sculpture named Orbit, reached a major milestone on October 28.
Five Class 55s haul trains at the ELR.
The Minister of State for Transport (Theresa Villiers) announced in a written statement that Abellio Greater Anglia Limited has been awarded the Greater Anglia (Short) franchise.
The Warley Model Railway show is the largest exhibition of model and miniature railways in the UK and takes place on November 19 and 20.
The East Lancashire Railway celebrated the 50th Anniversary of the “Deltic” (BR Class 55) of locomotive with an ever-popular Diesel Event dedicated to the type.
The final preserved railway tranche of steam galas will be held on the last weekend in October and the first weekend in November.
The blue liveried Great Western Railway ‘King’ No. 6023 King Edward 11 is at the centre of a blazing row at Didcot following boiler leaks.
The Leighton Buzzard narrow Gauge Railway celebrated two anniversaries recently by holding a Gala event which took visitors back to the line’s roots.
A convoy of five “Deltic” locomotives has left many enthusiasts in awe, 30 years since the withdrawal of the type from front line service.
The purchase and overhaul of the National Railway Museum’s Iconic steam locomotive, No. 4472 Flying Scotsman now looks as though it could cost up to FOUR MILLION POUNDS.
Following the fires in the Doncaster area on September 2 caused by former Southern Railway ‘King Arthur’ No. 30777 Sir Lamiel, Network Rail (NR) has taken draconian action and banned all steam trains on the East Coast Main Line on weekdays with immediate effect.
George Hinchcliffe has died aged 89 marking the end of a remarkable career including managing and rescuing Flying Scotsman from its American tour in1973.
A small factory alongside a house and garden amid the rolling hills of Herefordshire is maybe not the most obvious location for a significant railway business.
A couple of new freight line tours have been announced to take place this month making this Autumn somewhat of a freight line frenzy!
The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) which now runs Sellafield and 18 other UK nuclear sites has placed an instant ban on steam charter trains using their Sellafield facilities.
Rail Blue Charters has announced that it is to suspend operations for the rest of the year at least, following six consecutive charter train cancellations.
Cruise Liner Express trains are operated by Direct Rail Services for passengers embarking on a cruise from Southampton Docks or returning from their cruise.
Chiltern Railways has introduced direct competition to Virgin with their London to Birmingham services running under the ‘Mainline’ banner introduced last month.
Freight operators DB Shenker has offered for sale 33 of its Class 56 diesel fleet currently stored at Crewe, Toton, Warrington, Barrow Hill and Eastleigh.
The Pontypool and Blaenavon Railway brought stirring sights and amazing sounds of hard working industrial steam during its September 17-18 Autumn Gala.
South West Trains has a good reputation for operating an efficient service on one of the busiest routes in Britain and has just been voted the best Passenger Operator in the UK.
North Yorkshire Moors Steam Railway bills no less than NINE engines for their Autumn Steam Gala between September 30 and October 2.
Joan and Jack enjoy a steamy weekend on the Welshpool and Llanfair Railway and Rhiw Valley Light Railway news.
In late September it looked increasingly unlikely that iconic steam locomotive No. 4472, Flying Scotsman would be steaming anywhere this year with indications it could be well into 2012 before the A3 turns a wheel under its own power.
A massive 25% discount is now on offer to anyone booking a table of four on the CLIC Sargent Train of Hope scenic charity railtour. That’s buy three get one free!
A summary of the most relevant rail news this September so far...
Join the UK’s premier railway-based beer festival from September 6 to September 10 inclusive!
Swanley Park was purchased by the local council from a Farmer 30 years ago and very soon opened for public use as a civic amenity. It now celebrates its 25th anniversary.
August did not bring the best of news for two prestige locomotives carrying blue livery.
Spitfire Railtours announced their intention to run two “Routes & Branches” railtours from London.
One of the fastest and most influential trains in the world is being welcomed into its new home at Coventry’s Electric Railway Museum.
Phil Marsh takes an objective look at the High Speed UK rail debate.
Find out more about the Duchess' plans to possibly return to the main line.
Find details here on how to visit the biggest and best steam gala events by rail.
The 4-4-0 Maunsell designed ‘Schools’ Class V s once again inside Eastleigh Works being overhauled.
Adrian Shooter has announced his intention to retire at the end of December.
The East Anglian Railway Museum (EARM) have taken an important delivery!
A roundup of of all Network Rail projects currently underway in June 2011.
The Great Western Society’s steam Railmotor No. 93 has entered service at Didcot Railway Centre.
The system has been introduced on the Cambrian and ends steam operations.
Ffestiniog celebrates its 175th anniversary and completion of revived Welsh Highland Railway
Chiltern Railways unveil new train and finish station upgrade project.
Behind the scenes of the Great Britain 4 UK Railtour - April 2011