Merseyrail – Watch out for Ormskirk Line closures!

Maghull Station

Phase 1 of the platform upgrade work for the new trains will start on the Ormskirk line on 20 October 2018. The following stations will be closed during the work:

Ormskirk to Walton – from 20 October to 28 October
Ormskirk to Old Roan – from 29 October to 9 November

Merseytravel say that high quality rail replacement buses will run between:

Ormskirk and Sandhills – from 20 October to 28 October
Ormskirk and Aintree – from 29 October to 9 November

Aintree Station at night

As well as regular buses stopping at all affected stations, additional express buses will run between selected stations.

More information on these services, all well as full timetables, can be found on www.merseyrail.org/platform-upgrade-works.aspx

Please note: Ticket offices at all Ormskirk line stations will still be staffed, and Northern (Arriva) trains will run from Ormskirk station as usual.

Editors Note:- All the above information is from Merseytravel

Merseyrail – That new train fleet in more detail

The new Stadler trains (ordered by Merseytravel the Transport Committee of Liverpool City Region) which will be coming to Merseyrail in early 2020 look to be innovative and potentially class leading.

Here’s some photos from a mock-up of a Stadler train carriage so you can see how very different the new trains will look from the present rather elderly (40 years old in fact) British Rail built 507 and 508 trains:-

And you can see the mock up yourself too. Here’s where and how:-

The mock-up will be on display at the following times:

· Pacific Road, Birkenhead, CH41 1LJ: 1-14 October, Mon-Sun 8.00 to 17.30, Tues 8.00-19.30

· Liverpool Lime Street, L1 1JD: 5-18 November, Mon-Sun 7.00 to 18.30

The new trains are going to be fitted with battery packs so that they will be able to travel beyond the present electrified 3rd rail network. This brings all kinds of possibilities in terms of expanding the reach of Merseyrail to places like Burscough, Preston, Skelmersdale etc. without the need for costly electrification. Such opportunities are clearly most welcome and OPSTA* will be looking to pursue them at every turn.

With thanks to Bob for the lead to this posting.

*OPSTA – Ormskirk, Preston and Southport Travellers Association

Merseytravel/Merseyrail/Liverpool City Region V RMT train guards dispute ended BUT…….

A 507/508 EMU Merseyrail unit at Crescent Road level crossing – Birkdale, Southport.

So the RMT guards dispute is finally over and the near end result seems to be about the best that could have been hoped for by the RMT trade union and indeed the travelling public who backed them in their quest to have a 2nd member of staff on every Merseyrail Train when the new Stadler trains are introduced.

BUT, and its a big but, of course the new train fleet ordered by Merseytravel (the Transport Committee of the Liverpool City Region) was the cause of the dispute and I’m surprised that other commentators don’t seem to have grasped that pertinent point i.e. that Merseyrail were as much the victims of the political decision to have only a Driver Only Operation as the RMT trade union.

I do wonder whether behind the scenes the owners of the Merseyrail franchise (Serco and Abellio) had signaled (no railway pun intended here) that they had had a gut full of being the fall-guys for this dispute?

Merseyrail – Mock up of new Stadler trains to go on show in November

Despite all the controversy and indeed industrial action as a consequence of Merseytravel ordering new rolling stock that does not require train guards the new trains are presently being manufactured by Stadler the Swiss company who won the bidding process.

The Liverpool Echo has an article about a mock up of the trains on its web site – see link below:-

www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/business/first-look-inside-futuristic-new-15031395

The mock up is due to go on show to the public in Liverpool’s Lime Street in November.

Merseyrail – More about the new trains

A new Stadler Merseyrail train artist impression

www.railwaygazette.com/news/traction-rolling-stock/single-view/view/battery-trial-planned-for-new-emu-fleet.html

The Railway Gazette has the details on is web site – see link above

An article for those of you more interested in the technical aspects of the new and soon to be delivered rolling stock for the Merseyrail network.

With thanks to Colin for the lead to this posting

Merseyrail – Video clips on RMT Guards dispute, new Stadler trains etc.

A 507/508 EMU Merseyrail unit at Crescent Road level crossing – Birkdale, Southport.

www.merseyrail.org/seasonal/new-fleet-videos.aspx

The videos are available on the Merseyrail web site – see link above

Yes of course, these video clips can be seen as one side of a propaganda war between Merseyrail and the RMT, although as I have said many times before Merseyrail are just the front for the dispute on the employers side as the real creators of the dispute are in fact Merseytravel, the public transport body for the Liverpool City Region.

I continue to scratch my head about how Merseyrail keep pretending the dispute is all theirs as they shield Merseytravel. However, I wonder what their feelings are behind closed doors? A little more robust, so to speak, about Merseytravel?

What’s even more odd is how the RMT seem to look at Merseyrail as their opposition in this dispute when in fact they know only too well that the rail operating company is simply carrying out the bidding of Merseytravel.

What an odd dispute this is in terms of how it was caused and by whom. But whatever the lines of dispute may be and how clouded they clearly are the Merseyrail travelling public still seem to be full square behind the RMT union.