Reports: April 2012

The reports provided here come in various formats, indicated on the download link. Portable Document File (.pdf) files require Adobe Acrobat reader, Document (.doc) files require Microsoft Word. Other reports are html documents which you can click on directly. If you have any questions, please get in touch.

PTN Document

Timetabling HS2

3 April 2012

In September 2010 Greengauge 21 commissioned PTN to construct a timetable for the combined service of the proposed new high-speed railway [HS2] and the existing West Coast Main Line [WCML], as it might operate when phase 1 of HS2 opens in about 2026.  Hitherto only rather vague statements had been made about how capacity released at the southern end of WCML following the transfer of services to HS2 might be used, and Greengauge believed that support for HS2 would be strengthened by demonstrating the benefits offered by new services, additional seats for commuters and extra paths for freight trains.

The general findings of the study were published by Greengauge in February 2011:

The detailed report was finalised in July 2011 and includes extensive documentation of the timetable ideas.  This material can be found here :

*  the report at WCML+HS2 report.doc

*  the timetable graphs and 'netzgrafik' summaries of the proposals at WCML+HS2 graphs.doc

*  a summary of the suggested public timetable at WCML+HS2 public timetable.xls

As far as PTN knows this is the only timetabling that has been conducted for HS2 services in any depth.  We find this rather astonishing and will be commenting on the issue in other entries.



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PTN Document

Open Access on a congested railway : the sceptical case

2 April 2012

In the autumn of 2011 the Office of Rail Regulation [ORR] ran a consultation on the potential for increased on-rail competition.  The consultation document and the academic paper accompanying it were manifestly supportive of promoting more competition, ie. more open access.  The responses however were more mixed: the only unequivocal support came from two organisations with a direct interest, while other passenger operators, local governments and the freight industry expressed considerable reservations.  The Department for Transport made very clear its disquiet, thereby highlighting the absurdity of the overlapping functions (it estimates that open access increases the net cost of the railway by £30m/year).

PTN made a comprehensive submission, looking at on-rail competition from every aspect and drawing attention to some overlooked disadvantages of open access.

The ORR documents and the responses can be found at

PTN's submission: ORR_competition_consultation_PTN.doc .


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