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Nice to see you

Author: By Trevor Garrod (additional material by Jerry Alderson) - Published Mon 09 of May, 2016 17:28 BST - (3585 Reads)
In April 2016 a group of Railfuture members visited Nice in the south of France, having taken a train from London. Place Garibaldi (centre photo, above) has been pedestrianised since the introduction of the initial 8.7km Nice tram system in 2007. At this point the tram lowers its pantograph and is powered by batteries. Birmingham Victoria Square will also be catenary-free when Midland Metro opens its extension to Centenary Square in 2019. All photos taken from Wikipedia.

Washington DC compared

Author: Ian Brown - Published Tue 03 of May, 2016 21:34 BST - (8159 Reads)
Washington DC has a developing network of Metro routes and suburban and long distance rail routes. Railfuture’s Policy Director, Ian Brown CBE spent a week working in Washington in April and took the opportunity to examine the Metro network, visit Washington Union main line station also travel on the two suburban rail systems as well as Amtrak’s Regional main line service to New York.
Photo: Restored glory in the form of the concourse at Washington Union station. The station serves as a hub for long distance and commuter services serving the City with good interchange on to the Washington Metro.

Cambridge North progress

Author: Peter Wakefield - Published Thu 14 of Apr, 2016 17:26 BST - (9554 Reads)
Cambridge North station is well underway to completion. It is due to open in May 2017.
Photos courtesy Network Rail

Moscow compared

Author: Ian Brown - Published Wed 06 of Apr, 2016 17:50 BST - (8531 Reads)
Moscow is served by a huge system of long distance and suburban rail, an efficient Metro and tram system. Railfuture’s Policy Director, Ian Brown CBE, gives his impressions of using the system over a few days in April 2016 and visiting four of the main line stations.
Photo: Best practice station design. Many Moscow metro stations are extremely ornate. Here is an example of one which is not but shows best practice in terms of station design. Total access to the length of the train. No clutter. Escalators at each end.

East-West double boost

Author: Phil Smart - Published Tue 05 of Apr, 2016 16:09 BST - (6463 Reads)
Phil Smart, a member of Railfuture and a councillor on Ipswich Borough Council (one of the founders of the ‘East-West Rail Consortium’ of local authorities) welcomes the announcement by Network Rail of the preferred corridor for the East West Rail Central Section, and the support of the National Infrastructure Commission. Photo: the new Addenbrookes station site, the only common point on the various route options.

Hopping to catch a train

Author: Jerry Alderson - Published Mon 28 of Mar, 2016 20:16 BST - (6427 Reads)
Many railway passengers spend time nervously hoping to catch a train. However, Railfuture director Jerry Alderson spent a day in Vienna hopping to catch a train thanks to an accident that left him with a cast (bottom right photo) and hobbling around on crutches. Becoming a person of restricted mobility, albeit only for a couple of months, opened his eyes to how transport systems fail to cater properly for all their customers. His experience will certainly influence Railfuture’s campaigns to improve the rail-based systems in Britain.

In highly respected and advanced countries such as Austria the trams dating from the 1960s (top left photo from “Wiener Linien Blog” – all others by the author) are already being scrapped and modern trains are replacing the high-floor 1980s ones (bottom row) but passengers must still “mind the gap”.

Keeping London moving

Author: Chris Page - Published Thu 24 of Mar, 2016 21:12 GMT - (7976 Reads)
By the 2030s London will be a megacity of more than 10 million people. Even allowing for planned investment and the imminent arrival of the East-West Crossrail line, the capital will grind to a halt unless significant further improvements are made. That’s why London needs Crossrail 2 as quickly as possible.

Response to Shaw report

Author: Ian Brown - Published Wed 23 of Mar, 2016 11:40 GMT - (5094 Reads)

Nicola Shaw CBE, formerly CEO of HS1, was asked by government to produce a report on the future shape and financing of Network Rail. This is Railfuture's response to the Shaw Report, by our Policy Director, Ian Brown CBE BSc FCILT.

Graphic from the Shaw report shows the new shape for Network Rail.

Blue sky over Wight

Author: Chris Page - Published Mon 21 of Mar, 2016 12:17 GMT - (5778 Reads)
Written on a bright sunny day on the island, this article does not pretend to provide the answer for Island Line; rather it aims to stimulate the political discussion, economic analysis, commercial negotiation and technical investigation necessary to achieve a sustainable long-term solution. T69 tram recently withdrawn by Midland Metro, suggested in the Garnett report for the Isle of Wight – photo by Joshua Brown reproduced under Creative Commons

Garnett on Wight

Author: Stuart George - Published Fri 11 of Mar, 2016 12:08 GMT - (5564 Reads)
Stuart George, chairman of the IW Bus & Rail Users’ Group and a Railfuture member living on the Isle of Wight, reviews the report by Christopher Garnett on the future of the Island Line.

Celebrating a campaigner

Author: David Harby - Published Wed 24 of Feb, 2016 16:42 GMT - (4629 Reads)
A bench, presented by Railfuture, and inscribed in the memory of Brian James Hastings was unveiled at Crowle station on 23rd February.

Delay repay losers

Author: Jerry Alderson - Published Fri 12 of Feb, 2016 20:42 GMT - (9221 Reads)
Britain is perceived to have high rail fares in comparison to other European countries. However, the entire package needs to be considered and few people appreciate some of the ’freebies’ that the fare buys, including a generous refund policy when trains are delayed. Unfortunately some people have abused this – fraudulently – for financial gain, as a news article in the London Evening Standard showed on 11th February 2016 (see photo and headline above).