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Unread 16-12-2015, 12:18   #1
Mickey H
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Default Translink postpones introducing new timetable

Translink has postponed the introduction of a new timetable for the Enterprise train service to Dublin.
An earlier 06.15 GMT Belfast departure time had been due to begin at the end of January.
But the journey time would have taken longer - almost two and a half hours.
However Translink has now said that "alternative options" are being looked at. Passengers have been consulted by Translink and Iarnród Éireann about the proposed changes.
The service is operated jointly by Translink and Iarnród Éireann.
"The companies will work together to review feedback from the timetable consultation processes," a statement from Translink read.
It added they hoped to finalise a new timetable by the end of "the first quarter of 2016".

Source http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-35109882
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Unread 16-12-2015, 12:44   #2
Inniskeen
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Obviously Translink have been inundated with positive responses !

Why wouldn't passengers want to get up even earlier, have less choice and not appreciate the additional time to enjoy the countryside or count the sleepers between Malahide and Connolly.
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Unread 16-12-2015, 12:58   #3
James Howard
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I wonder if Irish Rail will pay the same degree of attention to their customers.
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Unread 16-12-2015, 13:27   #4
Dublin13
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It'll probably delay everything south of the border too.
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Unread 16-12-2015, 13:43   #5
Mark Gleeson
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The number 1 ask from Belfast business travelers has been for a pre 9am arrival.
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Unread 16-12-2015, 14:44   #6
Padna
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Originally Posted by Inniskeen View Post
Why wouldn't passengers want to get up even earlier
Passengers travelling from Newry, Dundalk and Drogheda to work in Dublin city centre and looking to be in their workplace by 9am would have had an extra 27, 20 and 18 minutes in bed respectively if the proposed new timetable were implemented.
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Unread 16-12-2015, 14:47   #7
James Shields
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I agree that a timetable that gets to Dublin or Belfast in time for a 9:00 meeting is essential, but so is improving the journey time. At the moment IE don't seem to even have a proposal on the table for such improvement.

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Unread 16-12-2015, 15:27   #8
Mark Gleeson
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Cutting out Lisburn would be a start
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Unread 16-12-2015, 16:12   #9
berneyarms
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Originally Posted by Inniskeen View Post
Obviously Translink have been inundated with positive responses !

Why wouldn't passengers want to get up even earlier, have less choice and not appreciate the additional time to enjoy the countryside or count the sleepers between Malahide and Connolly.
Perhaps because the first train from Belfast will finally arrive in Dublin pre-9am, ensuring that this is possible on every radial InterCity Route.

That is a no-brainer I would suggest.

Last edited by berneyarms : 16-12-2015 at 18:27.
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Unread 16-12-2015, 20:14   #10
Jamie2k9
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Cutting out Lisburn would be a start
Will that 3 or 4 minutes benefit or will it be a case of stuck behind a commuter service out of Belfast?

Is there even usage outside local traffic?
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Unread 16-12-2015, 20:37   #11
Inniskeen
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Perhaps because the first train from Belfast will finally arrive in Dublin pre-9am, ensuring that this is possible on every radial InterCity Route.

That is a no-brainer I would suggest.
The 0650 used to regularly arrive before 0900 until one of the last batch of "no brainer" timetable changes which shuffled the DARTs around creating more congestion but no extra services.
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Unread 16-12-2015, 20:51   #12
Inniskeen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Padna View Post
Passengers travelling from Newry, Dundalk and Drogheda to work in Dublin city centre and looking to be in their workplace by 9am would have had an extra 27, 20 and 18 minutes in bed respectively if the proposed new timetable were implemented.
Well passengers from Newry will have no choice - they will have to depart earlier or abandon the train in favour of other modes. The bulk of Newry passngers would appear to prefer the existing 0745 departure to the lure of an 0841 arrival. Simple solution is to restore the 0650 to an arrival at 0900 and extend the 0700 from Dundalk to start in Newry at 0645. This would give a modestly acceptable service from Newry.

For Dundalk and Drogheda advance the current 0755 relief to 0730 and have it arrive in Connolly at 0841. Dundalk would then have services at 0630, 0700, 0730 and 0800, not great but better than either the current or proposed offering. Under this scenario the 0645 from Newry to Bray could start in Drogheda (virtually empty) and offer additional accommodation for stations between Laytown and Donabate.
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Unread 17-12-2015, 01:34   #13
dowlingm
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How many of these Newry passengers are there to be perturbed at this point? Is this actually worthwhile or just kept going to suit political or IE managerial whims?
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Unread 17-12-2015, 05:39   #14
berneyarms
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Originally Posted by Inniskeen View Post
The 0650 used to regularly arrive before 0900 until one of the last batch of "no brainer" timetable changes which shuffled the DARTs around creating more congestion but no extra services.
By about 1 minute.

You need an arrival scheduled around 20 minutes before 09:00 to allow people to get to wherever they're going in the city centre by 09:00!
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Unread 17-12-2015, 07:40   #15
Dublin13
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Absolutely, as someone who works with a company who often has people from Belfast to visit us or for meetings, I complete agree with you on the need for an arrival more than a few minutes before 9am
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Unread 17-12-2015, 12:40   #16
Inniskeen
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By about 1 minute.

You need an arrival scheduled around 20 minutes before 09:00 to allow people to get to wherever they're going in the city centre by 09:00!
Yes ideally there should be an earlier arrival from Belfast, but it shouldn't require such a pathetically uncompettitive journey time.

One potential option would be to extend the 0700 from Dundalk to start in Belfast or as an interim measure take a connection at Newry from Belfast. Alternatively start the 0700 from Dundalk in Belfast and have NIR operate the service throughout. Irish Rail would then operate the 0715 from Newry to Belfast and return as a new, much needed, service around 0900 from Belfast. This could even be an 0600 or similar from Dublin. This would require a little bit of co-operation between the two companies but would be to the benefit of both as well as delivering a significant improvement in services. Under this scenario the 0650 from Belfast could continue to operate as is.
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Unread 17-12-2015, 15:22   #17
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Quote:
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Passengers travelling from Newry, Dundalk and Drogheda to work in Dublin city centre and looking to be in their workplace by 9am would have had an extra 27, 20 and 18 minutes in bed respectively if the proposed new timetable were implemented.
The main focus of complaints is within the Greater Belfast Area. The 06:15 departure time is felt to be too early, particularly as it would leave before even the first local service reaches Belfast Central. The latter is an issue as many existing Northern Irish passengers will be unable to connect to the service.

There is also a sense in Northern Ireland that Iarnrod Eireann and the NTA sprang the timetable upon Translink without considering the joint nature of the service.

While there is huge support in Northern Ireland for a pre-9am arrival in Dublin, there is a desire that this is delivered through improved journey times. There seems to be a definite awareness that the key stumbling block seems to be Iarnrod Eireann's prioritization of local traffic.

Last edited by RPI : 17-12-2015 at 15:26.
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Unread 17-12-2015, 17:52   #18
Inniskeen
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The main focus of complaints is within the Greater Belfast Area. The 06:15 departure time is felt to be too early, particularly as it would leave before even the first local service reaches Belfast Central. The latter is an issue as many existing Northern Irish passengers will be unable to connect to the service.

There is also a sense in Northern Ireland that Iarnrod Eireann and the NTA sprang the timetable upon Translink without considering the joint nature of the service.

While there is huge support in Northern Ireland for a pre-9am arrival in Dublin, there is a desire that this is delivered through improved journey times. There seems to be a definite awareness that the key stumbling block seems to be Iarnrod Eireann's prioritization of local traffic.
I think you summarise the situation very well. As far as Irish Rail and the NTA the Enterprise and Dundalk are nuisance. The long term ambition seems to be to convert the northern line into a tram-like DART service and operate it as an appendage to the slow lines between Hazelhatch and Inchicore through the stalled DART interconnector.

It would be interesting to know when NIR were approached about this timetable and whether or not the DRD in Belfast were consulted. Could it be that the partitionist mindset is alive and well in Dublin ?
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Unread 17-12-2015, 20:25   #19
Mark Gleeson
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Translink were consulted, they had to provide the paths for the service and agree to the increase on Sunday.

Both IE and NIR management have been asked over and over again to get a train to Dublin before 0845, its a serious business need to do this. Equally the ask for a train to Belfast before 9am has been made numerous times (0610 would work fine...)

NIR its their problem to provide a connecting train

No amount of improvement would get the 0650 to Dublin for 0845, just not possible, non stop, nothing in the way 1 hour 43 is the current benchmark, add in 4 stops, you are over 2 hours

Its very obvious how much slower the train is once in Northern Ireland, its painfully slow, while Dublin Dundalk is always a fairly swift trip, basically an unbroken 90 mph railway north of Malahide bar the stations in Drogheda and Dundalk
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Unread 18-12-2015, 07:33   #20
Inniskeen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Gleeson View Post
Translink were consulted, they had to provide the paths for the service and agree to the increase on Sunday.

Both IE and NIR management have been asked over and over again to get a train to Dublin before 0845, its a serious business need to do this. Equally the ask for a train to Belfast before 9am has been made numerous times (0610 would work fine...)

NIR its their problem to provide a connecting train

No amount of improvement would get the 0650 to Dublin for 0845, just not possible, non stop, nothing in the way 1 hour 43 is the current benchmark, add in 4 stops, you are over 2 hours

Its very obvious how much slower the train is once in Northern Ireland, its painfully slow, while Dublin Dundalk is always a fairly swift trip, basically an unbroken 90 mph railway north of Malahide bar the stations in Drogheda and Dundalk
So what is the strategy for the Enterprise and longer distance commuters (Donabate to Newry) on the Dublin/Belfast line - the evidence of recent timetables and this proposal is that the users of these services can expect an incrementally degraded service which will culminate in a DART extension to Balbriggan or Drogheda with even slower journey times. There needs to be a published strategy and an honesty about what is intended.

It is clear that the current direction will deliver a service that is increasingly less relevant beyond Malahide and which will carry a fraction of the numbers which could be carried with even modest investment in strategically placed multiple tracking and/or overtaking loops.

No question about an earlier arrival from Belfast, obvious answer is an additional service, maybe 0605 and 0705 from Belfast and yes an 0610 from Dublin.

Not sure what you mean about NIR having a responsibility to provide a connecting service.

Previous Belfast to Dublin schedules had a journey time of an 1hr-45 minutes with one stop. Time to understand why this is now impossible and to address the issues. Maybe 100mph running over significant sections of the route would help and should be achievable at very modest coat - in many instances just changing the 90 mph boards might be all that is required.
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