Chairman Pip's Railway Thoughts

“…then there’s the trial”

Posted in Commuter, Customer service, Great Britain, Infrastructure, Rolling stock by Chairman Pip on 7 January 2011

A brief update about the lightweight rail trail due to take place on the Mid-Hants Railway, which (and I shall flagellate myself severely for this) I failed to find first time round. The trial is due to last from the 26th January until the 18th February, and will provide connection with five South West Trains services from Alton in the morning. Similarly, it will connect with five arrivals at Alton in the evening. Now, some people have poured a certain degree of scorn on this, discussing the size of the ex Class 999 railcar that is being used for the trial, as well as the service level (five trains in each direction in the morning and five in the evening). As to the size of the vehicle, and the number of passengers it can accomodate, well, it can accomodate around 50, which is not all that bad for a small railcar. And let us not forget, not everyone that gets off a train at Alton will use the connection. Similarly, the five trains per day is because it is a trial, and a short trial at that, to see whether it is viable to run at peak times. Beyond connecting tourists with the Watercress Line, the service probably wouldn’t see a great deal of use during the day. As I have said, this could be the start of something very good. The Stourbridge line trial proved the concept so well that it is in full service. This though is the very thing that Parry People Movers Ltd had in mind. So let us wish all the best for this new venture.

22nd December 2010 – GOCO Mid Hants Link trial information
We have received additional information about the proposed GOCO Mid Hants Link trial service between Medstead & Four Marks and Alton.

The trial will now run on Monday-Friday for 4 weeks from Jan 24th to Feb 18th (This is one week later than originally proposed).

Connection will be made with 5 morning departures from Alton to Waterloo from 06.44 to 08.44 inclusive, and with a corresponding number of evening arrivals at Alton between 17.41 and 20.04.

  • Morning Departures of the GOCO Mid Hants Link from Medstead & Four Marks will be at 06.22, 06.53, 07.24, 07.55 and 08.27.
  • Evening departures from Alton will be at 17.46, 18.35, 19.08, 19.39 and 20.10.

Fares for the duration of the trial period have been agreed as:
Adult: £3.00 single, £5.00 return
Child: £2.00 single, £3.00 return.
Tickets will be issued on the GOCO Mid Hants Link train. (No through ticketing is possible onto SWT for the period of the trial.)

Additional parking has been arranged at Medstead & Four Marks in the Woodlea Park industrial estate, and the MHR will also bee installing cycle hoops.

Volunteer staff are still sought for ticket issue duties on the Link trains, in order to provide a small pool of staff. Safety training will be offered by the MHR to cover emergency situations.
Alton Line Users Association

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