Thursday, 12 June 2008

Chesham shuttle replacement proposed

TfL have announced a proposal to replace the Chesham shuttle at the far end of the Metropolitan Line. Currently most trains from London run to Amersham, with Chesham served by a half hourly shuttle from Chaltfont & Latimer, with the odd through train during peak hours.

The proposal is to get rid of the shuttle and have the through trains alternate between going to Chesham and Amersham. Amersham is also served by Chiltern trains, so will have 4 trains an hour to London on weekdays rather than 6.

The impetus for this is the introduction of S stock to the Metropolitan Line in the next year or two, which will be made up solely of 8 car trains, rather than pairs of 4 car trains as now. The bay platform at Chalfont & Latimer used by the shuttle is only 4 cars long and would be difficult to extend.

The date given for the new service pattern is May 2009, which may indicate the Modern Railways story about the introduction of S Stock being postponed to after 2012 is nonsense.


THC said...

hggyflanTwo pre-production trains are due to be delivered next year for full evaluation ahead of the main build, but AIUI the plan hasn't changed; 'S' stock won't be introduced in any meangingful manner on the Met until after 2011/2.

I had hoped that LU would instead have retained a couple of four-car sets of 'A' stock to operate the Chesham shuttle, in the same way that SWT operate a pair of Mk1 EMUs on the Brockenhurst-Lymington branch in Hampshire. However this seems like a reasonable solution and the good people of Chesham will enjoy a better service. Good for them.


Anonymous said...

Let's hope the seats on the S Stock look a bit less 70's than what looks destined for LO:

Jon said...

I'm confused about how Tfl talk about the halving of the met line service to Amersham* in an article with the words "service improvements" in the title. Doublespeak anyone?
I agree with thc about the retention of the shuttle using the old stock though.

*in total a service reduction of 33% when including Chiltern trains

Max Roberts said...


Amersham, between-peak station entries (2007, source, TfL web page) 986, Chesham, 159.

So, the station with five times the traffic gets a reduced service, the station with the less traffic gets no service enhancement, just a chance to avoid changing trains, and all because no one at TfL can work out how to unplug some carriages and join them together in a different way.

solar penguin said...

I wonder if the Croxley link being dropped has anything to do with this decision? I can imagine TfL planning to run some sort of Chesham/Watford Jcn shuttle, which would add all sorts of new opportunities, but having to rethink everything when that scheme folded...

Ian Bartlett said...

cyildcqMax Roberts quotes the station entry figures for Amersham and Chesham. However, owing to the shuttle service, many people (me included) drive to Amersham instead of using Chesham. Through trains would increase the numbers using Chesham, take some pressure off Amersham and remove traffic from the road between Chesham and Amersham. Also, most people using Amersham use the Chiltern Railways service and not the Met line trains so cutting a couple out will make virtually no difference to Amersham travellers.

THC said...

SP - the Croxley Rail Link hasn't been dropped but, thanks to a combination of Kafkaesque complexity (in leading and funding the project) and Governmental obfuscation, it remains on the drawing board. Quite simply, DafT would rather fund white-elephant guided busways in Bedfordshire or Cambridgeshire than stump up the balance to deliver this project, with its myriad benefits of network integration, employment access and large-scale regeneration. (Yes, I'm a supporter - can you tell?)


solar penguin said...

THC - okay, maybe "dropped" wasn't quite the right word. But you know what I meant.