Saturday, May 07, 2005


As I mentioned previously, this will be the last entry for a few weeks as I am now officially on holiday!
Normally the last shift before my holidays throws all sorts of problems at me, but today was actually very quiet!
I did think things were going to go 'up the wall' at one stage when there was a power cut at east Hame which caused a signal failure. Luckily the signal started working again, although East Ham station was closed for a while because it had no lighting.

I also mentioned previously that politics bores me senseless, however I noted with interest that the Putney constituency has voted in a young conservative by the name of Justine Greening. One of the things she campaigned for is a better service on the Wimbledon branch of the District Line.
I wish Ms Greening good luck in trying to improve the service, but to be honest, the capacity on the Wimbledon branch is pretty much fully used anyway. In other words, the infrastructure couldn't cope with any more trains unless there is a huge investment in new signals etc to provide more signalling sections, therefore allow more trains to follow each other.
The Wimbledon branch gets an excellent deal as it is, with trains every five minutes for most of the day. I know it's a very busy branch but it already gets a better service than the Ealing Broadway or Richmond branches, which only have trains every ten minutes.
Obviously this is affected by any number of problems which can cause gaps in the service, not least on the Wimbledon branch where there is a long-standing problem of signals failing in the Southfields area every time it rains. The signals between Putney Bridge and Wimbledon are actually owned and operated by Network Rail rather than LUL, as South West Trains also use the line for empty train movements to/from their depot at Wimbledon Park.

So if Ms Greening could somehow persuade Network Rail to fix the signalling problems on the Wimbledon branch, maybe my faith in politicians could be restored! It would also save my blood pressure levels, because the nature of the signal failures means that the signal is showing a green aspect right until you are about to pass it, then it suddenly reverts back to red! This obviously stops the train rather abruptly, and causes stress to the driver and of course the passengers who are thrown down the train.

Anyhow, I wish you all a happy fortnight while I'm away! No trains for a fortnight (at least not London Underground trains anyway!).

By the way... Keep your eyes open for the refurbished D stock trains which should start running on the District Line on Tuesday 10th May. They will initially run only on the Olympia services, but they're worth having a look at! Digital displays inside and outside the carriages, a digital voice announcer to annoy you at every station, CCTV constantly recording every carriage... Very nice!


Blogger James said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

4:27 pm  
Blogger Jimbo said...

Hello - just wanted to say I enjoy the blog a lot, being a daily District Line traveller. Keep up the good work.

9:44 am  

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