The missing trains to Milton Keynes

A couple of days ago an article in a Midlands paper discussed how, if HS2 was built, there would be a large number of new services.

Quoting from the article

“From Wolverhampton, an extra service an hour would run to London, Coventry, Shrewsbury and Telford, while there would be five added trains running to Birmingham International and two services to Milton Keynes.

“There are currently no trains that run from Wolverhampton to Milton Keynes.”

It wasn’t hard to find out that this was somewhere between misleading and wrong.

There are direct services between Wolverhampton and Milton Keynes, the at 05:00, 05:24,05:45, 06:27 in the morning and 19:45, 20:47, 21:45 and 22:45 in the evening.

There are even direct services back: today you could catch the  00:28, 09:13, 14:13, 19:13, 20:13, 21:13, 21:34, 22:17 and 23:29, from Milton Keynes to Wolverhampton.

It took a little bit of searching to find where the paper had got it’s information.  But it seems to be from a draft document, Appendix 1,  discussed at a Centro committee meeting on Monday.

Obviously, you do have to be careful when looking at a draft document: it might still have been waiting for fact-checking.

However the paper had missed an important paragraph from the document

“Centro has developed a detailed timetable showing
exactly how local rail services could be improved by
using the capacity freed up by HS2, and by introducing
a series of matching infrastructure improvements.”

This Birmingham Post this morning also says that “an extra 52 trains an hour” would be able to run – the same number as the Express and Star article.

So once again,  supporters of HS2 are telling us about the wonderful service that could happen, if only we spent £33 billion of taxpayers money to build HS2.

And once again, the improvement relies on spending more money to make a number of other improvements to the railway system.


22 comments to “The missing trains to Milton Keynes”
  1. There’s little point in arguing with you,Gary,but here goes.For “salient facts”,read sweeping statements.You’re not getting to me in the least as your case has more holes in than a colander.(That’s what your granny used to use).So,I’ve “already agreed “?Really?How do you know? I happen to be a life-long rail supporter who would love to see them better run,with more “modal shift” from cars and lorries,but,in a free society and free market this cannot be forced.The push is coming from the EU who want to run their trains seamlessly across here.No doubt,ultimately,and long after I’m gone ,on a nationwide network…not just to the Midlands and the North.Do you hear much support from Cornwall or Wales?They’re all going to pay for it like the rest of us,whether they want it or not.”Cross-party support” was for HS,not HS2.There is a distinction.It’s totally unfair that the Consultation is focused on one route as a given.It may well happen.So might the end of the world. “From where I’m sitting the yes camp outweigh the no camp by some margin.”Where are you sitting,Gary,and where are the figures to substantiate this claim?Did you do a countrywide survey,or snatch figures out of the air?And,what is the margin?Rather than making wild assumptions,present us with some proof.Then you might be taken more seriously.

    • Why is it totally unfair that consultation is focused on one route as a given?? U seem to be forgetting that a number of options had already been looked at , and rejected for one reason or another. This particular route has had plenty of adjustments as well…..

      Free society and free market….hmmm let me see…..isnt that about having choice? And of course the freight industry doesnt have as much choice as it wants just now, due to the lack of capacity on our rail network.

  2. bring on hs2, having gone through hs1 and our motorway widning at the same time, we now have some decent travel for a while. Our existing rail lines carry commutor cattle trucks compared with our europeon neighbours and we are becoming the poor man of europe because of it.

    • Who is ranting? I m obviously getting to the stopHS2 campaigners as I m simply pointing out some salient facts which deep down you cant argue with……

      I ll re itereate ……HS2 is a proposed new rail line linking our major cities. The reason its needed is because the current network is nearly full. You simply cannot argue with that as you have already agreed with me. If we are to encourage people out of their cars, and trucks off the road, then its a no brainer…….investment in rail is needed…..simple as. And that is what is happening right now with a whole host of projects going on….

      HS2 has cross party support ( and opposition ) , but from where I sit, the yes camp outweigh the no camp by some margin. I ve no doubt it will be constructed, so I think you will simply have to get used to it Im afraid.

      • Let’s wait and see what comes out from the select committee enquiry.

        The ‘simple as’ logic outlined above is based on an assumption that growth will continue year on year into the future. Is that assumption valid?

        Where is the money going to come from to pay for it? John Redwood has said that ‘this is a luxury that we cannot afford’. It strikes me as like someone who’s lost their job, can’t pay the mortgage, but wants to go out and buy a new Ferrari. Sorry, but you can’t have it!

        • Is that assumption valid…?

          As I have stated , its in the national interest to encourage our daily travel onto rail, and it has been well proven over the last 10 years that where investment has been made, people will make that switch. Passenger numbers are now at a record high, I myself use rail a lot more than I used to and have reduced car usage, so its worked for me. To give you an example, I made a round trip one day last week of 90 miles – the ticket cost me £13.50. The cost in petrol alone had I driven would have been £18!! Petrol price rises show no signs of slowing down…..this is an increasing problem for many. More people are now very aware of our enviromental responsibilities, and would use public transport as a viable alternative.

          I think its fair to say that the assumption is valid……

          John Redwood lol!!!!!! The same John Redwood who got into an arguement with the Countryside Council for Wales after cutting its grant by 16%…..and also returning millions of pounds of Welsh block grant money to the treasury unspent. One of the most ridiculed politicians of our recent history !!!

  3. Please do not stop using the site D Owen. Gary can be a pain but he does demonstrate how little the pro camp have in their argument

    • How little I have in the arguement for the pro camp?? Hmmm let me see……

      1 – The main North to South rail arteries are very nearly at capacity ( u guys have already agreed with me on this). We need a new state of the art line to address the capacity issues.

      2 – Rail travel is percieved as less enviromentally damaging than air or car.

      3 – Passenger numbers have risen, and are continuing to rise, on the back of record levels of investment in our infrastructure.

      4 – There is a demand for rail freight services – this in turn will take thousands of HGVs off our roads if there was a significant increase in the capacity allowed for freight.

      5 – The population of the UK is expected to increase to about 70 million in the next 10-15 years. We need to invest in UK infrastructure to accomodate this.

      6 – Investment in transport is seen as a catalyst for economic activity.

      7 – HS2 is planned to go through some of the UKs countryside which is classed as AONB. Anything planned for these areas has to be shown to be sympathetic to that area. HS2 has shown that as far as I m concerned.

      8 – I have yet to see anything from the stopHS2 camp to persuade me that you guys have a point……as I have stated before, I m actually doing an educational programme for which this subject may well form a dissertation, and I have to admit that the stopHS2 campaign comes across as very weak, which to be fair, is not unusual. You offer statements which you cant back up with fact….I have found you guys out more than a few times now, Imagine what it would be like when you are faced with a hard hitting politician. The reality is that if the bill is passed on the floor of the house ( and from what I ve seen so far its highly likely to be ) , then there is nothing you can do about it. Of course anyone directly affected will receive appropiate compensation.

      Now I have asked you guys a number of questions in the past, none of which have actually been answered. What chance have you got if you cant actually state your case on an anonymous internet blog?? Mr Owen in particular still seems to be smarting after having to apologise for making discourteous remarks the other week ….and incurring the wrath of the moderator. So please dont try and blame me for you deciding not to use the site.

      • I suspect that the bill could well be passed, but I will be very surprised if HS2 ever gets built. The country is suffering from crushing levels of debt, and despite what the government tells us, it’s not going to improve any time soon. When the time comes for the treasury to actually start writing cheques there will be a panic and spending priorities will be challenged.

        The time of plenty is coming to an end. Some schools of thought are talking about the end of growth. We are entering a time of depleted resources. The cost of energy and raw materials is going to keep on going up and up and up. The £17billion at 2009 prices will be nowhere near enough if construction actually starts in 2016.

        All these extra trains would all need extra electrical power to run on. No one has said where this is going to come from, or even where we’ll get enough to keep the lights on ten years from now. It’s funny how governments can be so sure about the future demand for rail travel but can’t predict the future price of electricity.

        And when an ever increasing proportion of household income is being spent on food and heating, travel will become an expensive luxury. Traffic jams on the M6 will be a thing of the past and there will be loads of unused capacity on the WCML. And as more and more potholes get left unrepaired, people will need sturdy bicycles to get around and an ultra high speed train will become a fantasy.

        HS2 is a folly of monumental proportions, but it probably won’t be stopped until the next parliament. By then £750m will have been needlessly spent – but at least Alison Munro will have hung onto her £200k pa job for a few years.

  4. Luke – welcome to the wonderful world that is “Gary”! I thankfully live in a world which is mercifully free of animosity and rudeness. I found his posts so distasteful that I have stopped using the site.

  5. Dear me….these articles are just so poor, its beginning to look like clutching at straws time.

    Penny…..u seem to be forgetting that the current network has significant investment planned as well without HS2. Network Rail ( who are the current custodians of the infrastructure ) have 100s of projects planned for CP4 and CP5. These generate improvements of their own accord – do the research and you will find loads of info about them.

      • I suspect he is a “plant” by Mr Hammond. They do seem to have rather a lot in common in terms of courtesy and opinions!

        I’ve already told him what I think, and have promised myself not to respond to his stirring of the pot I do however wish you well in your efforts to oust him. I’ve already asked the moderator if he can’t put his case without recourse to personal comments then perhaps the site should have some rules of conduct.

        • I ve already questioned Penny about the lack of T&Cs on here…..

          Whats up Luke? Getting fed up of being found out ??? I see you couldnt tell me the link you were using to try and answer the consultation questions. Nobody else seems to have an issue with it??

          • Finmere – I love it – thats class.

            Gary – I’ve looked all over this site and lots of people have put up good evidence against your arguments – I don’t agree with your comments at all.

            Come on then – what specifically has NOT been answered by you. List it and then perhaps we can all have another go at it. (if of course we are so poor at coming back to you). You may consider however that some people just merely give up because your arguements are so one sided and get personal.

            Clearly you are not who you say you are – though a mighty good cover I must add.

            • Clearly you are not who you say you are – though a mighty good cover I must add

              Lol at you people! I got accused on this site of being some government spook as well. A common Stop HS2 tactic it seems. Anyone disagreeing with you must be an agent for the government. I know it’s hard to swallow, but there really are ordinary members of the public who genuinely support HS2 and think you people are being a tad selfish in your opposition to it.

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