Contents Listing - Articles & Features in this issue
THE HIGHLIGHTS THAT STICK - 'Toram Beg' ONE FOGGY NIGHT - 'Midland' SELF-DRIVE HIRE ON BRITISH RAILWAYS - A. A. Vickers A HISTORY OF G.W.R. COACHING STOCK 1923-1947 - 2 - M. L. I. Harris THIS MONTH'S CENTENARIES - Spencer Gilks LUXEMBOURG JOURNEY - 2 - C. Riley RAILFAN RAILTOURS THE MclNTOSH EIGHT-COUPLED ENGINES AND MOGULS OF THE CALEDONIAN RAILWAY - A. G. Ounbar THE VANISHING WESTERN BRANCHES HALF-A-CENTURY OF TRAIN TRAVEL - Cecil Allen CUMBERLAND REVIVAL - THE FIRST TWO YEARS OF PRESERVATION AT RAVENGLASS - A. R. Williams LIGHT RAILWAY NOTES - W. I K. Dories LETTERS BOOK REVIEWS CLUB NOTES RAILFANS REGISTER FRONT COYER: Stanier Pacific No. 462.48 City of Leeds restarts the 11.5 a.m. Swansea-Manchester out of Shrewsbury on July 6, 1962.
THE B.T.C.'s announcement that Pullman activities on B.R. are to be expanded leads us to hope for more facilities of the type offered in the "Midland Pullman"a€great comfort, really good service and high-quality meals and refreshments on services where they are most likely to receive the patronage of those willing to pay for them. and thus to enhance the prestige and revenue-earning capabilities of crack a€" and notably crack businessa€"expresses. Pullman management consistently succeeds in attaining the almost uniformly impeccable standard of service expected by such clientele. We say ""management"", since the ""Midland Pullman"" and certain other Pullman trains are staffed by employees of British Transport Hotels, under Pullman Car Co. management. Whilst the ""Midland Pullman"", linking the largest conurbations and traffic catchment areas in England, probably takes the cream of this traffic, there is plenty of scope for more all-Pullman trains on predominantly business services. The biggest problem seems to be to attain a satisfactory stock utilisation at mid-day, between the well-loaded morning and evening runs. The difficulties in finding traffic at mid-day for the ""Midland Pullman"" on its intermediate London-Nottingham return trip, and for the similar mid-day ""Bristol Pullman"", ""Birmingham Pullman"" and ""Master Cutler"" return trips from London, are well known (although on its up early afternoon trip from Sheffield as an un-named train the ""Master Cutler"" set is reported to load reasonably well). Stock of Pullman trains with longer journeys, such as the ""Tees-Tyne Pullman"", the ""Yorkshire Pullman"" and the ""South Wales Pullman"", with only one out-and-home trip daily, has a poor utilisation; in this connection, it is odd that the S.R., which gets three return trips daily out of the ""Brighton Belle"", allots only one to the ""Bournemouth Belle"". One must admit that it is difficult to see how the ""Golden Arrow"" cars could be given extra duties, except as an early morning up and early afternoon down local service for Folkestone and Dovera€"a sort of revival of the S.E.C. ""American Car"" train; 'but many consider that such interlopers in an interval service, including the ""Brighton Belle"" (which is not popular with the commuters who have to use it in default of an ordinary fast train at the hour desired) are out of place in the S.R.'s S.E. and Central Divisions. Indeed, the ""Golden Arrow"" is probably B.R.'s all-Pullman train with the least future. However, more work surely could be found for the ""Bournemouth Belle"". L'mil such time as the S.R.'s S.W. Division services are re-cast after electrification and introduction of electro-diesel locomotives, the ""Bournemouth Belle"" might work up from Bournemouth at about 8 a.m., make its return trip from Waterloo to Bournemouth and back a little earliera€"but at times suiting Southampton's need of an up afternoon business traina€"and return from Waterloo at about 7 p.m. It should be given Bournemouth Central-Waterloo timings of not more than 2hr (with the Southampton stop) so as to equal or excel the fastest non-Pullman expresses. Assuming that the B.T.C. intends to build more Pullman vehicles, and recollecting the pattern of operation in the Eastern (G.N. Line) and N.E. Regions, one feels that not only the ""West Riding"" and ""White Rose"", but also the ""Heart of Midlothian"" and both ""Talisman"" services could be made all-Pullman. There might be a certain sales resistance to Pullman supplements on the part of non-business travellers and the proportion of first class accommodation would have to be allotted in the light of this and other considerations, including the business traffic from and to intermediate stops, e.g. Newcastle- Edinburgh. No doubt this would create commercial complexities as to reservations, but after all the ""Queen of Scots"" seems to get along happily with London-Leeds and Leeds-Glasgow clienteles.
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