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Everything posted by Pegpilot

  1. Thanks for the clarification, Hermit. As an aside, I spent some time working on the Tube with a former District Line train maintenance manager (who, before that, was in the Navy). He spoke wistfully about his time out in the Far East. "What, Hong Kong ?" said I, rising to the bait. "No", he retorted. "Upminster !"
  2. Blimey, I'm feeling old. I remember D Stock being introduced on the District Line when I arrived in London in 1979. Vivarail, the mob that bought many of the withdrawn D Stock units are also creating diesel variants for use on unelectrified branch lines. Of course the D Stock IOW trains follow in a line of ex-LUL stock. They will replace ex Bakerloo 38 stock, which in turn ousted Standard Stock if I recall correctly. The big change this time is that the new units are former Surface Stock gauge rather than Tube Stuck gauge, so they need more space to fit through tunnels and under bridges. I
  3. As I recall, Ed, the train rolled in to Blackpool mid afternoon Saturday and left for home about 11pm, returning overnight. Time enough for a visit to the Pleasure Beach and a couple of pints
  4. And as a kid in the mid to late 70s I was a member of BR Southern Region's Pleasure Seeker club - in retrospect it sounds not a little sinister ! In those days BR had lots of spare rolling stock lying around at weekends and they used to deploy some of it on regional charters to some pretty exotic (to me) day trip destinations (Plymouth, York, Birmingham, Lake District, Blackpool), all from Broadstairs in Kent spring to mind. The idea being to generate a few bob from otherwise temporarily redundant vehicles. These days there's very little spare stock knocking about on Saturdays, and in any ca
  5. Hi Adam. The system we put in on the Tube after Moorgate had a number of track circuits of carefully calculated length before each signal approaching a terminus. If the train reached the next signal before a defined occupancy time for that track section then the signal would fail to clear and the train would be "tripped" to an Emergency Brake actuation at the following signal (we called it Approach Control). So typically the speed would be confirmed as under 20 mph, then 15 at the next, then 10, then 5, and then there would be a fixed trainstop to halt the train if it went beyond its intend
  6. Whatever, Gentlemen, but I think we can all agree that the driver was only saved by a Fluke. (Joke pinched from elsewhere, so I can't claim the blame or, indeed, the credit)
  7. When I worked on the Jubilee Line engineering team, some of my colleagues managed to slam a train into the buffers in Stratford depot. They were testing some traction control software modifications but forgot to disengage the motors from the control system before testing the "proceed" command through the plugged-in laptop. The train naively did what it was asked without question and a couple of seconds later there was a very loud graunching noise and a spectacular cloud of dust from the end of the line. Back to the subject at hand, my spies tell me that the signalling system in Rotterdam wou
  8. Blimey. As a retired Metro careerist I'm very interested to find out what the heck happened. But it's clear that it overshot the arrestor on a parking "headshunt" beyond the terminus. Questions I ponder are whether the signalling should automatically slow trains approaching the arrestor here (as we installed on the tube after Moorgate in 1975) and whether leaf mulch on the rails may have impeded brake performance given we're in the peak of the leaf fall season and we have strong winds bringing the lelaves down as well. But if the driver was pondering the mass of his train, maybe he was proc
  9. Pegpilot


    Thanks David - clear enough ! I could live with a 2000 ft Danger Area ceiling - as a glider pilot, if I'm down at 2000 ft on a cross country flight then I'm usually looking for fields to land in ! There's a bunch of very good glider pilots in the Midlands that normally try for a day trip to St Catherine's Point and back, but I'm not good enough/brave enough to try it myself. They normally route over Portsmouth to avoid Southampton's airspace. What is annoying though is them blocking out that corridor every working day for five straight days.
  10. Pegpilot


    Looking at the UK South airspace chart, I see it's bimbling across the Solent in uncontrolled airspace. It would be interesting to know how they practice the principles of "see and avoid" with no pilot on board unless they've issued a NOTAM for a Restricted Area (Temporary) or similar to keep hobby pilots like me out. I smell a RA(T) ! I was lucky enough to cross the Solent in a helicopter as a passenger at 2000 feet and the views across Southampton were stunning.
  11. As I'm bored, I might as well relate a trip on FE2 in the late 60s from Dover in the height of summer. The lime green paintwork attracted 10 million ladybirds and our brief foray onto the open deck as we left Dover was swiftly abandoned...
  12. Meanwhile P&O's owners, the Dubai Royal Family have altruistically chosen this week to donate 60 tonnes of PPE supplies to the NHS. Completely unconnected to the state aid issue, no doubt.
  13. Entirely understandable that your long list of insurance companies should baulk at taking on future COVID risk, but this reaction may effectively kill some of the more exotic market sectors where demonstrable travel insurance is a pre-condition to joining a cruise. I had to provide details of my cover before I went to the Antarctic three years ago. One other thought - many of the same companies also flog car insurance. The historic claims rate for the UK is about £25m a (2016 data) day, so if we suppose that traffic levels have fallen by three quarters (as has been reported) then they are c
  14. Coming back to the Cesme service, my understanding was that the destruction of Yugoslavia's infrastructure in the civil war in the 90s made the car ferry an attractive proposition for Turkish Gastarbeiter returning home from western Europe. The restoration of the road infrastructure through the Balkans spelt the end for the service. Oh, and no one's mentioned the service from Barcelona to Civitavecchia - that's 24 hours plus, isn't it ?
  15. Similar rebooking policy issued by Hurtigruten. I also notice that today's intended visit by Fridtjof Nansen to Dublin has been cancelled. And next week's call in Guernsey is also off, although they haven't told me about the latter yet and I'm supposed to be on board. Was hoping for one last hurrah before Armageddon but hey ho !
  16. Well I'm off on Hurtigruten's new vessel the Nansen in a couple of weeks' time and have received a briefing note on Corona. They're refusing to board anyone who's been to China or HK in the last 2 weeks or anyone who has had contact with a Corona-infected person, and they reserve the right to conduct temperature checks on any intending guests. No doubt that note will need to be amended between now and boarding. Not sure if Hurty are applying these conditions to their Norway coastal service though. FWIW the trip is from Portsmouth and goes via Dartmouth, Guernsey, Scilly Isles, Ostend and
  17. Agreed. Did it a few years ago and had a great time. Although you are somewhat dumped out in the sticks in Oslo on arrival compared to DFDS and Stena. A tip if you have a spare day is to do the sightseeing boat trip from Kiel through the lock gates up the canal to Rendsburg. From there you can stay on board and go back, although it's a bit of a long day, or you can save a couple of hours by taking the train back. The trip is on board a vintage paddler and is a great favourite with German pensioners who appreciate the morning coffee and cake on departure and a spot of lunch before you get to
  18. The parallels with Scandlines' Berlin and Copenhagen back in 2012 are quite striking. Didn't that bring down the shipyard when Scandlines rejected the vessels on a deadweight issue ? Seem to remember that Scandlines ended up getting the ferries anyway, presumably cut-price from the shipyard's creditors ?
  19. Fair points CVA. It was interesting that my Grandfather fell in love with Greece, always promised my Grandmother that they would go and visit his old haunts, but he could never summon up the courage to face up to those historic demons (yes, I'm not denying the atrocities) and actually go back. Anyway, I will definitely fulfil a promise to myself next year and visit the beaches in Normandy. Having previously visited German coastal positions in Hirthsals, Frederikshavn and Jersey, I don't underestimate the scale of the task we faced at all
  20. I suppose the news channels will move swiftly on after today, which is a shame. They probably won't acknowledge the 6 weeks of hard fighting in Normandy after D-Day as we fought to take Caen - which was initially a Day 1 objective. If you research Operation Epsom and Goodwood you will see how doggedly the Germans fought and how horrendous our losses were. And then a lightning dash through France and another bloody winter on the German border as the Germans rallied once more. Incidentally, whilst this was going on my German maternal Grandfather was in his 40's, commissioned in the Luftwaffe
  21. Thanks Paully. A shame really. The AAIB has a global reputation for the thoroughness of its work and I presume that the MAIB is similarly well respected Still, I'm sure that the Cypriot authorities would investigate with the same attention to detail...
  22. I presume that in future the MAIB would have no authority to investigate such an incident but involving a Cypriot-registered vessel in French waters ?
  23. I must profess to a degree of confusion about all this. I understand that if port turnround times for vessels go up then you need more ships to maintain a given route capacity. But at what stage does the number of berths become the determinant of capacity rather than fleet size I(my history has involved line capacity analysis for metro railways). At the moment Dover has about 55 daily arrival/departure pairs spread over, I think, 7 linkspans, suggesting an average timetabled linkspan utilisation of about 8 per berth per day or every three hours, apparently comfortable if you're turning them
  24. It's such a ruddy awful joke that I'm happy for you to take the blame, CB !
  25. Well if FDFDS is coming to the party, what odds on the "No-Deal Seaways"..... I'll get me coat
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