Saturday 22 February 2020

Embankment Slip near Milford, from 18th February 2020

As of 22nd February, intend to cover the loco hauled civil engineering and aggregates trains separately next week, assuming some resumption of this traffic.

Embankment slippage on Up line (north side, trains running Salisbury to Romsey). Location is to the east of Milford Junction, for which this is a map from 1900, which is marked 'Liable to Flooding'. The embankment will date from 1847 when the railway was opened.

Last trains recorded passing on 18th were Up 2R50 13:50 Salisbury - Romsey at about 13:55 and Down 2S35 13:07 Romsey to Salisbury at about 14:12.

Snapshot of Traksy at 09:45, Wednesday 19th. No knowledge of why 'BLOK' on Chandler's Ford line, subsequently removed.

No locomotive hauled trains between Salisbury and Romsey after the event, although some resumed on Saturday 22nd, after monitoring equipment was installed by Network Rail. On 18th - 19th, until the line re-opened partially, FGW ran a Romsey - Portsmouth shuttle.

On Wednesday 19th only 1 dmu train was operated per hour in each direction 10:00 - 19:00 by FGW, calling at Dean and Dunbridge. Single track working between East Grimstead crossover and Laverstock.

However this ceased, the line is effectively closed for public transport, it seems that this was an operating company decision. The remaining GWR service from Portsmouth to Romsey is running towards 90 minute intervals, rather than the established timetable.

Duration expected to be 2 months, but assessment of the slip cannot be started until floodwater is drained from the adjacent field.

A network of buses have replaced the trains. As notified in a Network Rail press release "South Western Railway are hoping to run a limited service from Monday 24 February on the ‘Romsey loop’. One train an hour during the peak and one train every 2 hours in off-peak are expected to run in both directions from Romsey to Romsey via Eastleigh and Southampton."

From SWR (22nd Feb):

What's Going OnDue to a landslip between Romsey and Salisbury all lines are blocked. Train services running through these stations will be cancelled, delayed or revised. Disruption is expected until the end of the day on 31/03/20.
What We're Doing About It
Engineers have confirmed there is significant damage to the embankment, with substantial repair work needed. It is expected that it will take up to two months to fully repair the railway. We are not currently able to run trains on this route.
The following service will be operating from the affected stations:
Dean - No trains will be serving this station but there will be a half hourly bus serviceMottisfont & 
Dunbridge - no trains will be serving this station but there will be a half hourly bus service
Romsey - An hourly GWR train service towards Southampton / Portsmouth. A half hourly bus service to Salisbury
Redbridge - A limited rail service but there will be a half hourly bus service
Millbrook - A limited rail service but there will be a half hourly bus service
Swaythling - A limited rail service but there will be a half hourly bus service
St Denys - A limited rail service but there will be a half hourly bus service
Chandlers Ford - No trains will be serving this station but there will be a half hourly bus service
We have arranged replacement buses to run on the following routes:
Salisbury - Southampton in both directions via Redbridge and Millbrook
Romsey - Southampton in both directions via Chandlers Ford and Eastleigh
Please note the following stations where buses will not pick up from the station:
Romsey station - pick up from the  bus stops on the A3057
Redbridge - pick up from the bus stops by the Shell garage
Great Western Railway are running their services between Salisbury and Cardiff Central and also between Portsmouth Harbour and Romsey. Your South Western ticket will be accepted on Great Western services via any reasonable route. Please see their publicity for details.

Network Rail Wessex tweets: one two three & press release (21st)

Turning to the regular locomotive hauled workings:

Departmental (GBRf):

The Westbury - Eastleigh - Westbury  (typically 59003) -  59003 is at Westbury, 6O39 was cancelled from 19th - 21st.

VSTP 0Oxx 12:15 Westbury Up T.C. to Eastleigh East Yard operated via Basingstoke on 19th, but this was not a GBRf working, potentially Colas (66847, 66850 and 70806 all moved Westbury - Eastleigh around this time)

70805 with the HOBC - VSTP 6X35 07:59 Westbury Down T.C. to Eastleigh East Yard ran on 21st (Colas), via Swindon and Reading, with a return move 6Z36 13:58 Eastleigh East Yard to Westbury Down T.C., via Reading, Swindon and a reversal at Bath.

Aggregates (Freightliner): 

Botley - 04:32 Botley - Merehead ran on 18th, cancelled from 19th
Chichester - 59102 7V07 12:41 Chichester - Merehead on 18th got to Southampton, then sent to Up Yard ran forward via Reading and Swindon 7Z07 11:34 Up Yard to Merehead on 21st; Q schedule, cancelled from 19th
Eastleigh - cancelled from 18th
Fareham - normal cycle on 18th, cancelled from 19th
Southampton Up Yard - Q schedule, did not run

Overall, awaiting resumption. It seems some amount of planning will be required to recover the aggregates schedule, potentially running T+T via Basingstoke, although line capacity is said to be an issue. This could be clearer next week.


Based upon WTT and what has been noted running recently, where further VAR trains have been excluded, this list appears to be the active timetabled services:

4M58 09:25 Maritime - Garston - operated via Eastleigh from 19th
4V54 10:14 FO Maritime - Avonmouth - operated via Eastleigh from 21st
4M65 13:46 Maritime - Lawley Street - 66605 operated the second last down train to pass on 18th - operated via Eastleigh from 19th
4O57 13:29 Wentloog - Maritime - diverted from Bathampton on 18th (assume via Swindon and Reading), similarly on 19th, then along the Badminton Line from 20th

Intermodals all appear to be running via Eastleigh on normal days.

On 22nd February, fifteen intermodal trains were worked through the single line section between 01:30 and 15:00.

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