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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Fri Oct 16, 2009 9:28 pm

Well, this has come as a surprise! This would mean less traffic going through Alton, and as somebody else posted, it would certainly enhance the magic of the Towers. Also, this would probably necessitate a fresh park entrance and an updated Towers Street, making the park even better.
 
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Meg
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Fri Oct 16, 2009 10:02 pm

Brilliant News! Would make my life much easier anyway.

I'm so used to travelling long distances and catching several different trains and buses to get to Alton Towers, and would happily continue that way, but this would make a huge difference to me and I'm sure, many others.
 
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Sat Oct 17, 2009 8:57 pm

I agree it would be magical way to arrive to Alton Towers. Alton Station does have two platforms so the capacity could be met. Though I have to disagree with your idea of reopening Alton station, its would transfer a large amount of noise into the village. (screaming excited school children). Plus it's a steep walk up the path to back of Oblivion.

My suggestion is to take the tracks through Alton (with a side platform used for Alton) along the valley bottom. Curve the tracks round and bring it up the side of the valley to a station (and engine shed) in front of the hotels.
 
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Mon Oct 19, 2009 2:12 pm

"Johno" wrote:
I'm just trying to work this one out, so apologies.

But are you saying that instead of driving to Alton Towers, you'd drive to Stoke railway station and get a train from there?

I'm presuming this as otherwise you'd be getting a muddle of different trains etc.


Stoke certainly doesn't have the space to accomodate large numbers of people parking to use the train. And changing trains isn't especially hard, Stoke is serviced by trains from Derby, Manchester, Crewe (the largest rail hub in the country and only 25 minutes away from Stoke), Birminghan, London and all the stops inbetween, and with trains taking just over an hour from London and arriving every 30 minutes, you're going to get to Towers much quicker then going anywhere near a car.

And this isn't just about getting cars off the road, a good service can mean far quicker journey times...something that will really help pull in crowds from further afield. By Providing ticket services that tie in entrance ticket with rail transport from local stations, Alton Towers can cut out the confusion and let people relax.

I'm more excited about the potential of this news then SW6!
 
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Mon Oct 19, 2009 4:02 pm

True the potential here is great especially for packages that they could put together!

Can a just clarify i presume they would build the station inside Alton Towers Resort? Or would it be in Alton Village?
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Mon Oct 19, 2009 4:39 pm

Well if they stick to the original track formation (causing least environmental impact) any station would be outside the park (the closest the track gets to the park is nearly a mile east of Alton, where it runs along the park's southern boundary and about 300-400 yards from the hotels. But with a project this big, who knows, perhaps it might be permitted to do something like AdamPanic suggested a few posts back.

---- Post Info Added ----

Just done this little map to show roughly what the current situation is:

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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Mon Oct 19, 2009 6:30 pm

This is amazing news. I had always wondered how far the track carried for at the Kingsley and Froghall end. I just did a quick scan on Google Earth and it turns out that the track is complete and usable to just outside Oakamoor so it's almost halfway there already. It's not far to Leek from the Cheddleton end either and in that case, the track's already there. I suspect that the issue that they might have is making the tunnel safe for regular use.

It's strange that I was driving past that section of track the other day and thinking that it would still be possible to run trains along it and now they've just announced that they'll reopen it. It's also great for the Churnet Valley Railway.

I hope that they'll run steam services as much as possible as it would make the AT experience much more magical than turning up in a clapped out DMU
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Mon Oct 19, 2009 6:56 pm

The Alton Towers Express. :D
Can't wait for this, I will be able to get to and from Alton Towers much more conveniently. :clap:
 
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Mon Oct 19, 2009 9:59 pm

Whilst I think this is a great piece of news, I fail to see how it will reduce the amount of traffic flow leading to Alton, people who have cars will still drive there as it's easier and those who ride the bus to Alton will still ride the bus. The Alton Train station is still about 15 min walk to Alton on roads with no paths, so inevitably they will have to provide a shuttle service from Alton Train station and back so as not to risk people being knocked down. I can't see this being of any real benefit to Alton or the traffic problems really.

Many of you who drive can get a Train to the very gates of the Pleasure Beach and you don't, you still drive, why? because you can. This won't ease Traffic people will still drive in their thousands.

Not to mention the cost incurred to Alton providing shuttles back and forth throughout the day also the sheer cost of putting on regular trains in the mornings and evening for the thousands of guests they won't get :P
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Mon Oct 19, 2009 10:00 pm

Could this not be a park & ride sort of service?
 
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Mon Oct 19, 2009 10:34 pm

maybe the monorail might get extended or rerouted?
 
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Mon Oct 19, 2009 11:53 pm

Having also looked at this on Google Maps, the track bed is nearly all still in its original form, and I dont think it would be massively difficult to rejoin until you follow it until Leek.

Then the trackbed stops, and you can see that its been built over, and has been said will become a logistical nightmare!

The station for Alton is immediately on the left as you cross the bridge in Alton. You can walk down it. It would be an interesting walk to see what needs to be done.

The large gate that is too the right of this right of the station on the otherside of the road is at the edge of Alton Towers property, and behind it is a road which leads up to the flag tower.

The building that is infront of this, the large barn looking building to the right of the bridge, also belongs to Alton Towers, and could be used as an information centre.

But there is nothing stopping guests crossing the road from the station, walking through what i can only describe as the "Hogwarts-Esque" gate entrance, up to the flag tower, or even running a mini bus/land trains.

This is still 4 years away, i have no idea on how the progress of this can be checked apart from someone dropping an email to the Churnet Valley Railway. Its going to open up lots of old stations and places for tourists.

And agreed, Stoke Station, at present cant handle extra traffic, but the area around Stoke On Trent Station, is rumored to become a pedestrianised area, and with Royal Mail over the road from the station on the way out this would be perfect for more parking.

Alas this is all very specific inftrastructure which is all years and years away, if it is like anything in the area, it will simply get tied up in red tape and never come to fruition, no matter how much of a fantastic project it sounds.

I say walk the track, see what its like
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Tue Oct 20, 2009 12:26 am

This is amazing news, no more having to leech off people for lifts to the park from stoke for meee! :P A 5 hour train journey can do with a little bit more! :P

I hope this goes through, I really do! [-o<
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Tue Oct 20, 2009 4:05 pm

This sounds awesome! I'm still gonna drive though!
 
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Tue Oct 20, 2009 9:20 pm

"Spike" wrote:

Many of you who drive can get a Train to the very gates of the Pleasure Beach and you don't, you still drive, why? because you can. This won't ease Traffic people will still drive in their thousands.


Indeed. Though if theres a choice between the relative ease of travelling by car, or spending ages getting forcibly intimate with chavs on a jam packed 2 carriage nodding donkey that frequent the Blackpool line then the car wins every time. :P

I have pondered about the link to the main line at Stoke station, and wonder what the implications are with a private heritage railway being allowed to run its heritage rolling stock on Network Rail owned track without special permissions such as those given to chartered excursion.

Theres also the question of available capacity at Stoke station, which has 3 platforms, and is already close to capacity, especially at peak times. Steam workings in this case could prove unviable as there would be very limited time in which to run the engine round to the other end of the carriages for the return journey.
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Tue Oct 20, 2009 11:11 pm

i think alton will want to have the station within a small walking distance of the park and to be honest
they are going for a disney style entrance with their future plans so it wouldnt suprise me or be good
sense to have the station in front of the new entrance.
 
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Wed Oct 21, 2009 11:14 am

Would anyone be kind enough to create a google map with a line painted on to show the route of the old line? I can find it from Alton to Denstone but then I get lost :D
 
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Wed Oct 21, 2009 2:01 pm

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The big problem, as you can see from the map, is that linking Stoke to Alton Towers via rail (without new build) involves a rather circuitous route, going south from Stoke, then north-east a long way via Milton, Leekbrook Junction towards Cauldon Low, then south-east via Cheddleton and Oakamoor to Alton Towers - the map exaggerates it a lot but you get the rough idea. Also the rail connection at Leekbrook was only from the west to the north, so either the train would have to run into Leek and reverse, or a new west to south spur would be needed... :shock:

Also a pity that Cheadle was only ever on a short branch line connected from the Uttoxeter-Stoke line.

EDIT: Alton is about a quarter of the way in from bottom and right in case you can't find it ;)

Edited Google Map below to make things clearer... :)

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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Wed Oct 21, 2009 6:58 pm

Thanks! I will have a more detailed look when I return from Rally GB on Monday!
 
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Re: Alton Towers To Have Rail Connection In 4 Years

Wed Oct 21, 2009 9:09 pm

Cheadle was once a fairly major station for moving coal and passengers. It was still all there when I was young, but got ripped up by the time I left school. Such a shame as it would really bring tourism and money into the local area.

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