Print Publication No.: 349069/00070
January, 1999 Issue
No. 178 (Vol. 16 No. 1)
by Jack McLean
In The Times No 47 which appeared February, 1988, I described what I saw as the problems which might have beset No 41, the 12.45 Rockhampton - Yaamba Motor Pass in 1943. I graphed the timings in the working timetable to show that if everything was running, and on time, the Motor Pass would not have been able to get to Yaamba to start back as the 3.10pm Up, No 68.
My concern was unwarranted because it would have been decidedly unusual if the long distance trains in the Rockhampton area in 1943 were running anything like on time, due to the wartime traffic volume. For instance, I knew I would have to take two days leave instead of one to go to Rockhampton and get back to Enoggera without offending Sand Shoe Joe who would have been delighted to charge me with being absent without leave.
On Tuesday 10 August, 1943, I travelled on No 241 which left Brisbane
on time but was 177 minutes late arriving at Rockhampton. At Port Curtis
Junction I was most disturbed to see an Up passenger train on the double
line. Was this No 268 the Sunshine Express running on time? Fortunately
it wasn’t, and I was in no danger of being AWL. On arrival at Rockhampton
I hurried to the Stationmaster’s Office where I was relieved to find that
the train we had crossed at Port Curtis Junction was an extra train referred
to I think as 2nd 268, leaving Rockhampton on the timing of No 268 which
was still several hours away. I was able to walk as far as Glenmore Junction
while waiting for it.
Once aboard 268 I made myself comfortable in a Pullman type sleeping
car, tossing my sleeping bag onto the pull-down berth. The train left Rockhampton
at 7.08pm instead of 1.30pm, 288 minutes late, and arrived at Brisbane
Roma Street at 1.48pm instead of 6.20am, 448 minutes late.
Maybe it was a Brisbane timetable compiler who told me they were often able to produce a fresh schedule for No 268, run off copies for all stations as far as Gympie (106 miles) and distribute them by a down train. Many years later I found this copy of Train Notice No 360 (shown on the front cover) among my war souvenirs. It was issued in February 1943 for an event such as I have described. It is not my most favourite timetable but it does remind me of those times which were alternately exciting and boring.
Dear members and friends,
1. What are our old timetables worth?: Have you ever thought
about selling or auctioning off some of your old timetables, or maybe purchasing
some to add to your collection, and not known what the market is currently
paying for them? Well here is something that may help to answer that question.
I have prepared the following simple tabulation based on a selection of
111 timetables sold at the last AATTC Auction (No. 13 which closed 19 Nov
1998). It is not an exhaustive survey as it is only intended to give you
a "feel" for the current market. The figures in the table are expressed
in percentage terms and are based on the actual prices the buyers paid.
|Decade t/t issued||1980's||1970's||1960's||1950's||1940's||1930's & 20's|
Of the 111 timetables surveyed from the last auction the above tabulation shows that:
a) The older a timetable the higher the amount that is usually paid for it.
b) The majority of timetables from the 1980’s sold for $2 or less.
c) The majority of timetables from the 1970’s sold for $4 or less with nearly half selling for $2 or less.
d) The majority of timetables from the 1960’s sold for $4 or less with nearly a third selling for $2 or less.
e) The majority of timetables from the 1950’s sold for $19 or less with half selling for $9 or less.
f) The majority of timetables from the 1940’s, 1930’s & 1920’s sold for $29 or less.
* Are in a superior physical condition
1950’s timetable. In other words the supply & demand factor does its thing.
I hope the above figures are helpful. What it tells me is that if you
want to invest to make money then buying shares or property is likely to
give a better return than buying and selling timetables. In other words
collecting timetables appears to be very much for love and not for money.
2. Will there be any working timetables to collect in the future?: It appears Victoria may no longer issue printed copies of their freight and country Working Timetables (or whatever the latest name is that they are using for them). This follows on the heels of Queensland who have not issued any freight or country Working Timetables since 1997. I have also heard rumours that N.S.W. are considering discontinuing the issuing of their freight and country working timetables in the next couple of years. The information that used to appear in the Working Timetables is now being placed on internal data bases that employees look at when needed.
The problem for timetable collectors is that this demise of printed
freight and country working timetables means that there will no longer
be any hard copies available of how freight trains used to run in 1999
or 2000 or 2001, etc. I believe that we as collectors have not adequately
addressed this issue and unless we do so now we are going to end up losing
a lot of our timetabling history.
Yours in the cause of happy timetable collecting,
Editor, The Times.
The Manitou and Pike’s Peak Railway Co. is the world’s highest cog railway. It was built as a tourist attraction to carry passengers from the resort of Manitou Springs, Colorado to the summit of Pike’s Peak which soars to 14,110 feet. The railway climbs over 7,500 feet once it leaves Manitou Springs which requires gradients of up to 1 in 4.
A company was formed and construction commenced in 1889. Although the track was completed in October, 1890, services operated only to the Halfway House Hotel until June, 1891 when running to the Peak commenced. Service was provided by six steam locomotives pushing carriages up the mountain. One each of these locos and carriages have been preserved and make occasional trips to intermediate locations.
The railway operated virtually unchanged until the depression years of the 1930’s when an alternative vehicle was sought to convey the fewer passengers offering in the slower season. This resulted in production of No. 7 which was a petrol driven railcar capable of carrying 23 passengers. It was introduced in 16/6/38 and proved to be a great success.
So great was the success of No. 7 that Nos. 8,9 10, 11 and 12 soon followed.
These were not actually railcars but were diesel-electric locomotives that
were paired up with carriages capable of seating 52 passengers. This fleet
carried the main operational requirements of the railway through to the
With an ageing fleet, new equipment was sought in the early 1960’s.
A Swiss company was approached and in 1964 Nos. 14 and 15 arrived at Manitou
Springs. These were diesel-electric railcars and their success resulted
in two identical units being ordered. Nos. 16 and 17 were soon clawing
their way up and down Pike’s Peak.
Twelve years later Manitou and Pikes Peak Railway Co. were in a position to expand once again. Two large diesel-hydraulic articulated railcars were ordered, once again from Switzerland. These units were capable of seating 200 passengers. To coincide with the introduction of these units, trackwork was upgraded to allow trains to cross at intermediate points along the line. This dramatically changed the method of operation on the railway. Instead of running the required amount of railcars in convoy (limited to three return trips per day), the frequency of trips could be reduced. With the new arrangements an 80 minute headway could be employed. Two more articulated units, Nos. 24 and 25, were delivered in the mid 1980’s and have enhanced the carrying capacity of the line to cope with peak (pardon the pun!) loading.
Below is a collection of Working Timetables (called Employees’ Time
Tables [E.T.T.] in USA) for the Manitou and Pike’s Peak Railway, Interestingly
the August 1, 1951 E.T.T. shows times for both Steam and Electric (diesel-electric).
Engine requirements and a more leisurely travel rate of the steam locomotive
obviously added to the journey time.
By January 1 1959 it appears steam had been replaced but the railcar
schedule had eased by five minutes in both directions. Were the railcars
wearing out or were the initial times a little ambitious?
With the introduction of the Swiss built railcars, the January 1, 1971
E.T.T. shows a minor drop in the running time.
With the articulated railcars and track upgrade the January 1, 1976
E.T.T. dramatically increases the frequency of trains. When comparing the
E.T.T. with current brochures, it appears that this is still a current
E.T.T. One interesting aspect of this operation is that passengers must
return on the same train with no layover at Summit permitted. This is probably
to reduce the chance of overcrowding on the afternoon return trips.
A map of the line and district is shown below. The information from
which this article has been prepared was the result of a letter requesting
timetable information. Thankyou to the staff at Manitou and Pike’s Peak
by Graham Duffin
Following is a checklist of all known issues of system wide public timetables
since the mid 1950’s of the Victorian Railways and their successors Vic
Rail and V/Line. I know this list is incomplete however I believe it is
better that we publish what we know and build on it from there. I was able
to visit the Australian Railway Historical Society library in Brisbane
to obtain much of this information. I was also able to fill in some of
the gaps by checking the collection of timetables owned by Jack McLean.
If you find any omissions or errors please advise me as I would like to
list them in The Times so all of us will have access to an as accurate
list as possible. I would also like to publish lists of Victorian timetables
issued prior to the mid-1950’s and since the late 1980’s if someone could
compile such lists and send them to me for publication.
VICTORIAN COUNTRY TIMETABLES – Fold over style:
VICTORIAN COUNTRY TIMETABLES – Small Book Style:
2-11-1959 Summer Edition 5-5-1969 Winter Issue
2-5-1960 Winter Edition 3-11-1969 Summer Issue
7-11-1960 Summer Edition 4-5-1970 Winter Issue
1-5-1961 Winter Edition 16-11-1970 Summer Issue
17-7-1961 Winter Edition 28-6-1971 Winter Issue
6-11-1961 Summer Edition 1-11-1971 Summer Issue
16-4-1962 Winter Edition (Syd-Melb Std Gauge) 24-7-1972 Winter Issue
5-11-1962 Summer Edition 27-11-1972 Summer Issue
6-5-1963 Winter Edition 1-7-1973 Winter Issue
4-8-1963 Winter Edition 9-12-1973 Summer Issue
4-11-1963 Summer Issue 6-5-1974 Winter Issue
4-5-1964 Winter Issue 4-11-1974 Summer Issue
2-11-1964 Summer Issue 26-5-1975 Winter Edition
3-5-1965 Winter Issue 10-11-1975 Summer Edition
14-2-1966 Summer Issue (Decimal Currency) 24-5-1976 Winter Edition
2-5-1966 Winter Issue 8-11-1976 Summer Edition
7-11-1966 Summer Issue 9-5-1977 Winter Edition
1-5-1967 Winter Issue 7-11-1977 Summer Edition
6-11-1967 Summer Issue 5-6-1978 Winter Edition
6-5-1968 Winter Issue 13-11-1978 Vic Rail - Summer
1-12-1968 Summer Issue 11-6-1979 Vic Rail - Winter
VICTORIAN COUNTRY TIMETABLES – A5 Book Style:
November 1979 Summer 79/80 21-8-1983 V/Line
30-6-1980 Cover shows July 1980 20-5-1984 V/Line
February 1981 14-4-1985 V/Line
Undated Spring 1981 27-10-1985 V/Line
31-10-1982 Summer 82/83
VICTORIAN COUNTRY TIMETABLES – Small Narrow Book Style:
VICTORIAN SUBURBAN SYSTEM TIMETABLE BOOK
February 1980 This is the only postwar system wide suburban public timetable book that has been
Re Letters to the Editor Item 2 (The Times No. 177, December 1998 p14) regarding the issue raised by Len Regan.
The "Newcastle Flyer" may take 2 hours 24 minutes to run from Newcastle to Sydney at present. However in 1948 it ran non stop from Newcastle to Sydney. Today it also stops at Hamilton 2 minutes, Broadmeadow 2 minutes, Cardiff 2 minutes, Fassifern 2 minutes, Morisset 2 minutes, Gosford 2 minutes (but loses more than that as 360 passengers get on), Hornsby 2 minutes (with up to 150-200 alighting and Strathfield 2 minutes. The loading for the steam hauled service in 1948 would have been about 250.
Today the loading is an 8 car double deck Interurban capable of carrying 900 passengers seated and many more standing. The middle cars have standees from Gosford to Hornsby. If it ran non-stop Newcastle to Sydney it could run a 2 hours 7 minute table or even faster if recovery time was cut out in several places and easily do it in 2 hours or less.
With up to 4 times the number of passengers these days, many of them pensioners who take their time getting on and off, the train does well to do it in the time allowed. I might add that there is recovery time in the timetable which might not have existed in 1948.
I might add that in 1948 very few people would have commuted daily from Newcastle to Sydney. Today probably 70% of the train passengers are workers. There was also no cheap Pensioner Excursion fares which are $3 return from Newcastle to Sydney or $2 from Morisset and Gosford.
One could still not leave Newcastle by car at 6.23am and be in Sydney Central at 8.47am. You may do well from Newcastle down the Freeway to Hornsby but then the slow crawl sets in.
I hope this helps explain any misunderstanding that Cityrail trains may be slower now than in 1948.
Errol Jones, Adamstown, N.S.W.
(Ed: Errol opens up an interesting topic. Are there any train services
slower today than say 50 years ago? Does any reader know if there are any?)
Congratulations are due to V Line for the large increase in services introduced with their 6 December 1998 timetable change! The huge cutbacks of the early 1990s now seem a long time ago. Since then, in three successive timetable changes, V Line has - on those lines which still have train services - introduced additional services. The train services on the commuter lines around Melbourne are now very respectable.
But our interest in the AATTC is not only in the substantive services, but also in the way the services are presented in timetables.
V Line’s Staff Reference timetable is a compilation, on loose-leaf pages, of all the public timetable booklets plus more: reservation conditions, interstate services, and non-V Line rural bus services.
The Staff Reference timetable used to be an excellent, comprehensive reference. Unfortunately it has declined, including in the edition for the 6 December 1998 timetable changes.
Useful material has been deleted:
* Local buses between Ballarat and Maryborough no longer operate. The through buses do not stop at little places like Dunach, but they still appear in the relevant Tables - 307 and 308;
* Table 406 Melbourne-Eildon has apparently changed from being a V Line service to a non-V Line service because it has been transferred to the non-V Line section of the book as Table 861. However, it was moved with no alteration (other than the Table number) so there is no indication of the operator and thus nowhere to make enquiries;
* One of the new services introduced from 6 December 1998, the new Traralgon-Rosedale-Sale bus, does not appear where one expects it to, with all other Traralgon-Rosedale-Sale services in Table 500. It instead appears as part of Table 505 which is Traralgon-Heyfield-Maffra-Sale;
* The non-V Line bus section of the timetable is in theory a great idea, providing a comprehensive rural timetable for the whole State. But as Simon Aalbers pointed out in the Times some time ago, this section (except for Bellarine Transit) is not kept up-to-date! A recent personal experience of this occurred when I was planning to travel from Canberra to Melbourne for the AATTC AGM. I thought I had discovered an interesting roundabout route involving use of the Benalla-Mansfield bus. Just in case, I checked with the operator. I discovered the service operated bears no relationship whatever to the service shown in the V Line Staff Reference timetable (including in the new edition);
* The map of Time Zones on page 276 excludes the ACT from Eastern Standard Time (it isn’t only Tasmanians who get upset when they are left off maps).
This led me to look for the longest scheduled connection. This booby prize goes to the 1250 Saturdays Only bus from Halls Gap which has a connection at Stawell from 1325 to 1600 - 2 hours and 35 minutes (Table 205). There is no apparent reason for the bus from Halls Gap to run so early - perhaps it is to get the driver home for lunch.
There is strictly speaking an even longer connection shown. The 1425 Thursdays Only bus from Mirboo North has a connection to the train at Morwell from 1450 to 1736 - 2 hours and 46 minutes. However, the bus from Mirboo North is obviously only a return working of a shoppers’ trip.
Another interesting feature of the Staff Reference timetable is that it doesn’t indicate whether trains are operated by V Line, West Coast Railway, Hoys, Countrylink or Great Southern Railway. Even more interestingly it doesn’t mention that the new 1705 Saturdays Warrnambool-Melbourne train is scheduled to be regularly operated by a steam locomotive.
Despite my complaints, I hope that V Line will again publish the material in the Staff Reference timetable as a consolidated timetable for the whole State available to the public, as they used to do. That would be terrific!
Victor Isaacs, Kingston, A.C.T.
Derek Cheng mentions (The Times No.
175, October 1998 p. 15) that "bus timetables are not published in
Hong Kong." I am aware that in the past a timetable book has been published.
I have one that was issued in 1996.
I was advised of the existence of this publication but was unable to sight any copies in Hong Kong in such places as newsagents, etc. However I eventually obtained a copy from the Government Printing Office. It was $HK49 and 598pp plus a black and white map of Hong Kong. I do not know whether it is still being published under the new regime but from its format it is obviously an official Government publication.
The 1996 issue is the 13th annual edition. There are six parts as follows:
(b) Index of franchised bus operators in type of service and then route number order.
(c) Index of services for each local area.
(d) Details of all routes including fares, length of route, first and last service each day, headways and journey times. Condensed details are also included of the rail services beyond the border. Details given include special Recreational and other services which only operate for special events or on special festivals. The details of the fares charged on the tram service could be regarded as being unnecessarily repetitive while there is a vagueness of the effect of races at Sha Tin on the KCR services. Details of fares and services on the through trains to Changping/Guangzhou, Foshan and Zhaoping are also included.
(e) Urban and New Territories taxi charges.
The MTR and KCR fares are shown in detail on a station to station basis while the LRT fares are shown on the zone basis. The tram fare was already out of date having increased from $1.20 to $1.60 per trip since publication so other fares could also have changed. A passenger on the bus services will probably pay a different fare on the forward and return journeys. This is due to the fact that all buses used a fare box in which the passenger deposits his/her fare on boarding for the journey to the terminus irrespective how far is travelled.
An unusual feature is the inclusion for some bus routes of the statement: "Below scale fare authorised under section 13(4)(b), Public Bus Services Ordinance". In the cases noted, this appeared below the fare scale. It is not clear under what authority the other fares are charged. Interestingly, there were no fares shown for the KCR feeder bus service while passengers travelling to/from Lo Wu station on the border are discriminated against with a substantial surcharge on their rail fares with the single adult fare progressing from $HK8 to $HK29 and the child/senior citizen fare from $HK4 to $HK14.50 for the final 3.8km.
The book is a wealth of information on this densely populated region and would be of interest to the transport student as well as a potential traveller. Out of interest, the 598 pages weigh approximately 1lb 10oz so it is not the kind of publication for the average tourist to carry in the pocket or handbag.
Roger Wheaton, Rose Park, South Australia.
(Ed: Does any reader know whether the Hong Kong Public Transport Guide that Roger writes about is still being published? If it is still being published could someone please advise where they can be obtained. If they are no longer being published does anyone know when the last one was issued?
By coincidence Derek Cheng had previously written a brief review of the Hong Kong Public Transport Guide so I’ve included it below as it fits in with what Roger has written.)
Hong Kong’s public transport generally runs every 5 minutes and you don’t really need a timetable. Nevertheless, the Hong Kong Transport Department does publish a comprehensive Public Transport in Hong Kong - A Guide to Services. It is more than an inch thick and has information on ALL public transport operators from buses to trains to ferries that you will ever see, let alone ride on.
My copy is a 1996 edition. It has an orange cover with four pictures showing buses, trams, the Mass Transit Railway (MTR) and the Kowloon Canton Railway (KCR) trains and ferries.
It contains three parts. The first is phone numbers for the major transport operators and the Transport Department. The second and third are indexes of services, arranged by franchised bus operators and by area respectively. The fourth, the ‘main course’ of the publication, gives details of routes, fares, journey distances, first and last departure times, headways and journey times of scheduled public transport services. Part five shows taxi services and part six is a map of Hong Kong.
This comprehensive book is, as far as I know, available only from the Government Bookshop on the ground floor of the Queensway Government Offices which are at Admiralty. This is accessible by the MTR or by getting off buses which terminate or pass there.
If the same could happen in Australia, even in one state, it would be really good. But due to the size of Australia, the book would be several times larger than this Hong Kong publication. One possibility would be to split each transport mode or area into a separate booklet. I believe that would be better than having to get timetables at several different places. Public transport would be more accessible because people would know their service(s). However, it would not be good for timetable collectors as we enjoy reading different styles and colours and have less excuse to travel! Also, we enjoy the process of picking up timetables, or at least I do.
Derek Cheng, Beecroft, N.S.W.
(Ed: I like it when Derek says "we enjoy the process of picking up timetables". I’ve found that to be true in my own case as well. It’s akin to a salesman getting a sale or a businessman closing a deal. Whenever I come home from a "timetable crawl" my wife Margaret usually asks me "did you get much loot?". That’s what collecting timetables can be like. My wife also has a sticker on our fridge door which says "He who dies with the most timetables wins". The saddest thing I ever have to do is consign surplus timetables that have done the rounds in the "grab boxes" to the timetabling heaven [ie. the recycling bin]. I had to do this after the AGM in Canberra in 1997 and I can say it’s heaps more fun collecting timetables than throwing them away.)
Please find enclosed what I think is a perfect example of a timetable and how Australian operators could adapt to giving information. It is the Manchester METROLINK Passenger Pocket Guide. It is undated but current except to say that the two stops on the Bury route at High Street and Market Street in the centre of Manchester have now been amalgamated into one.
Also of interest is the section on tickets and validity of railway tickets on the tram service. Of particular interest in the Sundays only validity on tickets between Manchester and Mouldsworth. This comes about because the Chester to Manchester railway service via Mouldsworth, Altrincham and Stockport does not operate between Altrincham, Stokport and Manchester on Sundays – the service terminates at Altrincham and there is a connection with the tram – a fine example of integration. Chester is not included as there are other more direct services between Manchester and Chester.
Best wishes for another year as Editor. I can appreciate the effort being put into the magazine by you having for the last 21 years put a lot of my time into Fleetline and the HCVA.
Tris Tottenham, Eastwood, N.S.W.
Enclosed is the current timetable sheet for Air Niugini – Schedule 85A covering the period 16/11/98 to 27/3/99. Of interest is its unusual format. I have no idea how long it has been issued this way. It actually gives a representation of aircraft rosters by grouping all flights by a particular plane in one box, on a daily basis. It is therefore difficult to see frequencies of flights between selected ports.
The format and associated aircraft information does easily show that 3 x F28-4000’s, 3 x F28-1000’s and 2 x DH Dash 8’s are needed each day Mon – Sun for domestic routes. International routes require 2 x A310’s, 1 x 767 and use of two of the F28’s at selected times.
Alf Trumper, Waverton, N.S.W.
This month, Graphic Insight takes a look at a theoretical example of how a change to a timetable can impact passengers. You might think that increased service frequency will benefit all users of a transport service, but the analysis below shows this is not always true.
The graphs below illustrate the change in waiting time for intending passengers arriving at a scheduled pick-up point (station, wharf, bus or tram stop as the case may be) after an increased frequency service has been implemented compared to before that change. It is assumed that both services are on a regular-interval basis, and that our imaginary stop is one at which the scheduled times are at 0 minutes past the hour then regular intervals thereafter.
Some passengers will have a shorter wait under the new timetable - these are illustrated in white. Some passengers will have exactly the same length wait - these are illustrated in grey, whilst some will have a LONGER wait - these are illustrated in Black.
It is interesting to note that an increased service will actually disadvantage some. Of course, passengers who use a timetable should be able to take advantage of the improved service!