St Pancras railway station
St Pancras railway station known as London St Pancras and since 2007 as St Pancras International, is a central London railway terminus on Euston Road in the London Borough of Camden. It is the terminus for Eurostar continental services from London via High Speed 1 and the Channel Tunnel to Belgium and the Netherlands, it provides East Midlands Trains and Thameslink services to Corby and Nottingham on the Midland Main Line and Southeastern high-speed trains to Kent via Ebbsfleet International and Ashford International, local Thameslink cross-London services. It stands between the British Library, the Regent's Canal and King's Cross railway station, with which it shares a London Underground station, King's Cross St. Pancras; the station was constructed by the Midland Railway, which had an extensive network across the Midlands and the North of England, but no dedicated line into London. After rail traffic problems following the 1862 International Exhibition, the MR decided to build a connection from Bedford to London with their own terminus.
The station was constructed with a single-span iron roof. Following the station's opening on 1 October 1868, the MR constructed the Midland Grand Hotel on the station's façade, praised for its architecture and is now a Grade I listed building along with the rest of the station. By the 1960s, St Pancras was surplus to requirements and services were diverted to King's Cross and Euston but there was fierce opposition to its proposed closure and demolition of the station and hotel; the station was reinvented in the late 20th century as the terminal for the Channel Tunnel Rail Link in an urban regeneration plan across East London. The complex underwent a £800 million refurbishment, opened by Queen Elizabeth II in November 2007. A security-sealed terminal area was constructed for Eurostar services to continental Europe via High Speed 1 and the Channel Tunnel, with platforms for domestic trains to the north and south-east of England; the restored station has 15 platforms, a shopping centre, a coach facility.
St Pancras is owned by London and Continental Railways and managed by Network Rail, a subsidiary of Network Rail. St Pancras is at the southern end of the London Borough of Camden on a site orientated north/south, deeper than it is wide; the south is bounded by Euston Road, its frontage is the St Pancras Renaissance Hotel, while the west is bounded by Midland Road which separates it from the British Library and the east by Pancras Road which separates it from King's Cross station. The British Library is on the former goods yard site. Behind the hotel, the train shed is elevated 5 m above street level and the area below forms the station undercroft; the northern half of the station is bounded to the east by Camley Street, with Camley Street Natural Park across the road. To the north-east is King's Cross Central known as the Railway Lands, a complex of intersecting railway lines crossed by several roads and the Regent's Canal. Several London bus routes serve St Pancras, including 10, 59, 73, 205 and 390.
The station's name comes from the St. Pancras neighbourhood, which originates from the fourth-century Christian boy martyr Pancras of Rome; the station was commissioned by the Midland Railway, who had a network of routes in the Midlands, in south and west Yorkshire and Lancashire but no route of its own to London. Before 1857 the MR used the lines of the L&NWR for trains into the capital. In 1862, traffic for the second International Exhibition suffered extensive delays over the stretch of line into London over the GNR's track; this was the stimulus for the MR to build its own line to London from Bedford, which would be just under 50 miles long. Samuel Carter was solicitor for the parliamentary bill, sanctioned in 1863; the station was designed by William Henry Barlow and constructed on a site, a slum called Agar Town. Though coal and goods were the main motivation to build the station, the Midland realised the prestige of having a central London terminus, decided it must have a front on Euston Road.
The company purchased the eastern section of land on the road's north side owned by Earl Somers. The approaching line to the station crossed the Regent's Canal at height allowing the line reasonable gradients. Initial plans were for a two or three span roof with the void between station and ground level filled with spoil from tunnelling to join the Midland Main Line to the St. Pancras branch. Instead, due to the value of the land in such a location the lower area was used for freight, in particular beer from Burton; as a result, the undercroft was built with columns and girders, maximising space, set out to the same plans as those used for beer warehouses, with a basic unit of length that of a beer barrel. The contract for the construction of the station substructure and connecting lines was given to Messrs. Waring, with Barlow's assistant Campion as supervisor; the lower floor for beer warehousing contained interior columns 15 ft wide, 48 ft deep carrying girders supporting the main station and track.
The connection to the Widened Lines ran below the station's bottom level, in an east-to-west direction. To avoid the foundations of the roof interfering with the space beneath, to simplify the design, and
West Midlands (region)
The West Midlands is one of nine official regions of England at the first level of NUTS for statistical purposes. It covers the western half of the area traditionally known as the Midlands, it contains Birmingham and the larger West Midlands conurbation, the third most populous in the United Kingdom. The City of Coventry is located within the West Midlands county, but is separated from the conurbation to the west by several miles of green belt; the region contains 6 shire counties which stretch from the Welsh Border to the East Midlands. The region is geographically diverse, from the urban central areas of the conurbation to the rural western counties of Shropshire and Herefordshire which border Wales; the longest river in the UK, the River Severn, traverses the region southeastwards, flowing through the county towns of Shrewsbury and Worcester, the Ironbridge Gorge, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Staffordshire is home to the industrialised Potteries conurbation, including the city of Stoke-on-Trent, the Staffordshire Moorlands area, which borders the southeastern Peak District National Park near Leek.
The region encompasses five Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Wye Valley, Shropshire Hills, Cannock Chase, Malvern Hills, parts of the Cotswolds. Warwickshire is home to the towns of Stratford upon Avon, birthplace of writer William Shakespeare, the birthplace of Rugby football and Nuneaton, birthplace to author George Eliot; the official region contains the ceremonial counties of Herefordshire, Staffordshire, West Midlands and Worcestershire. There is some confusion in the use of the term "West Midlands", as the name is used for the much smaller West Midlands county and conurbation, in the central belt of the Midlands and on the eastern side of the West Midlands Region, it is still used by various organisations within that area, such as West Midlands Police and West Midlands Fire Service. The highest point in the region is Black Mountain, at 703 metres in west Herefordshire on the border with Powys, Wales; the region contains five Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, including the Shropshire Hills, Malvern Hills and Cannock Chase, parts of the Wye Valley and Cotswolds.
The Peak District national park stretches into the northern corner of Staffordshire. Served by many lines in the urban areas such as the West Coast Main Line and branches; the Welsh Marches Line and the Cotswold Line transect the region as well as the Cross Country Route and Chiltern Line. There are plans to reopen the Honeybourne Line. Numerous notable roads pass with most converging around the central conurbation; the M5, which connects South West England to the region, passes through Worcestershire, near to Worcester, through the West Midlands county, past West Bromwich, with its northern terminus at its junction with the M6 just south of Walsall. The M6, which has its southern terminus just outside the southeast of the region at its junction with the M1, which connects the region to North West England, passes Rugby and Nuneaton in Warwickshire and Birmingham, Stafford and Stoke-on-Trent in Staffordshire; the M6 toll provides an alternative route to the M6 between Coleshill and Cannock, passing north of Sutton Coldfield and just south of Lichfield.
The M40 connects the region through South East England to London, with its northern terminus at its junction with the M42. The M42 connects the M5 at Bromsgrove, passing around the south and east of Birmingham, joining the M40 and M6, passing Solihull and Castle Bromwich, to Tamworth, northeast of Birmingham; the M50 connects the M5 from near Tewkesbury to Ross-on-Wye in the southwest. The M54 connects Wellington in the west, to the M6 near Cannock; the A5 road traverses the region northwest-southeast, passing through Shrewsbury, Cannock and Nuneaton. The longest elevated road viaduct in the UK is the 3 miles section from Gravelly Hill to Castle Bromwich on the M6, opened on 24 May 1972; the section of the A45 in Coventry from Willenhall to Allesley in 1939 was one of the UK's first large planned road schemes. Princes Square in Wolverhampton had Britain's first automatic traffic lights on 5 November 1927. On 13 January 2012, 34-year-old Ben Westwood of Wednesfield, was caught by the police, when speeding at 180 mph, in an Audi RS5 with a Lamborghini engine, from Wolverhampton up to Stafford on the M6, back again.
He was travelling so fast that he was outpacing the Central Counties Air Operations Unit Eurocopter helicopter. He and the vehicle had been in fifteen smash and grab raids and he was jailed for nine years at Wolverhampton Crown Court in August 2012; as part of the transport planning system, the Regional Assembly is under statutory requirement to produce a regional transport strategy to provide long term planning for transport in the region. This involves region wide transport schemes such as those carried out by Highways England and Network Rail. Within the region, the local transport authorities carry out transport planning through the use of a local transport plan which outlines their strategies and implementation programme; the most recent LTP is that for the period 2006–11. In the West Midlands region, the following transport authorities have published their LTP online: Herefordshire, Shropshire U. A. Staffordshire and Wrekin U. A. Warwickshire, West Midlands and Worcestershire; the transport authority of Stoke-on-Trent U.
A. publishes a joint local transport plan in partnership with
Great Britain is an island in the North Atlantic Ocean off the northwest coast of continental Europe. With an area of 209,331 km2, it is the largest of the British Isles, the largest European island, the ninth-largest island in the world. In 2011, Great Britain had a population of about 61 million people, making it the world's third-most populous island after Java in Indonesia and Honshu in Japan; the island of Ireland is situated to the west of Great Britain, together these islands, along with over 1,000 smaller surrounding islands, form the British Isles archipelago. The island is dominated by a maritime climate with quite narrow temperature differences between seasons. Politically, Great Britain is part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, constitutes most of its territory. Most of England and Wales are on the island; the term "Great Britain" is used to include the whole of England and Wales including their component adjoining islands. A single Kingdom of Great Britain resulted from the union of the Kingdom of England and the Kingdom of Scotland by the 1707 Acts of Union.
In 1801, Great Britain united with the neighbouring Kingdom of Ireland, forming the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, renamed the "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland" after the Irish Free State seceded in 1922. The archipelago has been referred to by a single name for over 2000 years: the term'British Isles' derives from terms used by classical geographers to describe this island group. By 50 BC Greek geographers were using equivalents of Prettanikē as a collective name for the British Isles. However, with the Roman conquest of Britain the Latin term Britannia was used for the island of Great Britain, Roman-occupied Britain south of Caledonia; the earliest known name for Great Britain is Albion or insula Albionum, from either the Latin albus meaning "white" or the "island of the Albiones". The oldest mention of terms related to Great Britain was by Aristotle, or by Pseudo-Aristotle, in his text On the Universe, Vol. III. To quote his works, "There are two large islands in it, called the British Isles and Ierne".
Pliny the Elder in his Natural History records of Great Britain: "Its former name was Albion. Old French Bretaigne and Middle English Bretayne, Breteyne; the French form replaced the Old English Breoton, Bryten, Breten. Britannia was used by the Romans from the 1st century BC for the British Isles taken together, it is derived from the travel writings of the Pytheas around 320 BC, which described various islands in the North Atlantic as far north as Thule. Marcian of Heraclea, in his Periplus maris exteri, described the island group as αἱ Πρεττανικαὶ νῆσοι; the peoples of these islands of Prettanike were called the Priteni or Pretani. Priteni is the source of the Welsh language term Prydain, which has the same source as the Goidelic term Cruithne used to refer to the early Brythonic-speaking inhabitants of Ireland; the latter were called Picts or Caledonians by the Romans. Greek historians Diodorus of Sicily and Strabo preserved variants of Prettanike from the work of Greek explorer Pytheas of Massalia, who travelled from his home in Hellenistic southern Gaul to Britain in the 4th century BC.
The term used by Pytheas may derive from a Celtic word meaning "the painted ones" or "the tattooed folk" in reference to body decorations. The Greco-Egyptian scientist Ptolemy referred to the larger island as great Britain and to Ireland as little Britain in his work Almagest. In his work, Geography, he gave the islands the names Alwion and Mona, suggesting these may have been the names of the individual islands not known to him at the time of writing Almagest; the name Albion appears to have fallen out of use sometime after the Roman conquest of Britain, after which Britain became the more commonplace name for the island. After the Anglo-Saxon period, Britain was used as a historical term only. Geoffrey of Monmouth in his pseudohistorical Historia Regum Britanniae refers to the island as Britannia major, to distinguish it from Britannia minor, the continental region which approximates to modern Brittany, settled in the fifth and sixth centuries by migrants from Britain; the term Great Britain was first used in 1474, in the instrument drawing up the proposal for a marriage between Cecily the daughter of Edward IV of England, James the son of James III of Scotland, which described it as "this Nobill Isle, callit Gret Britanee".
It was used again in 1604, when King James VI and I styled himself "King of Great Brittaine and Ireland". Great Britain refers geographically to the island of Great Britain, it is often used to refer politically to the whole of England and Wales, including their smaller off shore islands. While it is sometimes used to refer to the whole of the United Kingdom, including Northern Ireland, this is not correct. Britain can refer to either all island
The East Midlands is one of nine official regions of England at the first level of NUTS for statistical purposes. It consists of Derbyshire, Lincolnshire, Northamptonshire and Rutland; the region has an area of 15,627 km2, with a population over 4.5 million in 2011. There are five main urban centres, Leicester, Lincoln and Nottingham. Others include Boston, Chesterfield, Grantham, Kettering, Mansfield, Newark-on-Trent and Wellingborough. Relative proximity to London and its position on the national motorway and trunk road networks help the East Midlands to thrive as an economic hub. Nottingham and Leicester are each classified as a sufficiency-level world city by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network; the region is served by East Midlands Airport, which lies between Derby and Nottingham. The high point at 636 m is Kinder Scout, in the Peak District of the southern Pennines in northwest Derbyshire near Glossop. Other upland, hilly areas of 95 to 280 m in altitude, together with lakes and reservoirs, rise in and around the Charnwood Forest north of Leicester, in the Lincolnshire Wolds.
The region's major rivers, the Nene, the Soar, the Trent and the Welland, flow in a northeasterly direction towards the Humber and the Wash. The Derwent, rises in the High Peak before flowing south to join the Trent some 2 miles before its conflux with the Soar; the centre of the East Midlands area lies between Bingham and Bottesford, Leicestershire. The geographical centre of England lies in Higham on the Hill in west Leicestershire, close to the boundary between the Leicestershire and Warwickshire; some 88 per cent of the land is rural in character, although agriculture accounts for less than three per cent of the region's jobs. Lincolnshire is the only maritime county of the six, with a true North Sea coastline of about 30 miles due to the protection afforded by Spurn Head and the North Norfolk foreshore. Church Flatts Farm in Coton in the Elms, South Derbyshire, is the furthest place from the sea in the UK. In April 1936 the first Ordnance Survey trig point was sited at Cold Ashby in Northamptonshire.
The Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts and The Wildlife Trusts are based next to the River Trent and Newark Castle railway station. The National Centre for Earth Observation is at the University of Leicester; the region is home to large quantities of limestone, the East Midlands Oil Province. Charnwood Forest is noted for its abundant levels of volcanic rock, estimated to be 600 million years old. A quarter of the UK's cement is manufactured in the region, at three sites in Hope and Tunstead in Derbyshire, Ketton Cement Works in Rutland. Of the aggregates produced in the region, 25 per cent are from Derbyshire and four per cent from Leicestershire. Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire each produce around 30 per cent of the region's sand and gravel output. Barwell in Leicestershire was the site of Britain's largest meteorite on 24 December 1965; the 2008 Lincolnshire earthquake was 5.2 in magnitude. Areas of the East Midlands designated by the East Midlands Biodiversity Partnership as Biodiversity Conservation Areas include: Charnwood Forest Coversand Heaths Derbyshire Peak Fringe and Lower Derwent Humberhead Levels Leighland Forest The Lincolnshire Limewoods and Heaths The Lincolnshire coast The Peak District Rockingham Forest Sherwood Forest Rutland, SW Lincolnshire and N Northamptonshire The Wash Areas of the East Midlands designated by the East Midlands Biodiversity Partnership as Biodiversity Enhancement Areas include: The Coalfields The Daventry Grasslands The Fens The Lincolnshire Coastal Grazing Marshes The Lincolnshire Wolds The National Forest The Yardley-Whittlewood RidgeTwo of the nationally designated Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty are: The Peak District The Lincolnshire Wolds Several towns in the southern part of the region, including Market Harborough, Rothwell, Kettering, Thrapston and Stamford, lie within the boundaries of what was once Rockingham Forest – designated a royal forest by William the Conqueror and was long hunted by English kings and queens.
The National Forest is an environmental project in central England run by The National Forest Company. Areas of north Leicestershire, south Derbyshire and south-east Staffordshire covering around 200 square miles are being planted in an attempt to blend ancient woodland with new plantings, it stretches from the western outskirts of Leicester in the east to Burton upon Trent in the west, is planned to link the ancient forests of Needwood and Charnwood. Sherwood Forest in Nottinghamshire attracts many visitors, is best known for its ties with the legend of Robin Hood. Regional financial funding decisions for the East Midlands are taken by East Midlands Councils, based in Melton Mowbray. East Midlands Councils is an unelected body made up of representatives of local government in the region; the defunct East Midlands Development Agency was headquartered next to the BBC's East Midlands office in Nottingham and made financial decisions regarding economic development in the region. Since the Conservative-Lib Dem coalition government launched its austerity programme after the 2010 general election, regional bodies such as those have been devolved to smaller groups now on a county level.
As a region today, there is no overriding body with significant financial or planning powers for the East Midlands. The East Midlands' largest settlements are Leicester, Derby, Chesterfield, Mansfield and Kettering. Leicester is the largest
Grand Central (train operating company)
Grand Central is an open-access operator of train services in the United Kingdom, owned by Arriva UK Trains. It has operated passenger rail services on the East Coast Main Line from Sunderland to London King's Cross since December 2007; the origins of Grand Central can be traced back to the privatisation of British Rail, when bids were lodged for the Midland Mainline and Regional Railways North East franchises by Ian Yeowart and a consortium of ex-British Rail managers under the Grand Central name. The company was dissolved in March 1998. In April 2000 a new company, Grand Central Railway Company Ltd, was founded to pursue open-access opportunities. In 2003 Grand Central applied to the Office of Rail Regulation to operate a two-hourly open-access service from Newcastle via the Caldervale Line and Manchester Victoria to Bolton using ex Virgin CrossCountry InterCity 125 trains; the application was rejected in June 2004. Coach operator Fraser Eagle Group purchased a 79% shareholding in Grand Central in 2004.
In February 2005 Grand Central applied to the Office of Rail Regulation to operate four daily services from Sunderland to London King's Cross and four daily services from Bradford Interchange to London King's Cross using Class 67 locomotives hauling five Mark 3 carriages and a Driving Van Trailer. In March 2006 the Office of Rail Regulation granted Grand Central access rights for three daily Sunderland to London King's Cross services. After failing at an Office of Rail Regulation hearing to have the process reversed, GNER sought a judicial review of the decision to grant Grand Central access rights but was rejected by the High Court in July 2006. Fraser Eagle sold its 79% shareholding in Grand Central in March 2007 to two former managers of Prism Rail, backed by a private equity group. Operations were due to start in May 2007, but delays in procuring and refurbishing rolling stock delayed this. Operations began on 18 December 2007 between London King's Cross. While awaiting delivery of all of the rolling stock only one Sunderland - Kings Cross and one York - Kings Cross service operated in each direction.
The full timetable was introduced in March 2008. Mechanical problems with the InterCity 125s led to services being cancelled, resulting in a reduced service being operated from May until July 2008. In March 2008 Grand Central applied to the Office of Rail Regulation to operate three daily services from Bradford Interchange to London King's Cross. In January 2009 Grand Central was granted access rights for three daily Bradford Interchange to London King's Cross services until December 2014 and a fourth Sunderland to London King's Cross service until May 2012. In August 2009 the fourth daily Sunderland - London service started; the Office of Rail Regulation announced in February 2010 that all access rights had been extended until December 2016. On 23 May 2010 Grand Central services between London King's Cross began, it was hoped that the service would start in December 2009, but difficulties in securing rolling stock caused delay. In November 2011 Grand Central was bought out by Arriva UK Trains.
At the time of the takeover, Grand Central had 123 employees, a turnover of £18.9m and debts of £44m. From December 2011 Bradford services made an additional stop at Mirfield. In December 2012, a fifth service on the Sunderland to London route, however due to pathing difficulties it commenced at Hartlepool. In December 2013, a fourth daily Bradford to London Kings Cross service commenced. In August 2014, Grand Central was granted an extension of its operating rights until December 2026. Grand Central connects the North East to London with two routes. Five daily services on the North East to London route run between Sunderland and London King's Cross calling at Hartlepool, Northallerton and York; this route is known as the North Eastern service. Grand Central has in the past given names to two trains on this route. Contrary to tradition in British named train services, these were individual one-way trips rather than pairs. In the 2008 timetable, the name The Zephyr was given to the early morning departure from Sunderland, while the evening train from London was called The 21st Century Limited.
As of the 2012 timetable, these names are no longer used by the company. Four daily services which run on the Yorkshire to London route operate between Bradford Interchange and London King's Cross calling at Low Moor, Brighouse, Wakefield Kirkgate, Doncaster; some services call at Pontefract Monkhill. This is known as the West Riding service. In December 2017, Grand Central announced plans to bid for a service from London Kings Cross to Cleethorpes in early 2018 for a date of 2020, it would involve the existing Bradford Interchange service extended to 10 coaches from London to Doncaster dividing with five coaches going to Cleethorpes via Scunthorpe, Barnetby and Grimsby. The other five coaches would be the existing service to Bradford Interchange; this proposal would require permission for a split of trains as it has not been used on the East Coast Main Line before. In February 2018, Grand Central announced plans for an additional call at Crowle, it plans to operate 4 trains per day from 2020. In March 2018, Grand Central announced that it had applied for six services from London to Sunderland, up from five now, six services from London to Bradford Interchange which would use Adelante trains.
In May 2018, Grand Central announced plans to add an additional evening service before 10pm between York to London. This service would be 10 carriages long. Grand Central applied for an additional early morning service and an evening services from London to Wakefield whic
CrossCountry is a train operating company in the United Kingdom owned by Arriva UK Trains, operating the New Cross Country franchise. It operates intercity and other long-distance trains across the country, but does not serve Greater London, it operates the UK's longest direct rail service from Aberdeen in the north-east of Scotland to Penzance in the south-west of England. It is one of only two franchised train operating companies that does not operate any stations, the other being Caledonian Sleeper. All routes terminate at Birmingham New Street. In June 2006 the Department for Transport announced its intention to restructure a number of franchises. Included was a New Cross Country franchise that would incorporate the existing InterCity Cross Country franchise run by Virgin CrossCountry, less the West Coast Main Line services with the Birmingham to Scotland services transferring to Virgin Trains West Coast and the Manchester to Scotland services transferring to First TransPennine Express; some services from the Central Trains franchise were to be added.
In October 2006 the Department for Transport issued the Invitation to Tender to the shortlisted bidders, FirstGroup, National Express and Virgin Rail Group. On 10 July 2007 the Department for Transport announced that Arriva had won the New Cross Country franchise with the services operated by Virgin CrossCountry transferring to CrossCountry on 11 November 2007 along with the Cardiff to Nottingham and Birmingham to Stansted Airport services from Central Trains. After taking over the franchise, CrossCountry continued to operate the existing timetable including the West Coast Main Line services for four weeks; when the new timetable commenced on 9 December 2007, the Birmingham to Edinburgh and Glasgow services transferred to Virgin Trains West Coast and the Manchester to Edinburgh and Glasgow services transferred to First TransPennine Express. The tender did not require retention of the services beyond Guildford after December 2008, so the services to Gatwick Airport and Brighton ceased; as a result, all CrossCountry services now avoid Greater London.
From December 2008 a daily Nottingham to Bournemouth service was introduced. From December 2010 a number of services from Newcastle were extended from Reading to Southampton. From May 2011 a number of services were extended from Edinburgh to Glasgow to replace East Coast services. Due to conclude on 31 March 2016, the franchise has been extended until December 2019. An Invitation to Tender was to be issued in October 2018 for the next franchise, but in September 2018 the competition was cancelled to allow the recommendations from a report into the franchise system to be incorporated. In November and December 2017, CrossCountry on-board train managers and senior conductors affiliated with the National Union of Rail and Transport Workers staged five 24-hour and two 48-hour strikes in an industrial dispute regarding staff rostering, in particular in relation to working on Sundays. Further strikes were planned for January 2018, these were cancelled after CrossCountry and the RMT came to an agreement over staff working conditions on 11 January.
Separate strike action was threatened by the Transport Salaried Staffs' Association union that month, with strikes planned for 26 January. These were in relation to CrossCountry staff being offered a 1% pay rise, compared to a 3.3% pay rise for staff at other Arriva-owned train operating companies. The planned industrial action by the TSSA was cancelled, after CrossCountry agreed to match their demands for an equal pay rise; the company operates medium- and long-distance services that run outside of the London area. The network is centred at Birmingham, all routes either terminate or pass through Birmingham New Street station. Services can be categorised into two types: Inter-City: long-distance, fast services between the South West of England and the North of England or Scotland via Birmingham; these are operated by Turbostars. CrossCountry's official website does show a distinction between the two types of services, but does not explicitly call them Inter-City and Regional; as of December 2018, the Monday-Saturday daytime services, with frequencies in trains per hour, include: These services combine to provide higher frequencies on the following sections: Birmingham to Bristol: two trains per hour Birmingham to Leicester: two trains per hour Birmingham to Manchester: two trains per hour Birmingham to Newcastle: two trains per hour Cheltenham to Birmingham: three trains per hour Reading to Birmingham: two trains per hour Birmingham to Derby: four trains per hourThe Sunday service is similar to the weekday service, except that the hourly Birmingham - Nottingham services do not run, while the other services do not start until late morning or early afternoon, have a different stopping pattern.
The above table shows the basic service pattern. CrossCountry extended some of its Bournemouth services to Weymouth for
Republic of Ireland
Ireland known as the Republic of Ireland, is a country in north-western Europe occupying 26 of 32 counties of the island of Ireland. The capital and largest city is Dublin, located on the eastern part of the island, whose metropolitan area is home to around a third of the country's over 4.8 million inhabitants. The sovereign state shares its only land border with a part of the United Kingdom, it is otherwise surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the Celtic Sea to the south, St George's Channel to the south-east, the Irish Sea to the east. It is a parliamentary republic; the legislature, the Oireachtas, consists of a lower house, Dáil Éireann, an upper house, Seanad Éireann, an elected President who serves as the ceremonial head of state, but with some important powers and duties. The head of government is the Taoiseach, elected by the Dáil and appointed by the President; the state was created as the Irish Free State in 1922 as a result of the Anglo-Irish Treaty. It had the status of Dominion until 1937 when a new constitution was adopted, in which the state was named "Ireland" and became a republic, with an elected non-executive president as head of state.
It was declared a republic in 1949, following the Republic of Ireland Act 1948. Ireland became a member of the United Nations in December 1955, it joined the European Economic Community, the predecessor of the European Union, in 1973. The state had no formal relations with Northern Ireland for most of the twentieth century, but during the 1980s and 1990s the British and Irish governments worked with the Northern Ireland parties towards a resolution to "the Troubles". Since the signing of the Good Friday Agreement in 1998, the Irish government and Northern Ireland Executive have co-operated on a number of policy areas under the North-South Ministerial Council created by the Agreement. Ireland ranks among the top twenty-five wealthiest countries in the world in terms of GDP per capita, as the tenth most prosperous country in the world according to The Legatum Prosperity Index 2015. After joining the EEC, Ireland enacted a series of liberal economic policies that resulted in rapid economic growth.
The country achieved considerable prosperity between the years of 1995 and 2007, which became known as the Celtic Tiger period. This was halted by an unprecedented financial crisis that began in 2008, in conjunction with the concurrent global economic crash. However, as the Irish economy was the fastest growing in the EU in 2015, Ireland is again ascending league tables comparing wealth and prosperity internationally. For example, in 2015, Ireland was ranked as the joint sixth most developed country in the world by the United Nations Human Development Index, it performs well in several national performance metrics, including freedom of the press, economic freedom and civil liberties. Ireland is a member of the European Union and is a founding member of the Council of Europe and the OECD; the Irish government has followed a policy of military neutrality through non-alignment since prior to World War II and the country is not a member of NATO, although it is a member of Partnership for Peace. The 1922 state, comprising 26 of the 32 counties of Ireland, was "styled and known as the Irish Free State".
The Constitution of Ireland, adopted in 1937, provides that "the name of the State is Éire, or, in the English language, Ireland". Section 2 of the Republic of Ireland Act 1948 states, "It is hereby declared that the description of the State shall be the Republic of Ireland." The 1948 Act does not name the state as "Republic of Ireland", because to have done so would have put it in conflict with the Constitution. The government of the United Kingdom used the name "Eire" and, from 1949, "Republic of Ireland", for the state; as well as "Ireland", "Éire" or "the Republic of Ireland", the state is referred to as "the Republic", "Southern Ireland" or "the South". In an Irish republican context it is referred to as "the Free State" or "the 26 Counties". From the Act of Union on 1 January 1801, until 6 December 1922, the island of Ireland was part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. During the Great Famine, from 1845 to 1849, the island's population of over 8 million fell by 30%. One million Irish died of starvation and/or disease and another 1.5 million emigrated to the United States.
This set the pattern of emigration for the century to come, resulting in constant population decline up to the 1960s. From 1874, under Charles Stewart Parnell from 1880, the Irish Parliamentary Party gained prominence; this was firstly through widespread agrarian agitation via the Irish Land League, that won land reforms for tenants in the form of the Irish Land Acts, secondly through its attempts to achieve Home Rule, via two unsuccessful bills which would have granted Ireland limited national autonomy. These led to "grass-roots" control of national affairs, under the Local Government Act 1898, in the hands of landlord-dominated grand juries of the Protestant Ascendancy. Home Rule seemed certain when the Parliament Act 1911 abolished the veto of the House of Lords, John Redmond secured the Third Home Rule Act in 1914. However, the Unionist movement had been growing since 1886 among Irish Protestants after the introduction of the first home rule bill, fearing discrimination and loss of economic and social privileges if Irish Catholics achieved real political power