British Rail Class 175
The Class 175 Coradia is a type of diesel multiple unit passenger train used in the United Kingdom. The fleet of 27 sets were built from 1999 to 2001 by Alstom at Washwood Heath in Birmingham, they are part of the Coradia family of trains along with the Class 180. They can not operate on all lines; the entire fleet is owned by the rolling stock operating company Angel Trains. They were leased to First North Western, but the fleet was since transferred to Arriva Trains Wales, Transport for Wales. For a brief period, units were sub-leased to First TransPennine Express. In September 1997, North West Trains placed an order with Alstom for 27 train-sets; the original order was for eleven two-carriage units with a top speed of 100 mph, seven three-carriage units with a top speed of 100 mph and nine three-carriage units with a top speed of 125 mph. This was reconfigured to eleven two-carriage and sixteen three-carriage units all with a top speed of 100 mph, worth £78 million, built to allow for the replacement of elderly Class 101'heritage' DMUs and locomotive-hauled trains to Bangor and Holyhead.
As they were constructed, the old locomotive sheds at Chester were replaced with a purpose-built facility in order to service the Class 175 units. Units were tested at low speed at the Severn Valley Railway before further testing and driver training at the Old Dalby Test Track from November 1999; the first unit entered service on 20 June 2000. The two-carriage units are numbered 175001–011, the three-carriage units 175101–116. Carriages are labelled as coaches A–B–C, with two-car units having no coach B; each train has provision for two disabled passengers in coach A, storage for two bicycles in coach C. Early reliability problems meant that some services were operated by old rolling stock at short notice. Remedial work included improving brakes and bogies, the reliability of the units is now improved. Class 175 Coradias are fitted with a passenger information system, which consists of onboard LED display and audio announcements of train destinations and arrivals; the entire Class 175 fleet was operated by First North Western from their introduction in 2000 until October 2003, when franchise changes led to North Wales Coast Line services being transferred to Wales & Borders.
The fleet was transferred to Wales & Borders' successor Arriva Trains Wales in 2004, with some being sub-leased to First TransPennine Express, who took over First North Western's long-distance routes. First TransPennine Express took delivery of new Class 185 Desiro units in 2006, the sub-leased Class 175s returned to ATW. On 14 October 2018, the Class 175 fleet transferred to Transport for Wales; the units have been based at the Chester depot throughout, they have been operated in Wales, North-West England and the West Midlands. From their introduction in 2000, First North Western operated the Class 175s until 2003, when the fleet was transferred to Arriva Trains Wales; the units were used on various services: Birmingham New Street/Crewe to Holyhead Manchester Airport to Blackpool/Cumbria Manchester Piccadilly and Llandudno via Warrington Bank Quay. Due to interworked diagrams between the Chester-Warrington-Manchester and Chester-Altrincham-Manchester line the latter saw a morning peak train booked to be a Class 175, while the former saw Class 150s on some services which started or terminated at Chester.
In 2003, the trains transferred to the Wales & Borders franchise and subsequently ATW. However, under a contractual agreement, 11 units were leased back daily from ATW to FNW and later to First TransPennine Express for use on the Manchester Airport to Blackpool and Cumbria services until mid-December 2006, when that contract expired, they continued to work the First North Western morning peak service between Chester and Manchester Piccadilly via Altrincham until December 2004. The entire Class 175 Coradia fleet was transferred to ATW when it took over responsibility for the North Wales Coast Line in 2004. On 14 October 2018, the Class 175 fleet transferred to Transport for Wales; the fleet is based at Chester Depot. Transport for Wales uses Class 175s on Cardiff Central to Holyhead service; some South Wales bound services continue beyond Cardiff to Maesteg, Fishguard Harbour and Milford Haven. They continue to operate in the North West on Llandudno to Manchester Piccadilly services and the three trains daily extend to Manchester Airport.
Since the installation of ERTMS signalling on the Cambrian Coast in 2008, the Class 175s are not used on services to Aberystwyth and Pwllheli because they lack the necessary equipment. These services are operated with Class 158 Express Sprinter units. Fourteen Class 175 Coradia units are in operation on daily Welsh Marches Line services to South Wales from Manchester and Holyhead, while ten are in operation on the North Wales Inter-Urban services between Manchester/Crewe and Chester/North Wales. One Sunday-only service sees the unit travel from Holyhead to Birmingham New Street via Stafford, they have been cleared by Network Rail to operate the lines from Cardiff Central to Maesteg and Ebbw Vale. All units are scheduled to be off-leased in 2021/22. On 16 January 2010, 175103 operating the 08:30 service from Manchester Piccadilly to Milford Haven struck two cars at Moreton-on-Lugg crossing between Hereford and Leominster; the front seat passenger in one of the cars was fatally injured, although there were no casualties on the train.
The train did not derail. The signaller had raised the barriers in error wh
Manchester Piccadilly station
Manchester Piccadilly is the principal railway station in Manchester, England. Opened as Store Street in 1842, it was renamed Manchester London Road in 1847 and Manchester Piccadilly in 1960. Located to the south-east of Manchester city centre, it hosts long-distance intercity and cross-country services to national destinations including London, Glasgow, Cardiff, Exeter, Reading and Bournemouth, it is one of 19 major stations managed by Network Rail. The station has twelve terminal and two through platforms. Piccadilly is a major interchange with the Metrolink light rail system with two tram platforms in its undercroft. Piccadilly is the busiest station in the Manchester station group with nearly 28 million passenger entries and exits between April 2017 and March 2018, it is the fourth busiest station in the United Kingdom outside London. The station hosts services from six train operating companies, it is the second busiest interchange station outside London, with 3.8 million passengers changing trains annually.
Between the late 1990s and early 2000s, Piccadilly Station was refurbished, taking five years and costing £100 million, it was the most expensive improvement on the UK rail network at the time. Further improvements and expansion plans have been proposed. In December 2014, a Transport and Works Act application was submitted for the construction of two through platforms as part of the Manchester Piccadilly and Manchester Oxford Road Capacity Scheme; as of 2019, this application has not been approved by the incumbent government. To allow the station to accommodate high speed services under High Speed 2 proposals, five platforms would be required and the Metrolink station would be reconfigured. A preferred option of the more speculative High Speed 3 programme requires the construction of more platforms underneath the existing platforms. In June 1840, the Manchester and Birmingham Railway opened a temporary terminus on its line to Stockport on Travis Street. A large site, 1,700 ft long by 500 ft wide, was cleared of terraced houses and industrial premises to make way for the permanent station Store Street, built on top of a viaduct, 30 ft above ground level.
The station was opened adjacent to London Road on 8 May 1842. It had two platforms and passenger amenities and by the line had been extended to Crewe. Store Street was designed by M&BR's chief engineer, George W. Buck, who designed many of the line's structures including the Stockport Viaduct. Charles Hutton Gregory was the assistant engineer; the station was shared from the beginning with the Sheffield, Ashton-under-Lyne and Manchester Railway following an agreement made by the promoters in 1837. The M&BR amalgamated with other railway companies to create the London and North Western Railway in 1846; the SA&MR changed its name to the Manchester and Lincolnshire Railway three years later. In 1847, the station was renamed London Road. In 1849 the Manchester, South Junction and Altrincham Railway began using the station after its line from Manchester Oxford Road was extended, its single platform which opened on 1 August 1849 to the south of, adjacent to the main part of station, was the predecessor of through platforms 13 and 14.
The MSJA&R's line connected to the main line south of the station and formed a through route to the LNWR's line to Liverpool. By the 1850s, London Road was overcrowded and the relationship between the LNWR and MS&LR had deteriorated. In 1862, the station was rebuilt and expanded so that it could be divided, the MS&LR occupying the north-eastern side and the LNWR the south-western side; the station was given a new entrance building and concourse and each company had separate booking offices and passenger facilities. A 656 ft long iron and glass trainshed was built over the terminal platforms. On 20 January 1866, a fatal accident occurred during the roof's construction, when part of it collapsed killing two workmen and injuring 30 others; the enquiry determined that the collapse was caused by heavy snowfall. At the same time, both companies built warehouses around the northern side of the station, the viaduct south of the station to Ardwick was widened to carry four tracks. Within ten years, the station was again over-crowded as traffic continued to increase and expansion was again required.
Between 1880 and 1883, the LNWR widened its side of the station and built more platforms, which were covered by two more 69 ft wide arched spans to the trainshed. At the same time, the MSJ&AR platform was taken out and rebuilt as an island platform on a girder bridge over Fairfield Street and linked to the main station by a footbridge. In May 1882, the improvements were opened. In 1910, the adjacent Mayfield station opened with four platforms to alleviate overcrowding at London Road; the stations were linked by a footbridge. Mayfield station closed to passengers in 1960 and to all traffic in 1986; the derelict station has remained in situ despite proposed redevelopment schemes including reopening it to relieve demand. Following the 1923 railway grouping, the LNWR amalgamated with several other railway companies to create the London and Scottish Railway, the GCR amalgamated with other railways to create the London and North Eastern Railway; the division of the station was maintained and it continued to be operated as two separate statio
Llandudno railway station
Llandudno railway station serves the seaside town of Llandudno in North Wales, is the terminus of a 3 miles long branch line from Llandudno Junction on the Crewe to Holyhead North Wales Coast Line. The station is managed by Transport for Wales. Llandudno Victoria station, the lower terminus of the Great Orme Tramway, is a 15-minute walk from the main station; the first station and the branch line was constructed by the St. George's Harbour and Railway Company and opened on 1 October 1858; the trains at first ran to and from Conwy station until the completion of Llandudno Junction station. The line was soon absorbed by the London and North Western Railway, which in turn became part of the London and Scottish Railway in 1923. Vaughan Street in Llandudno was laid out in 1858 as the station approach road; as the first station had become inadequate to cope with increasing usage, the present Llandudno station buildings and frontage together with five platforms and an extensive glass roof were erected in 1892 and the station still has the Victorian carriage road between the two principal platforms.
Platforms 4 & 5 had been disused since 1978 with the tracks to the platforms being disconnected and dismantled in 2012. The southernmost half of the glass roof was removed some decades ago, the remainder was cut back again in 1990. Half of the station frontage, disused for years was demolished in May 2009; the station retains its semaphore manual signal box. In recent years, plans were unveiled for the transformation of the station into a Transport Interchange, which would involve the demolition of the disused part of the frontage and the introduction of new passenger facilities. Following the provision of funding, reconstruction began in 2013 and the £5.2 million scheme was completed in the summer of 2014. The work included a 130 space car park, a glazed concourse, a bus interchange, new taxi rank, a shop/cafe. There are a new entrance and improvements to the platforms; the ticket office is staffed part-time. A self-service ticket machine is provided for use outside these times and for collecting advance purchase tickets.
There are toilets and a waiting room on the concourse. Train running information is provided by digital information screens and automated announcements. Step-free access is available to all platforms. Transport for Wales provides an hourly service to Manchester Piccadilly via Colwyn Bay, Prestatyn, Flint and Warrington. Two daily services on this route run to Crewe rather than Manchester and certain trains are extended through to Manchester Airport. Transport for Wales operates an hourly shuttle to Llandudno Junction which connects with services to Bangor & Holyhead and for services to Birmingham New Street and South Wales, they operate one weekday direct service from Llandudno to Cardiff Central via Wrexham General without any change being required at Llandudno Junction. Transport for Wales provides four trains per day along the Conwy Valley Line serving Llanrwst, Betws-y-Coed and Blaenau Ffestiniog. On summer Sundays TfW Rail operate a half-hourly shuttle service to Llandudno Junction until early evening.
In addition, two trains a day run down the Conwy Valley Line to Blaenau Ffestiniog. Virgin Trains West Coast used to run a direct afternoon service to London Euston, but this service was discontinued at the December 2008 timetable change - it instead now terminates at Chester. Mitchell, Vic. Bala to Llandudno. West Sussex: Middleton Press. Figs. 114-120. ISBN 9781906008871. OCLC 668198724. Mitchell, Vic. Rhyl to Bangor. West Sussex: Middleton Press. Figs. 64-70. ISBN 9781908174154. OCLC 859594415. Allen, David. "Seaside signalling in North Wales". RAIL. No. 342. EMAP Apex Publications. Pp. 40–42. ISSN 0953-4563. OCLC 49953699. Train times and station information for Llandudno railway station from National Rail Llandudno and North Wales Train Services 1947 and 2003 Virgin Trains restore through London to Llandudno Service
Manchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway
The Manchester and Lincolnshire Railway was formed by amalgamation in 1847. The MS&LR changed its name to the Great Central Railway in 1897 in anticipation of the opening in 1899 of its London Extension; the MS&LR was formed by the amalgamation of the Sheffield, Ashton-under-Lyne and Manchester Railway with two proposed lines – the Sheffield and Lincolnshire Junction Railway and the Great Grimsby and Sheffield Junction Railway, with its headquarters at Manchester London Road. The Sheffield, Ashton-under-Lyne and Manchester Railway had opened between Manchester and Sheffield in 1845, but as early as 1844 the promoters of the Sheffield and Lincolnshire Junction had approached the SA&MR with a view to the latter leasing it; the Great Grimsby and Sheffield Junction had been promoted by the Grimsby Docks Company the oldest company of the three. Until reaching south with its "Derbyshire Lines", the MS&LR was an east-to-west Trans-Pennine line. Before the formation of the MS&LR, the SA&MR had absorbed a number of existing and proposed lines.
Another important part of its operation was the Manchester, South Junction and Altrincham Railway, promoted as its link to the Liverpool and Manchester Railway, which it owned and operated jointly with the Manchester and Birmingham Railway. The first board meeting of the amalgamated company took place on 6 January 1847. At this time only the SA&MR was open and running. On 29 February 1848 the Manchester and Lincolnshire Railway opened its line from New Holland to Grimsby, in the year, connecting to Market Rasen and Lincoln. Despite severe financial problems the whole line was completed during the next year, with the final link from Woodhouse Junction, near Sheffield, to Gainsborough being completed in 1849. On 16 July, a special train carried the directors from Liverpool to Grimsby. Attention turned towards a second bore for the Woodhead Tunnel and further expansion; the MS&LR owned three important canals, the Ashton Canal, the Macclesfield Canal and the Peak Forest Canal, along with the Peak Forest Tramway.
Approval was granted for an extension of the Whaley Bridge branch of the Peak Forest Canal from Bugsworth to the tramway, with the eventual aim of reaching Buxton, although it was not proceeded with. In 1849 the first part of the Manchester, South Junction and Altrincham Railway opened; the M&SL had a good working relationship with the Great Northern. The GG&SR's first line from Grimsby to New Holland and the latter's ferries had opened the same day as the GNR's first line, that from Grimsby to Louth. There was a close association where the GNR crossed near Retford, with the two sharing the station and the GNR granted running powers on S&LJR tracks into Sheffield; this gave the GNR access to Liverpool, while it gave the MS&LR access to London. The MS&LR a connection with the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway at Stalybridge with which it shared the station; the experience of other lines, notably the Midland and the LNWR was showing that a dedicated and competent manager was essential, the MS&LR appointed James Allport who joined it on 1 January 1850.
Among his other duties, he was charged with improving relations with the Midland and the LNWR. Thus the MS&LR became a partner in. However, while it gave a monopoly over the L&Y and Midland for traffic to Hull it prohibited co-operation with the Great Northern, with whom relations became bitter. In 1851 through carriages were introduced from Sheffield to London via the Midland and LNWR. In the same year the electric telegraph, used in the Woodhead Tunnel was extended across the network – and a contract was signed by "Messres. Smith and Son of London" to sell books at the principal stations. In September, the new station at Sheffield was opened, the Great Exhibition in London ensured a successful year; the second bore of the Woodhead Tunnel opened at the beginning of 1852. The Company's main source of income lay with freight coal. and a number of new short lines were built, along with a start on the long-awaited Barnsley branch which, was not completed until 1855. However, Allport frustrated by the behaviour of some of the directors, accepted the post of General Manager of the Midland, resigned in September.
Edward Watkin took over in his place in 1854. He had been the assistant of Huish at the LNWR and he revealed that the latter, in spite of the Euston Square agreement, had been negotiating with the GNR for a territorial division between the two companies, to the detriment of the MS&LR – and the Midland. Relations between the MS&LR and the GNR improved as the restrictions placed on the latter's operations over the MS&LR lines were removed, MS&LR became somewhat wary of the LNWR. In particular a number of new small lines were being built; some would give the MS&LR an alternative path into Liverpool, while the proposed Stockport and Whaley Bridge Railway, supported by the LNWR, would supplant its own plans for a line to Peak Forest and Buxton, which it had not been able to pursue. The LNWR still felt placated the MS&LR by a series of mutual agreements. However, in 1855 there was another meeting at Euston Square; the Stockport to Whaley Bridge line was complete and the possibility of extending it to Buxton or Rowsley was discussed.
Both the MS&LR and the Midland proposed that no one of the three companies should proceed alone with any scheme, but the meeting ended with them more than a little suspicious of the LNWR. At this point legal action was taken against a common purse agreement which existed between the LNWR and
Hawarden Bridge crosses the River Dee, near Shotton, Wales. The railway bridge was built by the Manchester and Lincolnshire Railway, on the Chester & Connah's Quay Railway, it opened on 3 August 1889. Hawarden Bridge is on the Borderlands Line between Wrexham to Bidston. Hawarden Bridge railway station is on the north side of the bridge and Shotton station is on the south side. National Cycle Route 5 crosses the Dee on the bridge on the path adjacent to the railway line. On opening, Hawarden Bridge was largest swing bridge in the United Kingdom; the highest temperature recorded in Wales – 35.2°C, was recorded at the bridge in August 1990. In the 2010s, the bridge was restored enabling speed and axel load limitations to be raised, it is a Grade II listed structure. In the 1880s, the Manchester and Lincolnshire Railway built a line between Chester Northgate and Hawarden Bridge Junction, it crossed the River Dee on a 165 metre-long bridge. The Board of Trade, advised by Sire George Nares, decreed that the bridge needed an opening of at least 140 feet to allow ships to pass through.
In 1886, an Act of Parliament was obtained for the construction of a bridge. The civil engineer C. A. Hobson designed a steel bridge, it was constructed by John Sons. Construction took about two years and cost around £70,000. To overcome challenging conditions of the estuary, its foundations were built in brick-lined wells as directed by the project's chief engineer, Frances Fox; the bridge was opened to traffic on 3 August 1889 by Catherine Gladstone, the wife of Prime Minister William Ewart Gladstone. Gladstone laid the first cylinder in the river in an earlier ceremony to mark the commencement of construction. Hawarden Bridge's central section, Span 10, contained the swing bridge; as built, it rotated through 90-degrees to enable the passage of tall ships. The 85-metre section weighed 764 metric tonnes and took 40 seconds to move between its closed and open positions; the moving span was controlled from a manned tower next to the bridge. When built, it was the largest opening span of any swing bridge in the United Kingdom.
The bridge no longer opens, the span was welded shut decades ago. The last time it opened was in 1960, it was made redundant by the absence of tall ships. The remains of the rotating mechanism – hydraulic cylinders attached to a drive chain and sprocket – are visible beneath the bridge but the pumping stations and the steam engines used for powering it have been demolished. River traffic travels underneath the bridge from the Airbus factory at Broughton, they pass under the bridge before reaching the port of Mostyn where they are loaded onto larger sea-faring vessels. Pedestrians and cyclists can cross the bridge via a walkway that connects the Wales Coast Path and the Chester Greenway Railway Path section of National Cycle Route 5, it is the responsibility of Sustrans Cymru. In late 2003, improvements to the walkway were completed. Exposure to the harsh conditions on the Dee Estuary for over one hundred years, degraded the condition of the bridge. Erosion, caused by saltwater and weather, was attributed for its gradual degradation.
Restrictions were imposed on rail traffic, axle load was limited to RA7, a maximum speed of 20mph was imposed and only the one track could loaded. Network Rail stated. In 2009, councillors became concerned about cracks in the bridge's supporting brickwork. An inspection by Network Rail determined it was safe and the damage was aesthetic. In the 2010s, a major strengthening and restoration programme was started; the work was carried out in two phases, strengthening was carried out before the erection of the soffit scaffolding, followed by abrasive blasting and repainting. Aluminium scaffolding was used because the bridge was not strong enough to support heavier steel scaffolding; the bridge remained open to rail traffic throughout. A 5mph speed limit was imposed on the bridge due to the tight clearances involved. Restoration, completed on 12 November 2014, cost of £8 million and involved installing 130 tonnes of steel, 12,000 tension control bolts, in excess of 85,000 man hours. An RA10 rating was instated and all operational restrictions were removed.
List of bridges in Wales List of railway bridges and viaducts in the United Kingdom Hawarden Bridge and Dee Marsh Photographs from BBC Central section photo
Buckley railway station
Buckley railway station serves the town of Buckley in Flintshire, Wales. The station is 8½ miles north of Wrexham Central on the Borderlands Line; the station was known as Buckley Junction until 6 May 1974. It is the nearest station to Flintshire; the first railway in the area was the Buckley Railway, a short freight branch linking the town with the River Dee at Connah's Quay. The Wrexham and Connah's Quay Railway arrived in 1866 from a terminus at Wrexham Exchange alongside the GWR's Wrexham General station and was linked into the Buckley Railway from the outset taking it over in 1873. Passenger services from the south began soon afterwards, but not to the current station - this dates from 1890, when the "Hawarden Loop" line northwards to Shotton was opened. Further construction by the Great Central Railway added links to Chester and to Bidston by 1896; the original Buckley Railway line down to the docks at Connah's Quay remained freight-only throughout its life closing in 1965. This ran via the original Buckley station.
Few traces of this route now remain. The station became an unstaffed halt in 1969 and the substantial two-storey main building was subsequently sold off, it is now used as industrial premises. The station has no ticket provision, so these must be purchased in advance or on the train. Train running information can be obtained via CIS screens, timetable poster boards or a payphone on platform 2. Step-free access is available to both platforms; the station is served by an hourly service Monday - Saturday southbound to Wrexham Central and northbound to Bidston for connections to Birkenhead and Liverpool stations via the Wirral Line. Connections to Shrewsbury and Birmingham are available at Wrexham General and for the North Wales Coast line at Shotton. On Sundays, there are six trains in each direction. Butt, R. V. J.. The Directory of Railway Stations: details every public and private passenger station, halt and stopping place and present. Sparkford: Patrick Stephens Ltd. ISBN 978-1-85260-508-7. OCLC 60251199.
Mitchell, Vic. Wrexham to New Brighton. West Sussex: Middleton Press. Figs. 38-39, 42. ISBN 9781908174475. OCLC 859543196. Train times and station information for Buckley railway station from National Rail
A double-track railway involves running one track in each direction, compared to a single-track railway where trains in both directions share the same track. In the earliest days of railways in the United Kingdom, most lines were built as double-track because of the difficulty of co-ordinating operations before the invention of the telegraph; the lines tended to be busy enough to be beyond the capacity of a single track. In the early days the Board of Trade did not consider any single-track railway line to be complete. In the earliest days of railways in the United States most lines were built as single-track for reasons of cost, inefficient timetable working systems were used to prevent head-on collisions on single lines; this improved with the development of the train order system. In any given country, rail traffic runs to one side of a double-track line, not always the same side as road traffic, thus in Belgium, France, Sweden and Italy for example, the railways use left-hand running, while the roads use right-hand running.
In Switzerland, the Lausanne Metro and railways at the Germany border area use RHT as well as all tram systems. The Semmering Railway in Austria uses LHT while most of the country is RHT. In countries such as Indonesia, it is the reverse. In Spain, where roads are RHT, metro systems in Madrid and Bilbao use LHT. In Sweden, the tram systems in Gothenburg, Norrköping and Stockholm are RHT; the railroads use LHT in general. In the Ukraine, some sections of Kryvyi Rih Metrotram use LHT due to tramcars have doors only on right side, which makes it impossible to use RHT at stations with island platforms. On the French-German border, for example, flyovers were provided so that trains moving on the left in France end up on the right in Germany and vice versa. Handedness of traffic can affect locomotive design. For the driver, visibility is good from both sides of the driving cab so the choice on which side to site the driver is less important. For example, the French SNCF Class BB 7200 is designed for using the left-hand track and therefore uses LHD.
When the design was modified for use in the Netherlands as NS Class 1600, the driving cab was not redesigned, keeping the driver on the left despite the fact that trains use the right-hand track in the Netherlands. The left/right principle in a country is followed on double track. On single track, when trains meet, the train that shall not stop uses the straight path in the turnout, which can be left or right. Double-track railways older ones, may use each track in one direction; this arrangement simplifies the signalling systems where the signalling is mechanical. Where the signals and points or rail switches are power-operated, it can be worthwhile to signal each line in both directions, so that the double line becomes a pair of single lines; this allows trains to use one track where the other track is out of service due to track maintenance work, or a train failure, or for a fast train to overtake a slow train. Most crossing loops are not regarded as double-track though they consist of multiple tracks.
If the crossing loop is long enough to hold several trains, to allow opposing trains to cross without slowing down or stopping that may be regarded as double-track. A more modern British term for such a layout is an extended loop; the distance between the track centres makes a difference in cost and performance of a double-track line. The track centres can be as narrow and as cheap as possible, but maintenance must be done on the side. Signals for bi-directional working cannot be mounted between the tracks so must be mounted on the'wrong' side of the line or on expensive signal bridges. For standard gauge tracks the distance may be 4 metres or less. Track centres are wider on high speed lines, as pressure waves knock each other as high-speed trains pass. Track centres are usually wider on sharp curves, the length and width of trains is contingent on the minimum railway curve radius of the railway. Increasing width of track centres of 6 metres or more makes it much easier to mount signals and overhead wiring structures.
Wide centres at major bridges can have military value. It makes it harder for rogue ships and barges knocking out both bridges in the same accident. Railway lines in desert areas affected by sand dunes are sometimes built on alternate routes so that if one is covered by sand, the other are still serviceable. If the standard track centre is changed, it can take a long time for most or all tracks to be brought into line. On British lines, the space between the two running rails of a single railway track is called the "four foot", while the space between the different tracks is called the "six foot", it is not safe to stand in the gap between the tracks when trains pass by on both lines, as happened in the Bere Ferrers accident of 1917. Narrow track centres on the Liverpool and Manchester Railway contributed to a fatal accident on opening day. A US naval scientist and submarine pioneer, Captain Jacques, was killed getting out of the wrong side of a train at Hadley Wood in 1916. Narrow track centres contribute to "Second Train Coming" accidents at level crossings since it is harder to see the second train – for example, the accident at Elsenham level crossing