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August 2002
Rail Link Bus and Train Co-ordination
In the brave new world of integrated transport, some rail companies have contracted bus operators to provide dedicated links to railway stations.   Co-ordination of this sort is already common-place in many parts of mainland Europe, but yet it seems almost groundbreaking in the UK.   This article gives an overview of what is perhaps the beginnings of a quiet revolution.
Reading Transport 239 (R37GNW) about to leave Reading railway station on the 01h30 departure to Gatwick Airport in March 2002.   Thames Trains maintain this twice nightly service to provide a 24 hour timetable between Reading and Gatwick.
Stagecoach United Counties Volvo/Berkhoff 164 (6253VC), a former Thames Transit vehicle, at Luton Airport in June 2001.   It is on a Virgin Trains service to Milton Keynes where it connects with West Coast Main Line routes. The Borders Rail Link has existed for many years to connect Carlisle to Galashiels and then to Edinburgh.   First Borders 39 (N539VSA), an Optare/Mercedes originally from Aberdeen, stands at Carlisle rail station in December 2001. Stagecoach were one of the innovators of the new breed of rail link routes.   This Dennis Dart - Stagecoach South 5005 (T905XCD) - is at the Hythe terminus on the connecting service to South West Trains at Southampton in July 2001.
 Rail Link
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Virigin Trains connections at Milton Keynes are documented here
Thames Trains operate several 24 hour services
Hampshire and Stagecoach are keen on coordination
Scotrail provide information about Borders Rail Link
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