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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 7, Issue 2 (June 1, 1932)

Current Comments

page 17

Current Comments

Service Maintained.

Throughout the recent flood period in parts of Hawke's Bay, the Department had no difficulty in maintaing an efficient road service between Napier and Hastings. Although the road at Waitangi and the Washout was under water for three days, not one trip of the service's ordinary time-table was missed. The only dislocation that was experienced was the result of one bus going off the road at Waitangi. It was immediately replaced by another bus, however, which took the passengers and brought them to Napier only a few minutes behind time.

* * *

Farmers and Motor-cars.

An interesting sidelight on the present economic conditions was provided at the weekly fat stock market at Westfield (states an exchange). For some time the long lines of cars parked at the side of the road during sales have been growing shorter, and the number of carts, buggies, and traps has been growing larger. Many of the old vehicles brought out show signs of having been left in the weather by their owners, who probably did not anticipate ever using them again. At the same time, the popularity of hacks is also increasing.

* * *

Britain has World's Fastest Train. 6,008 Miles in 5,2331/2 Minutes by G.W.R.

From information to hand it is established that in the first three months of its record-breaking run the world's fastest train, the “Cheltenham Flyer,” of the Great Western Railway, has covered 6,008 miles in 5,2331/2 minutes. This is only 71/2 minutes over the total booked schedule allowed for the 78 daily runs, and it is a remarkable tribute to the consistent running under difficult conditions due to signal checks and reduced speeds at points en route owing to alterations to the line. The booked time for the 771/2 miles Swindon to Paddington is 67 minutes. On the first three runs, on September 14, 15 and 16, the running time was reduced to just under the hour. On the Monday it was 59 mins. 38 secs.; on the Wednesday, 58 mins. 20 secs.; the latter establishing a world's speed start to stop record with steam as the motive power.

The train, by its speed, consistency, and extremely smooth running, has attracted world-wide attention and reflected to the credit of British railway prestige abroad. It has been filmed from the track, the air, and the train itself; photographed at nearly every bridge and mile of its route, and has been pictured in every part of the globe. Jig-saw puzzles and Christmas cards have been made of it, and, shortly, every passenger travelling on the train will have, if he so wishes, affixed to his baggage a label reproduction of the train itself. Famous speed aces, foreign railway representatives and representatives of nearly every nation, are numbered among the 8,000 passengers who can claim the distinction of travelling on this, the fastest train in the world, and many have made the journey to Swindon or Cheltenham for just this purpose. Throughout its route the train comes under the company's own system of automatic train control, which has played an important part in the timekeeping, especially during foggy weather.

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