Ilford Depot 2013 – 2017

As part of Crossrail’s £50m upgrade for Ilford Depot, TICS (via VolkerFitzpatrick Limited) was awarded the Design, Installation, Test and Commissioning of the Signalling Systems.

The Ilford Depot provides stabling for up to 12 trains from Crossrail rolling stock along the north-eastern section of the Crossrail network.

The main works included:

  • Provision of 10 No new stabling sidings
  • Provision of 2 No stabling / bypass roads
  • Demolition of workshop B, the existing paint shop, mess building and Shunters Cabin
  • A replacement paint shop and new Logistics and Stores building for Bombardier Transportation
  • Crossrail accommodation building for CTOC staff and including a new depot control room
  • Modification to Bombardier Transportation Workshop A to reinstate 2 rail lines, create a ‘swimming pool’ type maintenance area to roads 3, 4 and 5, extend roads 6 and 7 at the east end, install a new corrosion/welding booth, provide a new roof and side cladding
  • Infrastructure upgrades, utilities connections and provision of traction power throughout via 25kV overhead lines.

The Ilford Depot
The works were carried out in six stages with TICS construction works in Stage 1 and Stage 6.

Stage 1 was split into two – Stage 1b was a minor alteration to two signals and Stage 1e was incorporation of the paint shop depot protection interface requirement with the existing signalling.

Stage 6 was carried out during a 3 ½ month blockade followed by a further 5 month of a PC Boundary environment to allow installation, pre-testing to be completed with the final commissioning undertaken during a single stage possession arrangement at the beginning of May 2017.

The main works consisted of new signal control and decommissioning of existing depot control, this included the following:

  • New Route Relay Interlocking for the control of the new Crossrail stabling sidings within Ilford Yard Depot
  • Provision of conventional control & Indication panel (Turn / Push) to allow the Depot Controller to set routes utilising the entrance / exit methodology
  • Provision of interface controls between interlocking & ‘lockouts’ Depot protection system
  • Provision of interface controls between new interlocking and Workshop ‘A’ (east) depot protection system
  • Provision of indication of Workshop ‘A’ (west) Depot protection system
  • Provision of indications of paint shop Depot protection system
  • Transfer of Acceptance / Despatch controls from Shunters Cabin to Ilford depot control room
  • Transfer of GAF workshop depot protection controls & indications from Shunters Cabin to Ilford depot control Room. (works undertaken and tested by Beck & Pollitzer)
  • Provision of Power operated POE (Clamp locks) within Ilford Depot
  • Provision of Ground Position Light signals (LED) within Ilford Depot
  • Provision of Track Circuits (MVDC) within Ilford Depot
  • Provision of TPWS at selected signals
  • Provision of revised speed board signage within Ilford Depot
  • Provision of Notice Boards within Ilford Depot

All works with the exception of LB Foster for the Panel installation were all carried out using our in house TICS Design, Installation and Testing resources, coupled with dedicated project manager this project has been a labour of love for many many years.

With a value in excess of £5m, this is quite an achievement for a specialist organisation like TICS.

S&C Track Renewals 1998 – Present

Over 120 point ends, associated and tracks and Signals commissioned in 2016/2017 alone

TICS’s core business has been in support of the National S&C renewals framework providers since 1998, from the early days of Centrac in the 90s onto Jarvis in the 00s to Babcock and the newly formed S&C Alliances in CP4 and CP5.  We provide our clients with quality services in possession critical time periods. TICS pride ourselves at getting the job done and getting trains running on Monday morning.

We believe we are intrinsically linked to both the Southern S&C Alliance (Colas and NWR) and the Northern S&C Alliance (AmeySersa and NWR) and pride ourselves on re-enforcing our close partnership and working together on continuous improvement and meeting the ultimate clients goal of making their pound go further.

We deliver track supporting signalling works UK wide, focusing on teamwork and complex programme delivery, finding ways to work around problems and create solutions rather than barriers. Our expertise makes us the number one choice for both these well respected clients.

2016/2017 Sites

  • Peterborough
  • Holbeck
  • Neville Hill
  • Church Lane
  • Hinksey
  • Hambleton
  • Belford
  • Sandy South
  • March East
  • Acton Branch
  • Sileby
  • Trent East Junction
  • Saltburn Junction
  • Purfleet
  • Wembley Central
  • Mountsorrel
  • Bridge Junction
  • Thirsk
  • Green Lane
  • Romford
  • Oxenholme
  • Leagrave

Level Crossing Renewals 2010 – Present

TICS has delivered the signalling design, test and commission contracts for many AHB, AOCL+B CCTV and OD controlled level crossings.

  • Level Crossing renewals in Hull region to Hessle signal box at Chalk Lane and St Georges Road
  • East Lancs 3 x Conversions – Brierfield, Huncoat and Low Moor– BAM Nuttall
  • 10 x AOCL+B – Network Rail RAM Direct
  • Kings Lynn – Manned Barrier to Automatic operation – May Gurney
  • Tranche 11 – Auto barrier to CCTV/OD control – Babcock
  • Ashtead & Lingwood LX – Kier Construction
  • Downham Market – Kier Construction

We pride ourselves at having many qualified and competent level crossing specialist engineers capable of providing both Design, Installation, Test and Commissioning activities across the UK.

Killingholme Turnback Sidings 2015 – 2016

The Port of Immingham is the UK’s largest port by tonnage, handling up to 55 million tonnes, including nearly 20 million tonnes of oil and 10 million tonnes of coal.

Associated British Ports (ABP) wanted to increase the capacity of their Humber International Terminal (HIT) at Immingham by constructing a new biomass bunker and providing a new run round loop with a turnback facility.

GRAHAM Construction was appointed to undertake the design and construction of a major new facility for importing, storing, and onward transfer of renewable fuels (wood pellets).

The port was already the UK’s largest handler of dry bulk cargo, and the development of the Immingham Renewable Fuels Terminal (IRFT) has put Immingham at the forefront of the developing supply chain in renewable power generation from biomass. The 11.5-acre facility will be a fully automated bulk-handling terminal that will handle biomass for the region’s power generating industry.

The terminal has the capability of handling around three million tonnes each year, and is able to store up to 100,000 tonnes of wood pellets. TICS was awarded the contract to design, install, test and commission the signalling requirements to facilitate this expansion.

The signalling works comprise the following:

  • Installation and testing of new location cabinets
  • Installation of a new REB
  • Alterations to existing location cabinets, relay rooms and signal box
  • Installation of 4’ and trackside equipment
  • Running in and termination of line-side and tail cables

Points building works were completed on site and the main commissioning took place in early 2015.

Balcombe Re-signalling 2015 – 2016

The Brighton line between Balcombe Tunnel Junction and Copyhold Junction is the southern equivalent of the Welwyn bottleneck on the East Coast main line. From just south of Three Bridges, the line reduces from four tracks to two through the tunnel and then over the Ouse Valley viaduct before opening out again to four tracks into Haywards Heath station.

The line was resignalled in 1982 under the control of the new Three Bridges Power Box, which covers from Croydon to Brighton with fringe boxes on the various branches. The technology used route relay interlockings, tungsten bulb signals, reed track circuits and a traditional FDM (frequency division multiplex) system for remote control of the relay rooms and indications. The twin-track sections at Balcombe and between Haywards Heath and Preston Park, near to Brighton, were equipped with SIMBIDS (Simplified Bi-Directional Signalling) as a means of allowing trains to run on the wrong line under restricted long block section conditions. This proved to be troublesome and had adverse safety implications as it was not possible to inform staff reliably that trains were running ‘wrong road’.

The facility was therefore never properly used. Now over thirty years old, the general condition of the signalling was showing its age and renewal was due.

The Balcombe area suffers from capacity issues and increasing capacity to six trains an hour in bi-directional travel has been essential to meet the increasing demands of the infrastructure but also to increase access to undertake essential infrastructure maintenance throughout the route without the need to disrupt large sections of the Railway. Balcombe tunnel is very wet and in poor condition. In recent times, masonry falls have needed urgent attention with the line being closed for lengthy periods, resulting in considerable disruption to train services with a lengthy diversion for through services or bus substitution.

A metal shielding has been attached to the tunnel roof, primarily to divert water away from the tracks and into the drainage channels and also to provide some protection against any further masonry dislodgement. The result is a decision to resignal this section of line to permit full reversible working and to provide more resilient equipment against the effects of lying ground water. It also will allow six trains an hour in each direction when reversible signalling is in operation and permit access to undertake essential infrastructure maintenance across the route without the need to disrupt this section of railway in its entirety.

The development of the scheme has been protracted with a number of false starts. Since the project involved only a partial resignalling, with the interlockings at Three Bridges and Haywards Heath being retained, the design work would have to delve into existing records in order to modify the relay circuitry. A contract to carry out the work was awarded to Kier as main contractor. Although a new name in signalling, the company has, in fact, a depth of experience in the discipline following its acquisition of May Gurney. The company has also undertaken signalling projects in East Anglia, namely Ely West Curve, Bury St Edmonds to Chippenham Junction, Ely to Peterborough track circuit replacement and Kings Lynn signalling renewals.

Although Kier has a growing in-house design resource, it also partners with other companies to provide additional expertise. One such relationship is with TICS Rail Signalling, based in Doncaster. Having worked together on various projects for nine years, the combined skills of Kier and TICS allow them to provide an enhanced product capable of tackling much larger signalling renewals schemes, offering Network Rail a combined signalling design facility, signalling installation delivery units and the substantial works testing teams provided by TICS.

The work entailed in letting the contract to permit full reversible working on both lines, Network Rail originally anticipated that only the track circuits and signal heads, and the associated wiring, would need replacing with the trackside location cases themselves being reused. However, a detailed survey showed that this was not feasible and thus the scheme was expanded to a complete renewal of equipment over the 9km section. The track layout is unchanged and thus the existing point machines were kept and also some signal gantries.

Renewals include:

  • Replacement of all signal heads and banner repeaters with LED equivalents supplied by Unipart Dorman;
  • New signals installed for full reversible working;
  • Upgrading existing signal gantries to modern standards with ladders and walkways;
  • Provision of new lightweight signal posts and gantries supplied by Collis Engineering;
  • Embankment retention work and trough route upgrade where necessary;
  • Replacement of track circuits with Bombardier TI21 (EBI Track 200) type;
  • Additional TPWS loops supplied by Vortok;
  • Renewal of the FDM system with Siemens Westplex vital transmission system;
  • A new control panel and mimic display section in Three Bridges PSB supplied by TEW Group (now part of LB Foster);
  • New copper lineside cabling and, where necessary, new lineside locations; » Upgrade to the lineside 650V power supply distribution;
  • Modifications to the telecom facilities for additional SPTs and a new bearer for the Westplex remote control system;
  • Modification to impedance bonds for traction return current and associated bonding;
  • Provision of a dual train detection system in Balcombe tunnel using Frauscher axle counters.

Report of Balcombe project kindly reproduced from the The Rail Engineer

North Doncaster Chord 2012 – 2014

TICS is proud to have carried out the signalling design, installation and testing works associated with North Doncaster Chord as part of the NDC Alliance.

The aim of the Project was to reduce performance delay on the ECML between Shaftholme Junction and Hambleton Junction by the provision of a flyover across the East Coast Main Line (ECML). The new flyover joins the Skellow and Knottingley lines providing an alternative route for freight trains away from the ECML.

This involved the provision of a 3km double track railway crossing over the ECML at Shaftholme Junction and the provision of 8 new point ends in two new junctions controlled by In-bearer clamp lock point operating equipment. Joan Croft level crossing was closed as part of the scheme and a new road built over the ECML.

Shaftholme RRI interlocking was altered to accommodate the planned changes and the new layout shall is to be controlled by Doncaster PSB, requiring extensive alterations to the existing NX panel. Norton Gate Box was also amended detailing the layout changes.