Talk:Earley railway station

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No disused railway at Earley[edit]

It has been suggested (by Redrose64) that Earley railway station was once on a disused line into Reading Southern railway station. This is a misunderstanding. Reading Southern was the original terminal of the existing line, and when that station closed, the line was diverted into the adjacent Reading railway station. If there was a disused line at all, it was no more than the last few hundred yards of the approach to Reading Southern, and it diverged from the existing line a good two miles on the Reading side of Earley station. There has only ever been one railway line through Earley station, and that is the one that is still open. Modifying the service info box to remove misleading suggestion to the contrary. -- chris_j_wood (talk) 16:23, 3 February 2017 (UTC)

@Chris j wood: I'm not suggesting that Earley railway station "was once on a disused line into Reading Southern railway station". This is a misunderstanding on your part. My revert (which you then reverted contrary to WP:BRD) was not about whether the line through Earley is open or closed - it's about the line connecting Earley with Reading Southern.
As you know, routeboxes indicate the stations to either side of the one which is the subject of the article; besides the two stations, there are also two lines. There are three situations, each with a pair of templates:
  • If both of these lines are open for passenger services, and both of the stations are open as well, we use the templates {{Rail start}} or {{Rail insert}}
  • if both of these lines are entirely open for passenger services, but one or both of the stations are closed, we use the templates {{Historical Rail Start}} or {{Historical Rail Insert}};
  • if either one or both of these lines is wholly or partially closed to passenger services (regardless of whether the stations are open or closed), we use the templates {{Disused rail start}} or {{Disused Rail Insert}}.
Even though the length of closed line (45 chains according to this RCH junction diagram, or 990 yards) is less than a quarter of the length of the line between Earley and the junction (2 miles 26 chains, or 4092 yards), it's still not possible to run a train over the full length of the route: so as a route it's closed, and so we use the "disused" template, not the "historical" one. --Redrose64 🌹 (talk) 00:19, 4 February 2017 (UTC)
@Redrose64:: Well if that is the norm, I can only say it is exceedingly misleading. The effect is that a minor route realignment (the site of the old platforms of the Reading Southern station is no more the 50 meters from the current platforms 4-6 that are used by today's trains, and the site of the Reading Southern station building now lies under the 1980s era station building of Reading station) results in a wholly invented disused railway appearing several miles away in Earley. That seems to me to be contrary to common sense and a clear case of the tail wagging the dog. I've no problem with the norm where there is a genuine abandoned route that is no longer available in the pragmatic sense, but that isn't the case here; whether a train terminates in the old Reading Southern station or in a differently named station that occupies (at least in part) the same footprint is neither here nor there in terms of practical route availability.
Please note that I'm not suggesting that we shouldn't explain the diversion in the article, and indeed besides reverting the change to the service box I have also explained all this and more in the article's history section text. But for such a subtle change, a box template is simply insufficiently nuanced to convey the change without doing more harm than good in explaining the situation to our readers.
Incidentally, WP:BRD is optional, and given the text changes I made and my initiation of discussion above, I feel my re-revert was entirely reasonable. -- chris_j_wood (talk) 16:01, 4 February 2017 (UTC)

Question - was there ever a train service directly from Earley to Reading (Southern)? If the answer is yes, then the use of the historical line template is appropriate. Mjroots (talk) 09:54, 6 February 2017 (UTC)

@Mjroots:: Yes there was once a train service that went to Reading (Southern); the same service that has subsequently been diverted about 50 meters to the right about 2 miles away from Earley to serve the main Reading station. I wouldn't object to the use of a historical route template (if such a thing exists) but it is the use of term 'disused line' that worries me. To me (and I suspect most casual readers) this brings up the image of there being somewhere near Earley station where there used to be tracks and no longer are. And there simply isn't. -- chris_j_wood (talk) 15:40, 6 February 2017 (UTC)
Personally I think that this "line open station closed" style gives the box too much work to do and is confusing. We coould do without it and leave such details to the text. Britmax (talk) 11:18, 26 February 2017 (UTC)