Saturday 18 April 2015

Saturday Rail Round Up

I'm going to try and post a round up of the week's rail news each Saturday, although that is dependant on there being news to post and having the time to do it. I am extremely grateful to Harry Stanley of East Anglia Rail Scene for agreeing to let me source news from his blog and reproduce it on here. Please check his blog out and get his views up - Harry's a really nice young man and his blog deserves to flourish. So here is what has been going on the rails this week.

The most important news concerning our region is a date has been set for the Class 37/4's to replace the 47's on the Short Set running between Norwich and Yarmouth/Lowestoft. The change will take place on May 11th, with 37's top and tailing the Short Set (if it's required) until a DBSO can finally be used. Greater Anglia have also announced that the set will be used for the Summer Norwich - Yarmouth non stop specials replacing the through services from London that were "dragged" to Yarmouth by a 47. The services will also start earlier this year, on May 23rd, continuing to Sept 5th inclusive. So it seems that a sight like this will be consigned to the history books and the memory cards.

47501 with a full Intercity set at Yarmouth July 2014
The trouble with being an enthusiast is everyone wants new trains but no one wants the old ones to go - in most cases at least. one line that is going to have a dilemma is the Great western line to Wales and the West Country. Currently FGW operate HST's as have been ploughing back and forth for the best part of 40 years now. Everyone loves them - the rail equivilant of Concorde and they are still going strong. However, the thought of a fleet of 29 Hitachi AT300 bi-mode trains similar to the Javelins on HS1 is also mouthwatering. The Government will decide in May whether to go for the Hitachi's or refurbish the HST's. It will depend who wins the Election in may as to which option is taken up, but either decision will leave some pleased, some disappointed, and quite a lot a mixture of both.

A Southeastern Hitachi Javelin passes throughMaidstone Barracks Station in Kent
Remaining with Hitachi, and although announced in March I've only just found out that Hitachi are to build seventy new EMUs for Abelio Scotrail to work the Edinburgh - Glasgow - Stirling - Dunblane corridor. 46 three car and 24 two car units will be built which will allow class 170's to be redeployed, and I assume some of the current EMUs to also go elsewhere. The first seven units will be built in japan, with the remainder being built in the UK, at a purpose build factory in Newton Aycliffe in County Durham. They are expected to enter service from late 2017. The pic below os taken from, and you can read the full article here

CGI of the new Hitachi AT200's for Scotrail          pic
Six of the new Class 700's for Thameslink are being tested by Siemens in Germany as 12 coach units. The first deliveries to the new Three Bridges depot are expected in August. This pic is by Steam 60163 whose Flickr page you can access here.

New Siemens Class 700 700001 in Berlin       pic by Steam 60163
Finally in Wales Arriva have revealed the new livery for the refreshed Class 158's operating in North and mid Wales. The pic was sent into EARS by Lucas Williamson and I'm grateful for permission to use it.

158741 (I think - could be 841) in the new Arriva Wales livery    pic (c) Lucas Williamson
That's it for this week, more rail news during the week and another round up next Saturday.

1 comment:

  1. Andrew Kleissner20 April 2015 at 08:11

    Interesting that Greater Anglia state that "the traditional extra summer Saturday services will operate between Norwich and Great Yarmouth on Saturdays from 23 May until 5 September" - but neatly sidestep the dropping of through services to/from London! It would be interesting to know if they had to apply to change their "Service Level Commitment" to do this - have the through changes been mandatory in the past?