Electric commuter trains arrive in Essex

Posted on 05 Feb 2020 and read 709 times
Electric commuter trains arrive in EssexThe first of Greater Anglia’s new Bombardier electric trains has arrived in the region, ready to start a series of safety and performance tests in Essex, Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire and Suffolk (www.greateranglia.co.uk).

The five-carriage electric train, designed and built at Bombardier’s Derby factory (www.bombardier.com), was delivered to Greater Anglia’s Ilford depot on 14 January.

A number of Greater Anglia train drivers had ‘test drives’ on the new trains at Network Rail’s national test facility in Leicestershire, before testing them on the Greater Anglia network.

Bombardier has now built around a third of the carriages that will make up 111 new electric trains (due to run on commuter lines to Liverpool Street from Essex, Ipswich, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire).

The new trains are all longer, with more seats, plug and USB sockets, air conditioning, better passenger information screens and improved accessibility features.

They are also ‘greener’, being 40% lighter than previous trains and featuring regenerative braking; this delivers energy back into the electrical supply network rather than wasting it ‘through heat’, as in conventional systems.

Ian McConnell, Greater Anglia franchise and programme director, said: “It is fantastic to have one of these new Bombardier trains on our patch, and our test drivers have been very impressed with them; they said it was like going from a bottom of the range small car to a Rolls-Royce.

“We are confident that our customers will be equally pleased with the quality of the new trains.”

Kevin Tribley, CEO of Angel Trains, which is procuring and financing the 665 Bombardier carriages that make up the 111 trains, said: “The modernisation of Greater Anglia’s network is a major boost to the future of the UK rail industry and the communities this network serves.

“This project — one of the largest private investments in rolling stock in the last 20 years — reiterates our on-going commitment to creating the railway of the future that modern Britain deserves.”

The first of these Bombardier electric trains are expected to enter passenger service this spring, and they should all be in service by spring 2021.

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