Latest Rail News

17.09.14

First class 319s arrive in Liverpool for driver training

The first two Class 319s have arrived in Liverpool for driver training as part of the electrification scheme on the line to Manchester.

The four-car trains, cascaded north from the Thameslink route, are now based at Allerton depot, which was “re-energised” by Network Rail for electric trains from 7 September.

Northern Rail has been using the trains for driver training since last week on the line between Allerton and Crewe.

The trains will start carrying passengers on the newly-electrified Liverpool-Manchester route via Eccles and Huyton from December, with a further 12 trains to follow over the next six months.

Network Rail’s principal sponsor for the north west, Martin Jurkowski, told RTM recently: “There’s a lot going on collectively between us [and Northern] – driver training, depot electrification, and so on – for that to happen.”

Electrification will increase speeds on the line from the current top of 75mph to 90mph, and the new four-car trains will double the passenger capacity of the current diesel units in operation.

The arrival of the Class 319s, built in the late 1980s by BREL at York, will deliver an extra 3,000 seats for passengers in the north-west during the peak.

RTM understands some refurbishments are taking place, including of the trains’ customer information systems – more on this in our next edition.

The latest cascade coincides with the 184th anniversary of the Liverpool & Manchester Railway, which when it opened on 15 September 1830, was the world’s first inter-city double track passenger railway.

Tell us what you think – have your say below or email opinion@railtechnologymagazine.com

Comments

Neil Birch   17/09/2014 at 21:17

There are 3 now at allerton, I was the driver of the 1st one to go from Liverpool South parkway to platform 11 at today. I'm driving one tomorrow leaving allerton at 12:17

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