Rolling stock

31.01.17

WMR unveils new-look livery designs for West Midlands rolling stock

New-look livery designs have been released for how commuter trains in the West Midlands could look when a new operator takes over the franchise in October this year.

The franchisee will run services on the regional network on behalf of the DfT and West Midlands Rail (WMR), a consortium of 14 local authorities. Currently the management of the franchise is the sole responsibility of central government, but this is being devolved locally under a joint management scheme in a similar manner to the Northern and TPE contracts.

Although the finer details of the new livery will be agreed with the franchise winner, the design is expected to be closely modelled on the images released by WMR.

Cllr Mark Winnington, chair of WMR and Staffordshire County Council’s cabinet member for economic growth, said: “We felt it was important to have a distinct brand and identity for local trains and we are extremely pleased the DfT feels the same way.

“We believe that having this level of involvement in the management of our local network will bring real benefits not just for passengers but also for local businesses.”

Two train companies are currently in the running for the West Midlands franchise: London and West Midlands Railway Limited, a subsidiary of Govia Limited (a joint venture between Keolis and Go-Ahead Group) and West Midlands Trains Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Abellio with East Japan Railway Company and Mitsui & Co Limited as minority partners. In June last year, MTR Corporation West Midlands unexpectedly withdrew its bid to take over the West Midlands rail franchise.

Improvements for passengers set to be delivered under the new franchise include extra capacity, more frequent services and free wi-fi. The DfT noted that the new franchise would also provide capacity for an additional 20,000 passengers at peak times.

It added that it requires a franchisee who will, by the end of 2021, refurbish all pre-1995 rolling stock that will form part of the train fleet after the end of 2022.

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Comments

Pdeaves   31/01/2017 at 11:15

Eugh, that looks terrible. Let's, before it's too late, revisit it and make it look more professional. Just because it's possible to use weird colours and markings doesn't mean it's essential to use weird colours and markings.

Mark Hare   31/01/2017 at 11:25

Pretty sure the livery won't look like this at launch. Certainly won't have orange cab fronts at least. Apart from that I don't think it looks too bad.

LTR1980   31/01/2017 at 11:33

The livery portrayed is only a concept livery devised at the launch of the West Mids Rail and, what every incarnation of the livery - with the concept based upon a Cadburyesque heritage - would only apply to the the DMUS inc 139 and the 323. The 350s would not be treated as they are network wide, also the 319s wouldn't be. Given that is no longer a requirement to have yellow ends, one one actually hope a rethinks on the concept will be done. It must be noted that the DfT are not be giving full devolution in the first instance this will be at a future not next franchise, as is the case with Northern and TPE. This next one is a partnership approach.

Mark Hare   31/01/2017 at 11:52

Indeed there is no longer a requirement to have full yellow ends providing the stock has headlights compliant with the TSI for Locomotives and Passenger Rolling Stock. I doubt the headlights on the 323s and the like have the necessary spec and so yellow ends will be required.

Rupe   31/01/2017 at 12:06

It does look rather wasp-like to me - colours designed to say "Avoid me as I can be bad-tempered and sting you". Not really the best signal to send your potential customers. Southern Railways colour of near British Racing Green is still my favourite - tho perhaps trains will go the way of cars and increasingly become silver but with safety stripes...

Lee   31/01/2017 at 16:27

Someone call the livery police!!! Designed by a graphic designer who lacks respects for 3D design and has no visual literacy.

J Webster   31/01/2017 at 17:17

Designed by a Graphic Designer who knows nothing about Railway Safety Requirements!

LTR1980   31/01/2017 at 20:40

Indeed so the agency used to concept up the design, like most whom gravitate to public transport actually have no understanding of the industry

Chris@Chesterfield   31/01/2017 at 20:49

Drab as the DfT's standard 'grey with garish doors' livery is, its getting to the point where I'd prefer to see it than more of these examples that seem to have neither coherence nor flair. There are of course some designs which are stunning and others which are not too shy to simply copy their main features .... In the meantime, can anyone remember how many liveries trains in the West Midlands trains have had? Isn't the weight of the paint getting to the point where it will reduce the passenger capacity? Is it in excess of the number of Transport Secretarys we've had?

Henry Law   01/02/2017 at 05:16

Most passengers wouldn't care if the carriages were painted matt black, though black can look quite smart; it has been the standard colour scheme for passenger stock on the Swedish state railway's (SJ) for the past few years. More to the point with suburban stock is the continued absence of retracting under-door steps. Given the number of falls between platform and train since the introduction of LUL's S-stock, I would have thought that attention to this hazard was overdue.

GW   02/02/2017 at 11:08

Hideous. Think again.

Andrew Gwilt   03/02/2017 at 11:12

Before London Midland took over. Silverlink Trains were operated by National Express and Silverlink County operated Semi-Fast commuter, suburban and regional services to/from London Euston and the West Midlands region (including the Birmingham area). Whilst Silverlink Metro operated metro & suburban services on the North London Line (Stratford-Richmond/Willesden Junction/Clapham Junction), non-electrified Gospel Oak-Barking "GOBLIN" Line and Watford-Euston DC Line before TfL/London Overground (LOROL) took over these routes in 2007 and the older rolling stocks (Class 150 and Class 313) were replaced by Class 378 Electrostar "Capitalstar" EMU and Class 172 Turbostar "Capitalstar" DMU rolling stocks built by Bombardier.

Mark Hare   07/02/2017 at 16:18

Fascinating Andrew. But what does that have to do with the new livery proposed for the West Midlands fleet?

Andrew Gwilt   10/02/2017 at 14:00

Well I still like the London Midland livery Mark Hare. But the new livery for a new franchise seems ok but not as nice. Silverlink Trains livery was more nicer.

John Gilbert   16/02/2017 at 21:14

Please retain the London Midland green livery, or if we MUST be different then replace the green with maroon. Present plan looks hideous. Just because one CAN design a hideous livery doesn't mean that one should do so!

Matthew Longstaff   14/03/2017 at 13:44

It's garish, but it's not as bad as Firstgroup 'barbie' livery. That would be impossible.

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