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13.02.15

Alstom opens new bogie overhaul facility

Alstom has officially opened its new bogie facility in the north west, which will be used to overhaul a variety of train fleets. 

As part of the company’s industrialisation strategy in the region, the facility is based in Alstom’s traincare centre in Longsight and is already in action as part of the fourth heavy overhaul of the Pendolino fleet. 

Opened by Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, the centre is capable of overhauling up to 22 Pendolino bogie sets, which incorporate a complex tilt mechanism, every week. 

Terence Watson, president of Alstom UK, said: “Alstom has a long history in the north west, with major industrial sites in Preston, Liverpool and Chester, as well as in Manchester. 

“The opening of this facility continues to show just how important the area is to us and is a continuation of our investment in the area, having spent £40m over the last five years improving our facilities, as well as the importance of our local suppliers, such as Cairns Cross, Lucchini and Faiveley, which have been vital in delivering this capability for the north west.” 

As well as the Virgin Trains’ Pendolino fleet, which was built by Alstom, the workshop is also set up to cater for other Alstom trains, such as the Class 334s, 175s and 180s, and other manufacturers’ vehicles, such as the Class 323. 

The H4 overhaul of the Virgin Pendolino fleet, which began in January 2015 and is expected to run until March 2016, will be carried out at Alstom’s Manchester and Liverpool sites, with a total of 165 people employed to undertake all engineering, operational and supply chain activities across both locations. 

During the work, a total of 56 trains, consisting of 574 Pendolino vehicles, will be overhauled, which will include 1,148 bogies; 3,692 interior and exterior doors; and 1.2 million consumables being replaced. 

Other systems and components overhauled during the work include heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems, external doors, brake indicators, disabled toilet doors, pantographs, transformers, and traction control. 

Additionally, around 60 new roles have been created as a result of the work being undertaken at the new facility. 

Watson said: “This new workshop has been specially developed as a result of our experience and learning from the overhauls we’ve carried out over the years and it is designed to optimise mileage between overhauls and to increase fleet availability.” 

(Image: Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, and Mike Hulme, Alstom’s MD of Trains and Modernisation) 

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