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Eversholt Rail launches Class 321 demonstrator

The upgraded Class 321 demonstrator launches today at Liverpool Street Station.

Eversholt Rail is testing new features from a major high-specification refurbishment, in partnership with Abellio Greater Anglia and Wabtec.

The four-car unit, with two carriages in suburban style and two metro-style, will run on Greater Anglia routes for a year. During this time Eversholt Rail will be collecting opinions on the upgrade at

The demonstrator includes refurbished seating, new air conditioning and heating systems, LED lighting, double glazed windows, better wheelchair access and an accessible toilet. The final scope of the fleet upgrade could include wi-fi and power sockets through the train.

eversholt lower down story

Mary Kenny, chief executive, Eversholt Rail, said the new unit is “a fantastic demonstration of the possibilities offered by quality refurbishment at an attractive cost”.

Ruud Haket, managing director, Greater Anglia, said: “With better seats, air conditioning, enhanced lighting and improved access, the train offers a step change in comfort for passengers, as well as a valuable pilot project which can provide excellent input into potential future train upgrade programmes on the Abellio Greater Anglia network.

“The Class 321 demonstrator also benefits from technical modifications which should improve its performance and reliability. We’re pleased to be working in partnership with Eversholt Rail and Wabtec on this positive initiative and we look forward to receiving passengers’ comments on the train after it enters service.”

Chris Weatherall, group managing director of Wabtec Rail, added: “Using our engineering expertise in passenger train refurbishment, Wabtec Rail has been able to demonstrate how a train interior can be transformed through fitting new seating, upgraded modern lighting, the installation of air conditioning and the creation of an improved First Class area.”

Tell us what you think – have your say below, or email us directly at [email protected]


Nonsuchmike   20/12/2013 at 19:40

Is that the best that we can do? No wonder foreign firms take all the better orders. I remember getting on a "new" train very similar to this with my six month old son 32 and a half years ago to go to the Royal Wedding.

George   17/01/2014 at 16:32

Hideous colour scheme - makes one look for the paper bags to use (!). The 2+2 arrangement is stupid in the extreme. The centre facing seats in the 3+2 arrangement are pathetically close together. The best that can be said is that it has air-con (in summer the 321's are like an oven) and it retains both toilets. The 360's seating arrangement is miles better, but then it only has one toilet and that is very poor quality. The floor is frequenetly flooded, the door doesn't work well (especially going round corners) and too frequently it is Out Of Use. Why keep 1st class? The problem on most lines, especially Greater Anglia, is LACK of seating so anything that reduces it is a stupid idea, and 1st class is one huge waste of space. The lack of grab roof level grab handles is a big minus, especially on the crowded peak time trains (and often the off peak as they are too short).

Waleed Arif   05/02/2014 at 20:51

I am not happy with the change of the windows. I want the windows to stay the same until the day all off the class 321s retire because they were born with those interesting stylish windows and that's how I want them to live forever. Apart from that every other change is okay.

(Wellhard)   07/02/2014 at 21:14

These 321s have an arrogant attitude most of the times. They may not be evil at the moment but they are the most arrogant trains in the UK. One thing that impresses me is that unlike the other classes from 2nd and 1st generations such as 313s, 314s or 310s, they were never boring. They have always been descent. Long live 321s!

Paul Meek   05/03/2014 at 20:37

Travelled on this today 1st class Norwich to London. Very disappointed the 1st class is very poor. No blinds or curtains unable to read laptop screen. No seat armrests, no seat adjustment no antimaccasars(good for seeing cleanliness) no coat hooks some seats no tables no reading lights seats ergonomicaly flawed ( I am 5 9 ) good leg room 12 degrees today air con does not appear to work. Less comfortable than existing seats. I will not travel 1st class if the above is not addressed. The designer needs to do their research. My fellow passengers ( 6 of them) were also unimpressed

Toby   22/10/2014 at 09:36

Who are these cowboys? Ryanair provides more legroom. Very very very disappointed.

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