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New Class 350-3s for London Midland to enter service early

Some of London Midland’s new Siemens-built Class 350/3s are coming into service on Monday, earlier than the original December plan. 

Some of the £62m fleet of 10 new 110mph four-car Desiros will be used to lengthen the busiest morning and evening peak services into and out of London Euston, before the new winter timetable comes into effect on Sunday 14 December. 

Three morning services – the 06.18 Northampton-London Euston, the 07.15 Bletchley-London Euston and the 08.26 Tring-London Euston – will all be extended from the current eight-car formation to 12-car – providing 690 seats on each service. 

The 15.49 London Euston-Northampton service will increase from four cars to eight, providing an extra 230 seats, and the 18.29 London Euston-Northampton train will now be a 12-car formation. 

The new Siemens Class 350/3 Desiro trains will join the existing Class 350/1 and 350/2s maintained by Siemens at the Kings Heath train care facility in Northampton and operated by London Midland on the West Coast Main Line. 

Rail minister Claire Perry said: “It is fantastic news that London Midland’s customers will start to enjoy this much-needed extra capacity earlier than expected, and I am looking forward to seeing the remaining trains start running from December.” 

The original order was placed in 2012, alongside the order for First TransPennine Express’s Class 350/4s. The trains were built at Siemens’ plant in Krefeld, Germany, and tested at the company’s test track in Wildenrath. 

The DfT agreed the new date for the introduction into service of some of the new trains at a meeting in early September. 

Patrick Verwer, managing director of London Midland, said: “We are committed to improving the overall journey experience for our passengers, and adding more carriages to some of our busiest train services over the next few weeks will make a real difference to our London-bound commuters.

“This investment will also allow us to deliver more passenger services on the Cross City line between Birmingham and Redditch from December our busiest commuter route in the West Midlands.” 

Kevin Tribley, chief operating officer of Angel Trains, which is leasing the Siemens-built trains to London Midland, added that since privatisation, “we have put £3.5bn in the UK rail industry, making us one of the largest investors in the industry”. 

RTM reported back in February 2012: “12 of the carriages London Midland will receive will help deliver an internal rolling stock cascade that will provide additional capacity on the Cross-City Line in Birmingham. The frequency of peak and off-peak services between Birmingham and Redditch will be increased from two trains to three trains per hour from December 2014. 

“The trains will also enable electric services from Birmingham New Street to be extended to Bromsgrove from May 2015, assuming that the plan to relocate Bromsgrove Station is confirmed and electrification is completed on schedule [Editor’s note: Work began in March 2014, with electrification to be complete by summer 2016]. 

“The other 28 London Midland carriages will provide faster peak journeys and extra capacity on services into London Euston from December 2014. Peak journey times between London and Northampton will be reduced by up to 10 minutes and the services between Milton Keynes and London will be reduced by up to seven minutes. London Midland will also be able to run three additional am peak services and five additional pm peak services into and out of London Euston.” 

(Image from left to right: Steve Scrimshaw, managing director of the Rail Systems business at Siemens; Patrick Verwer, managing director of London Midland; and Kevin Tribley, chief operating officer at Angel Trains.) 

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


Ram D Gupta   07/10/2014 at 08:21

Great achievement. I belong to INDIA. Even DMRC (Delhi Metro) has only 8 car formation. Ram D Gupta +919535104708

Jak Jaye   29/07/2016 at 14:24

Why put more coaches on the Tring-Euston services? more are needed for the Crewe stopping ones 4 coaches to Crewe is a joke

Ciaran Weir   30/05/2017 at 09:24

@Jak short platforms in north staffordshire mean 4 coaches only.

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