Rail Express July 2018

RAIL EXPRESS is Britain's favourite modern rail enthusiast title. Undoubtedly the best for modern traction photography, the magazine keeps readers informed and entertained with undiluted coverage of Britain's railways in the diesel and electric era. First produced in 1996, RE has set a new standard for the hobby, with a clean design, high quality paper and the best reproduction. January 2008 saw the magazine relaunched in an innovative 'supersize' format, showing off the ground-breaking contents to the best advantage. Every issue includes news and analysis covering the present day railway scene, plus the latest preservation developments. Also inside: RAIL EXPRESS Modeler - Diesel & Electric era modeling magazine

United Kingdom
Mortons Media Group, Ltd
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12 Ausgaben

in dieser ausgabe

2 Min
don’t provide the ammo

OUR railways are often used as an easy stick with which to beat the Government or those in charge. National media regularly make headlines with claims of rail services being ‘too full’ or ‘too expensive’ in unfair comparisons with motoring or air travel – overlooking that these are problems essentially caused by two decades of rising passenger numbers rather than any cynical secret plan to treat travellers badly. Sometimes, however, the railways deserve the criticism and the weeks since the May timetable change have been just such an occasion, with Northern and TSGN being particularly guilty. While the first day’s delays and cancellations could have been put down to teething troubles, that day became days and then days became weeks of disruption. Things seemed only to get worse rather than better until…

5 Min
train operators fail to deliver summer timetable change

BOTH Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) and Arriva Trains Northern (ATN) have been heavily criticised since the May 20 timetable change as they have been unable to deliver the promised new services, with hundreds of services cancelled each day. Both operators have suffered from Network Rail project overruns, which have prevented the necessary driver training for the new pattern of services. As a result, Northern introduced an emergency timetable from June 4 that saw the temporary cancellation of 165 services each day, including all trains on the Windermere branch. The new timetable saw GTR start running through services from Peterborough and Cambridge on the Great Northern route through the Thameslink core to Gatwick Airport, Horsham and Brighton. Prior to the May 20 change, some services had been using the new route through the…

3 Min
timetable change results in a lot of ‘firsts’

THE radical shake-up of rail timetables on May 20, which saw many routes and services totally recast and the completion of some electrification projects, brought with it a number of DMU and EMU workings on routes they have never operated before. The first four of 16 Class 170s, which are gradually being transferred from ScotRail to Northern, are now in service on the Harrogate line. No. 170477 had undertaken gauging tests at various stations on the route on May 13. Three of the four units are diagrammed to operate on weekdays – two of these work between Leeds and Knaresborough, with the third set spending most of the day operating on the Leeds-Harrogate-York circuit. Following full refurbishment and application of Northern livery at Arriva Traincare, Crewe, No. 170476 returned to Neville Hill on…

3 Min
lner brand revived for east coast

THE Virgin Trains East Coast (VTEC) franchise is to end early on June 24. Operations will be transferred to the ‘Operator of Last Resort’ SNC Lavalin, which was formerly Interfleet, the train engineering arm of the BR InterCity sector. The pre-Nationalisation LNER name is to be adopted as the brand, although the colour scheme will remain based on the red Virgin livery rather than the traditional green and blue colours associated with the LNER, despite a budget of £8 million being provided for a livery change. A decision has been taken by the Department for Transport that the brand will continue to be used after the train operating company reverts to the private sector in 2020 – a decision that has also been made in respect of the Great Western Railway, which…

6 Min
in brief

MODIFIED ‘385’ TRIALS TESTS began on May 21 of Class 385 No. 385004 fitted with new style windscreens in an attempt to resolve the reported ‘fishbowl’ effect that has prevented the much needed units from entering service on the main route between Edinburgh and Glasgow. The problem was said to be that drivers could sometimes see double signals through the original curved windscreen, especially at night, but the new flatter version seems to have solved the problem. The ‘385s’ should have entered service in 2017, but the new windscreen can now be rolled out and fleet and driver training recommence for service introduction in the summer. Late introduction of the EMUs has had knock-on effects with other operators such as Northern that were due to benefit from stock cascades. CHINNOR INTERCHANGE TO OPEN IN…

2 Min
keolisamey wins wales and borders

THE Welsh Government has awarded a 15-year contract to the KeolisAmey joint venture to operate the Wales and Borders rail franchise incorporating the future South Wales Metro. Rail services will transfer from the current operator Arriva Trains Wales on October 14, giving a contract length until 2033. The successful bidder currently operates the Docklands Light Railway in London and the Greater Manchester Metrolink tram system, and is a partner with the Go-Ahead Group in the GTR and Southeastern franchises. KeolisAmey was preferred to the MTR Corporation, which was the only other bidder left after the withdrawal of Abellio and the current operator Arriva from the competition. The deal was confirmed on June 4 after a necessary ‘standstill’ period for objections. Keolis has promised a transformative new rail service for Wales and its borders…