Rail Express May 2020

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
help needed...

SO much has happened in such a short space of time. When we last went to press in March, Covid-19 was still something mostly happening elsewhere. But by this press day, we are in lockdown and the virus has spread fear throughout the country – not just for now, but for the future and how we will get back to something like normal again. It has been pleasing to see how our railways have played their part keeping key workers and essential freight moving. Many passenger trains are now running mostly empty, quite rightly, but their need remains and for that reason the Government has sensibly suspended franchise contracts and taken over the burden of keeping services moving on nearly all lines. But it is arguably our heritage lines that are suffering…

4 Min
franchises suspended and replaced with direct awards

THE Government has implemented the only feasible short-term option during the coronavirus crisis of suspending passenger rail franchises and replacing them with direct awards to the existing operators. The agreements allow the Government to take responsibility for overall operational costs, and specify the level of service required to meet the need for key workers to reach employment. The retention of a small profit margin has been allowed so that TOCs can meet their own financial liabilities. Timetable frequencies on main line routes had been reduced for a second time on March 30, replacing the first cutback that was based on providing a Sunday service during the previous week. But as an example of the challenges being faced by train operating companies, passenger volume is reported to have reduced by 85% on LNER…

3 Min
lockdown hits heritage railways hard

THE 2020 programme of steam and diesel galas has been decimated as a result of the coronavirus outbreak, with many events already cancelled or postponed and others likely to be. All lines that were due to open to the public at or before Easter have had to delay doing so, and some have even closed to volunteers for the time being. For many heritage lines, this has had a major impact on their finances, and a number of appeals have been set up. The Keighley & Worth Valley Railway, for example, has launched its ‘Worth Saving’ appeal, stating “the cancellation of our passenger trains, events and the closure of our commercial outlets will hit us hard”. Presently, the line has cancelled all services and events until the end of May, so the…

2 Min
delays threatens south wales metro

IT is an agreed policy that Network Rail will transfer ownership of the Core Valley Lines (CVL) network to the Welsh Government, but the proposed handover date has now been delayed. Transport for Wales previously identified that delay in the transfer of ownership will have an impact on the construction milestones for the South Wales Metro project, which in turn will risk losing £162 million of funding support from the European Regional Development Fund towards the cost of the upgrade. The lines being sold on a freehold basis cover 85 miles of infrastructure, including buildings and operational assets. The routes are from Cardiff Bay via Cardiff Queen Street to Rhymney and Coryton, and from Cardiff Queen Street North Junction to Merthyr Tydfil, Aberdare and Treherbert – including the freight lines to Hirwaun…

3 Min
east midlands railway stops most of its ‘153’ fleet

EAST Midlands Railway took the step of removing virtually all its Class 153s from traffic over the weekend of March 21/22, following a number of service cancellations and train length reductions caused by the coronavirus pandemic, writes David Russell. Whether they return to service again before their derogations expire on December 31 is very much dependant on the impact of the virus over the coming weeks and months. No less than 14 of the ‘153s’ ran to Barrow Hill for secure storage on March 22. The first to arrive were Nos. 153308/381, running as the 5D00/12.15 Derby Etches Park-Barrow Hill. They were followed by two convoys from Nottingham Eastcroft, the first comprising Nos. 153319/357/374/382-384 and the second Nos. 153302/311/318/372/379/385. Three units remained with the firm, namely Nos. 153355 (still in service the following…

1 Min
more mk.3 stock heads to the scrapyard

THE disposal of redundant Mk.3 stock to Sims Metals at Newport Docks is continuing and, by late March, more than 40 vehicles had arrived at the scrap metal processing site for scrapping. Following on from the move of six coaches on February 20, another six former Great Anglia vehicles were dispatched for scrap on March 12. No. 37401 Mary Queen of Scots was used for the move, the 5Z37/08.42 Norwich Crown Point-Sims, Newport. Included in the consist was TSO(B) No. 10402, the first Mk.3a micro-buffet to be disposed of. With Greater Anglia’s dispensation for operating Mk.3 slam-door stock expiring on April 1, further disposals are expected in the coming weeks. Of the three rakes disposed of from Long Marston in March, the first two were collected by No. 47813 Jack Frost. The…