Rail Express May 2021

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

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United Kingdom
Mortons Media Group, Ltd
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12 Ausgaben

in dieser ausgabe

2 Min
25 years of change

DEPENDING on your point of view – or historical preference – Rail Express was born either in the dying days of British Rail or the brave new world of the Privatisation era. Either way, no one can deny the past 25 years have been an exciting time for our railways, and that is something we have tracked closely through our 300 issues so far. Both points of view can claim victories over each other, as who would have thought back then that 2021 would still have so many ex-BR locos running on the main line – with examples from Classes 20, 31, 33, 37, 40, 47, 50, 52, 55, 56, 59, 60, 73, 86, 87, 90, 91 and 92 currently active – a testament to their original design. Yet even the…

4 Min
scotrail to be nationalised

ABELLIO’S contract to operate the ScotRail franchise will not be extended or retendered and thus will end on March 31, 2022. At present, services are being provided under the terms of an Emergency Measures Agreement (EMA), which has been extended to September 2021. These arrangements allow Abellio to be reimbursed for the cost of operating the train service specified by Transport Scotland plus a small profit margin included to meet corporate overhead expenses. If actions follow the precedent set by Welsh Ministers for rail services in Wales, ScotRail will become a company owned by Transport Scotland under the procedures that allow an operator of last resort (OLR) to be appointed with responsibility to run the timetable. The Caledonian Sleeper franchise is not included in the Scottish Government takeover, and so for the moment…

2 Min
first ‘91’ heads for scrap

ACCEPTED into traffic in September 1990, No. 91132 has become the first of the class to be sent for disposal, the Class 91/1 being noted on the back of a low-loader on March 18, moving to Sims Metals, Beeston, after a visit to Wabtec Doncaster. Although numerically the final member of the 31-strong class, the ‘Electra’ was actually built as No. 91023 – the only example renumbered out of sequence during refurbishment after being involved in two fatal rail accidents at Hatfield in October 2000 and Great Heck in February 2001. No. 91132 is expected to be the first of four Class 91s to be scrapped over the coming months, the other three likely to be Nos. 91103, 91104 and 91108. On a more positive note, ‘Flying Scotsman’-branded No. 91110 has been reinstated…

2 Min
in brief

NO RETURN FOR ‘442s’ SOUTH Western Railway caused a stir at the end of March when it announced the refurbished Class 442 EMUs would not now be used on services to Portsmouth. The ‘442s’ date back to 1988 and Weymouth Line electrification but, after their use with other operators, SWR announced plans in 2017 to bring back and upgrade 18 units for the Portsmouth Line. Much of this work has been completed, but now the future of the fleet looks bleak as Class 458s will be used instead. Porterbrook has chosen that Alstom has won the £25 million contract to upgrade the ‘458s’ and regear them for 100mph running. KIRKBY CRASH A RAIL Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) investigation is taking place after the 2K48/18.35 Liverpool Central-Kirkby, formed of Nos. 507006/21, ran into the…

2 Min
cardiff seeks rail expansion

A CALL for more frequent rail services has been published by the 10 local authorities in South East Wales as part of the City Deal programme supported by the UK and Welsh Governments. The passenger rail vision (PRV) is part of a future integrated ‘turn up and go’ public transport network that will complement the South Wales Metro project, which is electrifying the Core Valley Lines serving Cardiff and extending the heavy rail routes using tram-trains. The Welsh Government aims to reach net carbon emissions by 2050, and improved public transport is seen as a key way to reduce the number of car journeys in the Cardiff area. With a likely cost of £4 billion, funding is being sought from the UK Government as part of the levelling up agenda to improve…

2 Min
first additional northern ireland dmu cars delivered

THE first of 21 new CAF-built 4000 Class DMU intermediate cars were delivered to Belfast York Road from Spain on March 19, write William Watson and Alan McFerran. The three cars had been transported by sea from Santander to Dublin Port, and then by road to Belfast. Northern Ireland Railways has confirmed that Nos. 4014-4020 are the seven units that will each be strengthened with three new cars each to make them permanent six-car formations. The new cars have been designated type M4, M5 and M6 and the running number of each vehicle type will be 46xx, 47xx & 48xx respectively, with the last two digits being the unit number. Each six-car unit will be formed: Nos. 43xx+45xx+46xx+47xx+48xx+44xx. The M4 and M5 vehicles have 72 seats and eight tip-up seats, while the M6…