Rail Express November 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

United Kingdom
Mortons Media Group, Ltd
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12 Ausgaben

in dieser ausgabe

2 Min
future shock

It’s been an unexpectedly turbulent time for railways recently. On the downside, the DfT’s decision to take over Southeastern services a couple of days after this issue of Rail Express hits the shelves (see Headline News, page 10) took most by surprise. Not least, because the same joint venture behind Southeastern, Govia, was as recently as June awarded a contract extension by the DfT for the GTR group of services. As is sadly so often the case, the railway seems to have become a political football, with politicians congratulating themselves on the swiftness of the decision to strip the operator of its franchise. Wrong on two counts, of course. The fact is that an existing contract wasn’t renewed. That’s very different from taking back a contract and simply follows in the…

3 Min
london gateway expansion good news for rail freight

DP World, operator of London Gateway, is to commission a fourth berth at its rail-served logistics hub. The £300 million scheme will provide more capacity for the world’s largest vessels, and follows previous investment of £2 billion. The new quay will increase capacity by a third, in anticipation of the rising use of ships capable of conveying up to 24,000 TEU (20ft equivalent containers) between Asia and Europe by 2023. It also reflects the economic benefits that are expected to result from the creation of the Thames Freeport which allows the tariff free handling of imports that are re-exported. PORT THROUGHPUT UP Throughput at the port has been growing, with 888,000 TEU being handled in the first six months of 2021, which is an increase of 23% compared to the same period last…

1 Min
southeastern heads for public ownership after financial misreporting

The Department of Transport revealed on September 28 that the Government’s Operator of Last Resort (to be known as SE Trains) will take over the running of Southeastern services from Govia on October 17, when the TOC’s current direct award contract expires. While an extension until March 2022 was originally a possibility and new operating contracts have been agreed with other operators, the DfT claimed that financial irregularities that led to the non-declaration of £25 million of taxpayer funding had caused a serious breach of the franchise agreement’s ‘good faith’ obligations. Although the money has since been reclaimed by the public sector, the DfT has chosen to take on operation of Southeastern in the same way that it currently runs Northern and LNER. Passengers and frontline staff have been told they will…

3 Min
transport for wales implements mk.4 cascade

On September 13, the three Cardiff–Holyhead direct services started running with Mk.4 rolling stock cascaded from LNER East Coast operations. The sets provide First and Standard Class accommodation, including kitchen/buffet car facilities, and are made up of four coaches, plus a Driving Van Trailer, with Class 67 locomotive haulage hired in from DB Cargo. Typical journey time is 4hrs 30mins, which means there will be few through passengers, but intermediate journeys will be competitive and the service is a statement of intent about future ambitions to improve the infrastructure that will allow higher line speeds, which in turn will result in shorter journey times. This includes the North Wales coastal route that has been starved of investment, other than some signalling renewals which did not impact on line speed. The Union Connectivity…

1 Min
pendolino refurb in full swing

The first of Avanti West Coast’s Pendolino trains has been fully stripped back, two months into a major refurbishment programme at Alstom’s Widnes depot. Images from AWC show No. 390125 with bare interiors, although the 11-car unit is still expected to reenter service in late 2021. The remaining 55 members of the fleet are due to receive a similar treatment by early 2024. The £117 million project includes replacement of Standard Class seats, conversion of former First Class carriage G to Standard, creation of a new cafe bar, improved lighting and new interior carpets, passenger information screens, additional luggage space, power points at every seat and refurbished toilets.…

3 Min
in brief

CLASS 365s GO FOR SCRAP HOPES of a new use for former Great Northern Class 365s (see Units, October issue) are dwindling, with the first two members of the 40-strong fleet, Nos. 365501 and 365511, moved by rail to CF Booth’s scrapyard at Rotherham on September 30, by ROG’s No. 57310. WEST MIDS BIDS FOR TRANSPORT FUNDING WEST Midlands Combined Authority approved plans on September 17 to bid for £2 billion of Government funding to improve transport across the region. Rail projects which could benefit include improvements to West Midlands Metro, new heavy rail stations, plus improved interchanges at Solihull and Sutton Coldfield, an additional platform at Birmingham Snow Hill and an innovative Very Light Rail network for Coventry city centre. TPE DIGITAL UPGRADE A COLLABORATIVE partnership between Siemens Mobility, TransPennine Express and Eversholt Rail…