A bi-mode Class 800/1 reached Inverness for the first time on December 15, carrying out a test from Doncaster. This is the first time an Intercity Express Programme (IEP) train has run north of Edinburgh - it ran under diesel power, with overhead line electrification ending west of the Scottish capital.
GB Railfreight operated the test train using nine-car 800101, which left Yorkshire at 0844 and arrived at Inverness at 1731, eight minutes late. It departed at 1915 (two minutes late) and arrived at Doncaster at 0233 (37 minutes early).
No exact date has been given, but Virgin Trains East Coast said that the first IEPs will serve five of Scotland’s seven cities from 2019. The first VTEC Class 800/801s enter traffic in December (RAIL 837).
- The full story will be in RAIL 843, published on January 3, and available on Android/iPad on December 30.