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TPE’s Goodwin pledges new trains and more services

TransPennine Express is planning a three-phase improvement to its services, with the first - a sixth hourly Manchester-Leeds service - starting in December 2017.

Each phase starts in successive years, so December 2018 will feature the introduction of direct Liverpool-Glasgow services along the West Coast Main Line, and December 2019 will feature an hourly Liverpool-Newcastle extended to Edinburgh, calling at Morpeth. The franchise runs until March 2023, with the Department for Transport holding an option to grant a two-year extension.

Each phase comes with new trains, but TPE Managing Director Leo Goodwin remained tight-lipped when quizzed by RAIL about who would build these trains, what they would be and where they would be maintained. Pressed repeatedly, all he would say was that TPE was in the middle of a live procurement exercise.

Nor would Goodwin say whether the trains would be diesel, electric or bi-mode, although he did say there would be 220 new coaches of 125mph stock to inter-city standards in five-car formations.

TPE plans to keep 29 of its current fleet of 51 Class 185 DMUs, with Customer Services Director Kathryn O’Brien saying they would mainly run on the South TransPennine route through Sheffield - in pairs to give six-car trains.

  • For much more on this, read RAIL 794, published on February 17.

 

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  • FrankH - 16/02/2016 09:39

    The Liverpool - Glasgow service, I wonder if it will couple to the Man Airport - Glasgow/Edinburgh service at Preston as used to happen in the 60's. There's only 1 freight (to/from Scotland) path per hour north of Preston 06.00-22.00 so I can't see another alternative unless higher speed container flats are in the pipeline or DRS puts 88's onto freight or both.

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  • Graham Barber - 16/02/2016 13:49

    It is clear from the above that First HAS NOT ordered ANY trains for the NEW Trans pennine franchise and is unable to do so ! As the new franchise starts on the 1st of April at what point do the DFT take action and strip First of the Franchise due to not being abel to deliver what it has planned !!!!! DOR trains anyone to operate trans pennine ?????

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    • BigTone - 17/02/2016 15:03

      Unable to do so? The last I read, they are in negotiations which will be kept confidential until the agreement is signed (Standard practice)

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  • BigTone - 16/02/2016 20:52

    There is one other alternative, divert the freights back onto the Settle - Carlisle (Those that were sent from the S&C to the WCML and a few more) As far as the new rolling stock goes, I cannot see the point in buying straight diesels. Straight electric and dual mode, yes. The dual mode units will need decent diesel power to get over the Pennines as I can see it taking a fair while to get the wires up

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  • Andrewjgwilt1989 - 17/02/2016 09:58

    Plus the Trans-Pennine route between Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds, York, Sheffield and Hull is soon to be electrified with the current DMU trains to be replaced by EMU trains. Also the Midland Mainline is soon to be electrified from Bedford to Leicester, Nottingham, Derby and Sheffield as new trains are in plans for East Midlands Trains to replace the Class 43 MK3 HST's and Class 222 Meridians DEMU's.

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    • BigTone - 18/02/2016 12:03

      The Calder Valley route should be ready by 2018 to temporarily take the Trans Pennine traffic while the Trans Pennine route is expected to be electrified by 2022

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  • Rob Wedekind - 17/02/2016 20:19

    Would be interesting to see the amount FTPE has bidded year on year and whether we will be left with a GNER / NXEC situation where they can't afford the payments in year X, and start complaining to the DfT blaming them. Should bar them from holding franchises if they do.

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    • BigTone - 18/02/2016 19:11

      It was only NXEC that couldn't make the premium payments. GNER's parent company (Sea Containers) went under taking GNER with it. Nothing to do with GNER itself

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  • FrankH - 22/02/2016 16:57

    I wonder where the 125 mph inter city stock is going. No point on the WCML as the 100 mph class 350's are only 4 minutes slower Preston - Glasgow than Pendolinos with the same number of stops. Uprate them to 110 mph as London Midand have done, no need for 125mph stock is there.

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    • BigTone - 23/02/2016 16:47

      They're going on the West Coast Mainline and the Trans Pennine North route. The 350's are rated for 110 mph but there are only 10 of them and at peak times suffer overcrowding. I think these 350s were the only ones rated at 110 mph from new. You're right that the LM 350s were uprated later

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      • FrankH - 25/02/2016 23:00

        The TP 350's seem to have plenty of legroom, well spaced seats. Hope the new units arn't anything like Virgins pendolinos with cramped seating, I can't get comfy at all.

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