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Plans for new rolling stock to replace BR DMUs

An East Midlands Trains Class 153, 156 and 158 at Eastcroft on February 11. PAUL BIGLAND/RAIL.

Diesel multiple units built in the 1980s by British Rail could be replaced in the next decade, as the Department for Transport believes there are “likely to be significant opportunities” to replace them with modern diesels.

Outlined in the Rolling Stock Perspective: Moving Britain Ahead report published on May 18, this would mean that as well as the Pacers, potentially all Class 150s, ‘153s’, ‘155s’, ‘156s’, ‘158s’ and ‘159s’ could be withdrawn. That would be 1,033 vehicles if all were replaced like-for-like.

However, the report does state: “Good high quality refurbishment can deliver a passenger experience comparable with new rolling stock.”

  • For more on this, read RAIL 802, published on June 8.

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  • Tim Hall - 24/05/2016 21:18

    When you think about it, the 15X has now reached the age the first generation DMUs had reached when the Sprinters were built to replace them. I remember how ropey the "Heritage" DMUs had got by the end; the Sprinters have aged rather better, and I'd have thought they've got another decade of life left in them. Not so the Pacers, of course.

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  • Andrewjgwilt1989 - 24/05/2016 21:51

    The Class 150's would be cascaded to either Great Western Railway or London Midland, Class 158's cascaded to Abellio Scotrail or Arriva Trains Wales, Class 159's cascaded to Great Western Railway or South West Trains, Class 153's cascaded to East Midlands Trains or Great Western Railway and Class 156's cascaded to either Arriva Trains Wales or Abellio Greater Anglia.

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    • David - 24/05/2016 23:45

      What on earth are you on about? Firstly, the article talks about replacing the Sprinter units and secondly, your cascade "plans" are all wrong. GWR and ScotRail are replacing their diesels, London Midland don't need any more and SWT already have all the 159s.

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      • Andrewjgwilt1989 - 26/05/2016 19:00

        David. Leave off will you. I'm sick of you giving me hard times and such crap excuses. Ok I got it all wrong but still I don't need you taking the advantage on what I commented. So just shut up.

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        • Barry - 26/05/2016 23:07

          He's not the one making excuses. Nobody's taking advantage.

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          • Andrewjgwilt1989 - 26/05/2016 23:16

            Fine. Then it's settled. I shut up. We can move on. Simples.

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    • BigTone - 26/05/2016 17:45

      The GWR will be getting rid of their 150s when the Thames Valley lines are wired. The Turbostars are to be sent down to the South West. Besides getting rid of the Pacers, Northern are standing down the 153s. In view of the acessability regs that are coming in, I can see the 153s being recombined into 155s as there will not be many seats left in a 153 after conversion. EMT's franchise ends in 2018 so probably they might have a clear-out

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  • FrankH - 24/05/2016 23:36

    The 150's will be next on the unwanted list as they have no corridor connections between units.

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    • David - 24/05/2016 23:43

      Not quite. The majority of Class 150s are of the 150/2 subclass, which have cab-end corridor connections.

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      • FrankH - 25/05/2016 00:37

        Never noticed even though I see dozens of DMU's every day. That'll teach me to be more observant.

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    • mike - 25/05/2016 10:06

      Northern to get all or most of 150's from gwr and reform them into 3 car sets

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    • J Marsden - 25/05/2016 13:39

      That being the case then all the new Arriva Northern trains (diesel and electric) will be on the list as they also will have no corridor connections between units

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      • BigTone - 26/05/2016 17:49

        But they are capable of 100 mph as opposed to 75 mph of the Pacers and 15x series (158 can do 90 mph)

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        • FrankH - 27/05/2016 09:15

          Speed isn't the issue with most TOC's. It's when 2 x 2 car sets are coupled the guard/conductor for revenue collection (this being the main reason) cannot access both sets between stations. They'll keep the 150/2's and 156's but want shut of the 150/1's. There was an article on it a few mags ago. It was either the south west or welsh valley's they were on about (could have been both). We in the north are stuck with them. The pacers will go and the 150/1's will be used on services which can mostly manage with 2 cars.

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          • BigTone - 27/05/2016 11:36

            Something that has been done before is take two150/1s and one 150/2. Split the 150/2 and slot each coach in the 150/1 to make two 150/0s. The prototype 150 s were three coach trains

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            • FrankH - 27/05/2016 13:26

              They're still around Birmingham I think.

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            • FrankH - 27/05/2016 13:28

              An afterthought, they may well do that again when the new dmu's/emu's arrive.

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  • Gizzy - 27/05/2016 07:34

    Why do the Mods allow these rude comments?

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    • Barry - 27/05/2016 14:04

      Which ones?

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  • Gizzy - 31/05/2016 19:20

    Mr Gwilt's....

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