Greater Anglia Class 720s in passenger service

Bombardier Greater Anglia Class 720/5 electric multiple units finally entered passenger service on November 26, when five-car 720515/517 formed the 1610 Southend Victoria-London Liverpool Street and 1725 return.

GA has 133 five-car EMUs on order from Bombardier, in an £890 million deal financed by Angel Trains.

The Class 720s should have begun carrying passengers in March 2019, but software problems delayed their introduction. This has forced GA to retain EMUs that do not meet accessibility regulations for up to 18 months longer than planned.

“We’re confident these new trains will improve our customers’ journeys, as they are longer with more seats and all the mod-cons modern passengers expect,” said GA Franchise and Programmes Director Ian McConnell.

Bombardier President UK & Ireland Matt Byrne said: “It’s really great news that Greater Anglia’s passengers can now start travelling on these cutting-edge, British-designed and built trains.”

  • For the FULL story, read RAIL 920, published on December 16, and available digitally from December 12.

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  • Anonymous - 01/01/2021 01:32

    The Bombardier Aventra Class 720s will operate the West Anglia Main Line, Great Eastern Main Line and the branch lines throughout 2020 and 2021 onwards. That Greater Anglia placed a order of 133 Class 720. And to replace the older electric units (Class 317 and Class 321) units that are 30+ years old and are facing getting scrapped but some to be preserved and some to be converted into Battery/Hydrogen MU (such as the Class 600 “Breeze”). And with the 21 Class 360/1 Desiro units to be cascaded to East Midlands Railway that will work on the London St. Pancras-Corby and Kettering services from early 2021. And the Class 379 Electrostar units which are most likely to be moved for storage and in future to be upgraded as BEMU Electrostar “Batterystar”. Or cascaded elsewhere (ie-Great Western Railway/Heathrow Express or GTR Great Northern).

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