Northern developing app to check when trains were last cleaned

Northern staff will be able to easily identify which trains need cleaning based on real time data from the new app being developed.

Image shows new Train Presentation Team app mock-up (2)

Credit: Northern

Northern is developing an app that will let its team of over 500 train presentation operatives know ‘to the minute’ when any given train on their network was last cleaned. It is part of a new plan led approach to the ‘basic cleans’ that take place in carriages while trains are waiting at stations during passenger service.

Train presentation staff will be able to easier-identify which trains are most in need of attention, based on real time data, rather than tackling them on a ‘first come, first serve’ basis.

“The technology we’re developing will give my team exactly ‘to the minute’ insight when a space was last cleaned,” Richard Holt, Head of Train Presentation at Northern, said. “It will enable them to ensure the right trains receive the right attention at the right time – which is essential when the time available to complete a ‘basic clean’ can be very limited. With over 2,500 services a day departing from stations across 3,000km of track, the cleaning task facing my team is massive.”

Image shows new Train Presentation Team app mock-up (2)

Credit: Northern

In 2022, Northern released a video to highlight the monumental task its 500 train presentation operatives have to keep its 345 trains clean and tidy.

Northern carries out train cleaning duties at 42 locations on its network, including five main TrainCare Centres at Allerton (Merseyside), Newton Heath (Grater Manchester), Heaton (Tyne & Wear), Neville Hill (West Yorkshire) and Hull Botanic Gardens (East-Riding).

Each year, the team carries out 695,000 ‘carriage cleans’ and work their way through 32,759 microfibre cloths, 10,300 sponges, 1,724 litres of toilet cleaner and 2,265 litres of floor and surface cleaners. They also replenish some 26 million pieces of toilet tissue and 778 litres of hand soap.


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