Northern introduces nine additional trains from new fleet into operation
Of the original order, 75 per cent of the 101 trains are now in service, with the remainder expected to be put into operation by the end of May 2020.
Credit: Northern - Managing Director of Arriva Rail UK, Chris Burchell, with one of Northern's new trains.
Following the introduction of nine new trainsets, Northern has now introduced 75 per cent of its new fleet into passenger operation. Of the total 101 trains that were originally ordered, 75 are now in active service across the Northern network, serving over 140 stations within the region.
The new trains represent a £500 million investment into improving rail in the north of England, which began with the introduction of the first trainsets in summer 2019. Since then, over five million passenger journeys have been made on the Class 195 and Class 331 trains.
Managing Director of Arriva Rail UK, Chris Burchell, said: “I am delighted that our ambitious new trains project is 75 per cent complete, and we are on schedule to have all 101 trains in service by May this year. The new trains are truly transformational, and it’s great that more than five million journeys have already been made on Northern in more comfort and with more state-of-the-art technology than ever before.”
Burchell continued: “I want to acknowledge the team and colleagues at Northern who have worked expertly and professionally – in sometimes challenging circumstances – to get us to this point. It is not easy to introduce brand new trains and there is a tremendous amount of unseen work and preparation in the background. Colleagues have done a magnificent job and I want to thank them on behalf of Arriva for their hard work and continued commitment to delivering the improvements our customers deserve.”
Features of the new trains include: free Wi-Fi, air-conditioning, at-seat power and customer information/media screens with real-time information, as well as being more spacious and fully accessible, with spaces for wheelchairs and bicycles.
Richard Allan, Northern’s Deputy Managing Director, said: “The Northern network is busier than it has been for a generation – more than 108 million journeys were made on Northern services in 2019 and we are committed to delivering a 21st century railway for those customers. The introduction of new trains is at the heart of this transformation. These fantastic trains are a true step-change in travelling experience and we are extremely proud to have introduced 75 brand new trains, with all 101 scheduled to be carrying passengers by the end of May.”