The UK Department for Transport (DfT) and Agility Trains (comprising Hitachi Rail Europe and John Laing Investments) signed the contract for the DfT’s Intercity Express Programme (IEP) and confirmed simultaneous financial close for Phase 1 of the project.
The IEP, worth some £4.5bn, comprises trains, maintenance depots, and route upgrades, with Network Rail undertaking the infrastructure upgrades to allow the new trains to operate on the network.
Agility Trains is the contract partner for the DfT for the delivery of trains, maintenance and daily service delivery, with Hitachi Rail Europe as sub-contractor in charge of supplying the trains and ensuring that they reliably perform day in and day out. The contract guarantees 27.5 years of usage of the trains, ensuring long-term reliability for UK passengers.
As part of the contract, Agility Trains’ sub-contractor Hitachi Rail Europe will provide 596 carriages of electric and bi-mode trains for the Great Western Main Line (Phase 1) and the East Coast Main Line (Phase 2). The fleet of 92 trains will be maintained in a number of new-built and upgraded maintenance facilities, including new depots in Swansea, Bristol, west London and Doncaster.
Alistair Dormer, Chief Executive Officer of Agility Trains said: “We are absolutely delighted to have achieved contract award on the Intercity Express Programme. It is among the biggest contracts
ever closed in the UK rail industry and will mean a step change in reliability, capacity and comfort to British passengers. The new fleet of trains will be substantially built in the UK by our supplier Hitachi Rail Europe in their new manufacturing plant in the north east of England, bringing additional socio-economic benefits to Great Britain.”