National Express passengers benefit, early arrival of 30 New Class 379 Trains

National Express passengers benefit, early arrival of 30 New Class 379 Trains

The announcement is excellent news for passengers on NXEA’s West Anglia routes, with many services operated by the new trains and a number of other enhancements on course to be delivered later in the year.

The fleet of 120 additional carriages is set to enable the provision of 11,000 more seats a day for commuters from December 2011, when major timetable improvements facilitated by the launch of the new trains will enable more capacity to be introduced all along the West Anglia route, for destinations including Cambridge, Bishops Stortford, Harlow, Hertford East, Cheshunt and Enfield (as trains freed up by the arrival of the new trains are used to launch a new timetable and longer trains). Other service improvements will include more direct trains to Stratford and some faster services to and from Cambridge. 

The 30 four-carriage Class 379s are being used on Stansted Express services between London and Stansted Airport and some London to Cambridge services. The new trains are among the first vehicles to be delivered from the additional 2,100 extra carriages the Government is introducing to the UK’s rail network by 2019. They have a top speed of 100mph and each four-carriage train has 20 first class and 189 standard class seats. Features include an integral internal CCTV system for passenger safety, 2x2 seating and larger luggage racks, a wi-fi network and state-of-the-art train management system and regenerative braking. Manufactured in Derby by Bombardier Transportation and owned by Lloyds Bank Corporate Markets, the trains feature high standards of accommodation in a modern air-conditioned environment. The trains are also fully accessible to those with disabilities.  A recent review of the new train in the respected RAIL magazine described the trains as “nippy, with superb acceleration…..this is a train that is quiet, and which has some nice passenger-friendly touches….It offers an excellent ride quality…The Class 379 will prove an invaluable addition to the NXEA fleet.”

Effective project management between NXEA, Bombardier Transportation and Network Rail has seen a very smooth programme of introduction for the trains, ahead of the timescales agreed with the Department for Transport, so many passengers are already enjoying better journeys and the travel experience for the millions of airline passengers who use Stansted as a gateway to London and the wider UK has been transformed. 

Andrew Chivers, Managing Director, National Express East Anglia said: “I am delighted these new trains have now all been introduced on our Stansted Express and Cambridge to Liverpool Street services. They will enable the provision of thousands of extra seats and improved travel comfort for our customers. This has been achieved through a positive partnership-led approach with the Department for Transport, which has not only delivered the new trains but also further infrastructure enhancements across our East Anglia network, such as additional car parks and new carriage washers.”

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The enhancements delivered by the partnership represent an investment in the railway in the East of England of £185m.

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