The new East West railway need not be electrified nor have any diesel trains. So says Chris Grayling who considers that, instead, it will have “a completely new generation of low-emissions trains.” The then transport minister, Jo Johnson, echoed this...
Andrew Haines became Network Rail’s new chief executive in August. In this month’s magazine, he gives his thoughts on where the railway needs to go, as expressed to the All-Party Parliamentary Rail Group. This follows his questioning by the...
Over 7,000 new rail passenger vehicles are to enter service between 2014 and 2021, representing more than half the UK fleet. These orders are due to a combination of factors including cheap finance, lower manufacturing costs, franchise quality requirements...
Thameslink’s ETCS level 2 signalling and automatic train operation is an impressive achievement. However, it is misleading for the Digital Railway’s website to state that “digital deployment on the Thameslink will allow 24 trains per hour to run”. Increasing...
The National Skills Academy for Rail forecasts technical skills shortages in the rail industry of around 10,000 people over the next five years. This is a particular issue for signalling, telecommunications and traction and rolling stock, where forty percent...
The May timetable changes have caused extreme disruption to passengers on Northern Rail and Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR), with some commuters reported to have lost jobs as a result. Many claim that Britain’s railways have never failed their passengers...
This month we focus on the benefits of electrification and how it can be delivered at an acceptable cost. For example, our ‘Why electrify?’ feature shows that, when diesel driven, current bi-mode trains have only two-thirds the traction power...
What’s not to like about a DMU gearbox that offers savings in fuel, CO2 and diesel emissions, as well as reduced maintenance costs, so that it can pay for itself in about four years? The answer seems to be...
Between 2016 and 2021, around £11 billion is being invested in seven thousand rail passenger vehicles, more than half the current UK fleet. Less than a thousand vehicles entered service in the previous six years. These new train orders are...
Since the early days of privatisation, the digital railway has been a holy grail, offering significant capacity increases and slashed signalling costs. Railtrack deluded itself into thinking that untried moving-block signalling could be part of its West Coast upgrade....

Crossrail opening goes back to 2021

The estimated completion date of Crossrail, the new railway running under London from West to East, has now been put back to...