Great Western Railway (Train Operating Company) - D

Great Western Railway (Train Operating Company) - D
Great Western Railway Current Fleet
Commuter, Regional and Branch Line
  • Sprinter   Class 150/2   DMU
Exmouth – Paignton
Exeter Central – Okehampton
Plymouth – Gunnislake
Liskeard – Looe
Par – Newquay
Truro – Falmouth Docks
St Erth – St Ives
  • Class 158 Express Sprinter
Exmouth – Paignton
Cardiff Central – Portsmouth Harbour
Cardiff Central – Penzance
Exeter Central - Barnstaple
Bristol Temple Meads – Weymouth
  • Networker   Class 165 Networker Turbo
Reading – Redhill or Gatwick Airport
Reading – Basingstoke
Reading or Didcot Parkway – Oxford or Banbury
Twyford – Henley-on-Thames
Maidenhead – Marlow
Slough – Windsor & Eton Central
West Ealing – Greenford
Bristol Temple Meads – Avonmouth or Severn Beach
Great Malvern – Bristol Temple Meads – Salisbury or Weymouth
Swindon – Gloucester or Weymouth
Cardiff Central – Portsmouth Harbour
Exmouth - Paignton
Newbury - Bedwyn
  • Class 166 Networker Turbo
Bristol Temple Meads – Avonmouth or Severn Beach
Bristol Parkway – Weston-super-Mare
Cardiff Central – Taunton
Swindon – Westbury
Great Malvern – Bristol Temple Meads – Southampton Central or Weymouth
Cardiff Central – Portsmouth Harbour
Barnstaple – St James Park (Weekends only)
Exmouth - Paignton
  • Electrostar   Class 387   EMU
London Paddington or Reading – Didcot Parkway, Newbury, Bristol Parkway or Swindon
London Paddington – Cardiff Central   2016–2017
  • Class 255 Castle   Class 43 HST   Diesel locomotive
Cardiff Central - Bristol Temple Meads – Taunton – Exeter St Davids – Plymouth – Penzance
  • Mark 3   Passenger coach
Great Western Railway Inter-City
  • Hitachi AT300   Class 800 IET   BMU
London Paddington
– Oxford, Bedwyn, Worcester Shrub Hill, Great Malvern, Hereford
– Cardiff Central, Swansea, Carmarthen
– Bristol Temple Meads, Weston-super-Mare
– Cheltenham Spa, Taunton, Paignton
  • Class 802 IET
London Paddington
– Exeter St Davids, Paignton, Plymouth, Penzance
– Oxford, Bedwyn, Worcester Shrub Hill, Great Malvern, Hereford
Great Western Railway Sleeper
  • Night Riviera   Class 57   Diesel locomotive
2 Night Riviera sets for London Paddington – Penzance sleeper service
1964–1967 (Rebuild: 1998–2004)
  • Mark 3   Passenger coach
Great Western Railway Shunting Locomotives
  • Class 08   Shunting locomotive
Stock movements in depots   1952–1962
^ Locomotive-hauled Mark 3 coaches are generally formed of 7–9 coaches for the Night Riviera. They are hauled by a single Class 57.
Great Western Railway Past Fleet
Commuter, Regional and Branch Line
  • Pacer  Class 142   DMU
Replaced by Class 165 Networker Turbo and Class 166 Networker Turbo
  • Pacer   Class 143
  • Sprinter   Class 150/0
Replaced by Class 165 Networker Turbo and Class 166 Networker Turbo
Transferred to Arriva Rail North and Northern Trains
  • Class 150/1
  • Class 153 Super Sprinter
Replaced by Class 165 Networker Turbo and Class 166 Networker Turbo
Transferred to Abellio ScotRail and KeolisAmey Wales
  • Electrostar   Class 387/1   EMU
2019–2020, 2023
12 units transferred to Heathrow Express between 2019–2020
3 units transferred to Great Northern in 2023
  • Class 387/2
These trains were subleased from Great Northern in 2021, to provide cover for Class 800 and Class 802 InterCity Express Trains (IETs) units, following cracks being found on the IETs
After the issues surrounding the IET trains were resolved, these units were returned to Great Northern at the end of 2021
  • Class 387/3
These trains were transferred from c2c to provide cover for Class 800 and Class 802 InterCity Express Trains (IETs) units, following cracks being found on the IETs
In June 2022 the units were withdrawn and transferred to Great Northern in July 2022
Great Western Railway Inter-City
  • InterCity 125   Class 43   Diesel locomotive
Replaced by Class 800 IET and Class 802 IET
Transfer of some power cars and coaches to Abellio ScotRail
  • Mark 3   Passenger coach 408
  • Alstom Coradia   Class 180 Adelante   DMU
Replaced by Class 800 IET and Class 802 IET
Transferred to Grand Central
  • Locomotive-hauled trains were in use on services between Cardiff, Bristol, Taunton and Paignton from December 2008 until November 2010 using Virgin Trains Class 57 locomotives with Mark 2 coaching stock. A second set hauled by EWS Class 67s was used between December 2009 and October 2010. These were withdrawn when sufficient DMUs were available following the transfer of six Class 150/1 sets from London Overground.
  • First Great Western issued a tender in May 2013 so that locomotive-hauled trains, or other train formations, could be operated on the Taunton-Cardiff route again, proposed to start in December 2013, to cover for DMUs out of service for refurbishment on Monday-to-Friday diagrams.
  • GWR also runs loco-hauled sets composed of seating coaches and a Class 57 locomotive from the Night Riviera service between Penzance and Exeter St Davids as part of the summer timetable to release a DMU for other services.
  • Twelve Class 142 Pacer DMUs were received by First Great Western in 2007, starting operations that December. These were sub-leased from Northern Rail (where they had been stored), in part to cover for refurbishment of FGW's Sprinter fleets but also to allow the Class 158s to be re-formed as three-coach sets.
  • They were based at Exeter TMD, working alongside the similar Class 143s on services in Devon and Cornwall, including the Avocet Line, Riviera Line and Tarka Line. Five 142s were returned to Northern Rail in late 2008, following the completion of the refresh of Class 150 Sprinter units.
  • The remaining seven units were returned to Northern Rail by November 2011 as they had been replaced by Class 150 units cascaded from London Overground and London Midland following the arrival of new Class 172 Turbostar units.
  • GWR's Night Riviera service also included the UK's last Motorail service, until that aspect was withdrawn at the end of the 2005 summer season due to low usage.
  • First Great Western previously leased 14 Class 180 Adelante units, operating on the Great Western Main Line, but following technical issues they were transferred elsewhere.
  • In 2012, five units were returned to First Great Western to operate weekday services on the Cotswold Line, allowing class 165 and 166 units to be reallocated to increase capacity on Thames Valley services.The Class 180s left GWR in stages between June and December 2017 to join Grand Central.
  • The 150/1s in the GWR fleet transferred to Arriva Rail North in stages, beginning with the first three in August 2017 when their leases expired, and ending in April 2018.
  • The 153s also transferred elsewhere in stages too, with the first four units going to East Midlands Trains and the next five units going to Arriva Rail North. This left just five 153 units with GWR, which eventually transferred to Transport for Wales in April 2019.
Great Western Railway Rejected Fleet
It was planned for Great Western Railway to operate nineteen Class 769/9 units once they were fully rolled out. The operator intended to run the first services in spring 2019, but this was delayed by issues faced by Porterbrook in converting the units. However, the first vehicle has been delivered and all were expected to be delivered by the end of 2021.
Although initially planned for use in London and the Thames Valley, while 12 Class 387 units were modified for Heathrow Express services, the future plan for these units was to be operating on services between Oxford, Reading and Gatwick Airport, which would have meant operating on non-electrified 25 kV AC OHLE and 750 V DC third-rail routes.
To enable this, GWR's allocation of Class 769 units would have retained their dual-voltage capability in addition to being fitted with diesel power units. The units would also receive an internal refurbishment and be fitted with air cooling.
The first Class 769 to be delivered to GWR was unit 769943, which arrived at Reading TMD in August 2020. It was expected to enter service in early 2021. The Class 769 was expected to enter service with GWR between June and December 2021, but this was later delayed to 2022.
In December 2022, GWR announced that the introduction of the Class 769 fleet would be abandoned and the units handed back to Porterbrook in April 2023.
Great Western Railway Future Fleet
  • In 2022, GWR's parent company FirstGroup issued an expressions of interest notice to manufacturers to supply a new fleet of bi-mode locomotives for its subsidiary TransPennine Express, with an option for additional locomotives to replace GWR's Class 57 sleeper service locomotives.
  • On 31 May 2022, GWR announced it was looking for 30 four-coach 110 mph capable 25 kV EMU trains for services between London Paddington and Swindon, capable of continuing to Cardiff.
  • In February 2023, GWR purchased a number of assets from the administrators of battery train manufacturer Vivarail, including 67 former London Underground D78 Stock carriages and intellectual property rights to the Class 230. 
GWR have also employed nine Vivarail staff. It intends to trial the Class 230 units on the Greenford branch line between West Ealing and Greenford.
Great Western Railway Livery
Great Western Trains adopted a livery of dark-green upper body and ivory lower body, with a stylised 'Merlin' bird logo. Following the rebranding as First Great Western, fader vinyls were added to the lower body, with a gold bar containing the stylised FirstGroup F logo and separate Great Western logotype. This livery was sometimes known as the 'fag packet' livery.
When the Class 180 Adelante units were delivered, they were painted in the intercity version of FirstGroup's corporate bus livery. This consisted of a purple-blue base, with pink and gold bars and large pink Fs on the carriage sides and white highlights along the roof and around the driver's cab. The doors were painted white to comply with the Disability Discrimination Act 1995.
The HST fleet was repainted to match as they went through overhaul, however, the livery on the power cars was progressively altered to a plain blue base with pink and gold stripes, following problems with dirt build-up on the large white areas.
The new Greater Western franchise involved repainting the HST fleet into FirstGroup's 'Dynamic Lines' livery for intercity and commuter services in the former First Great Western and First Great Western Link areas.
The livery was initially applied to the HST fleet as they went through refurbishment, although the Class 180 units did not receive the new livery due to the termination of their lease. The commuter units also received the new livery while receiving standard maintenance, as a refurbishment was not originally planned.
The rebranding of the company as Great Western Railway introduced a new GWR logo and a dark green livery with white stripes and grey doors in September 2015.
Great Western Railway Depots
Great Western Railway trains are based at eight depots. Other depots at Landore (Swansea) and Old Oak Common (London) closed in 2018.
  • London Paddington
Operated by Agility Trains
  • Reading   Reading
rebuilt to the North of its original location for the new flyover.
  • Stoke Gifford   Bristol Parkway
Operated by Agility Trains
  • St Phillip's Marsh   Bristol Temple Meads
  • Exeter TMD   Exeter St Davids
  • Laira  Plymouth
  • Long Rock   Penzance
  • Swansea Maliphant   Swansea
Operated by Agility Trains
Great Western Railway Past Depots
  • Old Oak Common   London Paddington
Closed 8 December 2018
  • Landore   Swansea
Closed for GWR in 2018
Great Western Railway TV Documentary
Channel 5 broadcast two television series looking into day-to-day challenges of the Great Western mainline, including events at Dawlish (as well as the sea wall destruction), Cheltenham race day and rugby at Cardiff.
It was broadcast as The Railway: First Great Western and the last series aired in 2015. A similar series based on London Paddington started in September 2017 and covered events such as the reaction to the Manchester Arena and London Bridge attacks, and several days of severe disruption.
Great Western Railway Future of the Franchise
The franchise was due to end on 31 March 2020. In November 2017, the DfT announced its intention to negotiate a further extension for the franchise until April 2022 with an option to extend for a further two years. A new contract was agreed on 30 March 2020, running for three years, extendable to four.
Great Western Railway Overview
Great Western Railway Franchise(s):
InterCity Great Western 4 February 1996 – 31 March 2006
Greater Western 1 April 2006 – 25 June 2028
Main Region(s): Greater London, South East England, South West England, Wales
Great Western Railway Other Region(s): East MidlandsWest Midlands
Great Western Railway Fleet Size:
12 Class 43 HST Castle sets
5 Class 57 diesel locomotives for 2 Night Riviera sleeper sets
19 Class 150 Sprinter units
18 Class 158 Express Sprinter units
36 Class 165 Networker Turbo units
21 Class 166 Networker Turbo units
30 Class 387 Electrostar units
57 Class 800 IET units
36 Class 802 IET units
Great Western Railway Stations Called At: over 270
Great Western Railway Stations Operated: 198
Great Western Railway Parent Company: FirstGroup
Reporting Mark: GW
Great Western Railway Predecessor:
First Great Western Link
Wessex Trains
Great Western Railway Technical Track Gauge: 1,435 mm (4 ft 8+1⁄2 in) standard gauge
Great Western Railway Electrification:
25 kV 50 Hz AC OHLE
Great Western Railway Length: 1,323.0 mi (2,129.2 km)
Rail Holidays
Rail Vacations
Luxury Trains
Luxury Tours
International Trains
International Tours
home Rail-Pass & Train Tickets & International Rail Holidays Hotel Booking & Hotel Reservations & Hotel Accomodation B&B Booking & B&B Reservations & B&B Accommodation Hostel Booking & Youth Hostel Reservations & Hostel Accommodation Chalet Rental & Holiday Homes & Vacation Homes Ski Pass Booking & Ski Pass Reservations & Ski Lift Pass Flight Tickets & Airline Reservations & Flight Booking Ferry Tickets & Ferry Booking & Ferry Reservations Car Rental Booking & Car Hire Reservations Excursions & Days Out & Day Trips & Theme Parks Rail Pass Booking & Rail Pass Reservations & Eurail & Interrail Rail Tickets & Rail Reservations & International Train Tickets Weekend Trips & Weekend Breaks & Weekend Away  Travel Insurance & Business Travel Insurance Eurotunnel Tickets & Eurotunnel Le Shuttle Reservations