Rail Transport in Great Britain - High-Speed Rolling Stock - F

Rail Transport in Great Britain - F
High-Speed Rolling Stock
As of August 2023 the following rolling stock on the UK network is capable of 125 mph or more:
  • Siemens Velaro   374   Eurostar e320   EMU
  • TGV TMST   373   Eurostar e300   EMU
  • Hitachi A-train AT300   395   Southeastern Javelin   EMU
  • Hitachi A-train AT300   800   GWR IET, LNER Azuma BMU Not known Hitachi A-train AT300   140 (225) 125 (200)
  • Hitachi A-train AT300   801   LNER Azuma EMU 140 (225) Hitachi A-train AT300   125 (200)
  • Hitachi A-train AT300   802 GWR IET, TransPennine Express Nova 1, Hull Trains Paragon BMU 140 (225) 125 (200)
  • Hitachi A-train AT300   803   Lumo (unnamed)   EMU
  • Hitachi A-train AT300   805   Avanti West Coast (TBC)   BMU
  • Hitachi A-train AT300   807   Avanti West Coast (TBC)   EMU
  • Hitachi A-train AT300   810   EMR InterCity Aurora   BMU
  • InterCity 225   91 + Mark 4 coaches   LNER InterCity 225   Electric Loco
  • Alstom Pendolino   390   Avanti West Coast Pendolino   EMU
  • CAF Civity   397   TransPennine Express Nova 2   EMU
  • InterCity 125   43 (HST) + Mark 3 coaches   ScotRail Inter7City   Diesel Loco
  • Class 67   Diesel Loco
  • Alstom Coradia   180   Grand Central Adelante   DHMU
  • Bombardier Voyager   220   CrossCountry Voyager   DEMU
  • Bombardier Voyager   221   Avanti West Coast Super Voyager
  • CrossCountry Voyager   DEMU
  • Bombardier Voyager   222   EMR InterCity Meridian   DEMU
In 2011 the fastest timetabled start-to-stop run by a UK domestic train service was the Hull Trains 07.30 King's Cross to Hull, which covered the 125.4 km (78 miles) from Stevenage to Grantham in 42 minutes at an average speed of 179.1 km/h (111.4 mph). This was operated by a Class 180 diesel unit running "under the wires" at the time, and is now operated by Class 802 Paragon bi-mode units, operating on electric power on this section. This was matched by several Leeds to London Class 91-operated East Coast trains if their two-minute recovery allowance for this section is excluded from the public timetable.
Local Metro and Other Rail Systems
A number of towns and cities have rapid transit networks. Underground technology is used in the Glasgow subway, Merseyrail centred on Liverpool, London Underground centred on London, London Overground and the London Docklands Light Railway centred on London, and the Tyne and Wear Metro centred on Newcastle upon Tyne.
Light rail systems in the form of trams are in Birmingham, Croydon, Manchester, Nottingham, Sheffield and Edinburgh. These systems use a combination of street running tramways and, where available, reserved right of way or former conventional rail lines in some suburbs. Blackpool has the one remaining traditional tram system. Monorails, heritage tramways, miniature railways and funiculars also exist in several places.
In addition, there are a number of heritage (mainly steam) standard and narrow gauge railways, and a few industrial railways and tramways. Some lines which appear to be heritage operations sometimes claim to be part of the public transport network, the Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway in Kent regularly transports schoolchildren.
Most major cities have some form of commuter rail network. These include Belfast, Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, London and Manchester.
Goods Services
There are four main goods operating companies in the UK, the largest of which is DB Cargo UK (formerly DB Schenker, formerly English Welsh & Scottish (EWS)). There are also several smaller independent operators including Mendip Rail. Types of freight carried include intermodal – in essence containerised freight – and coal, metals, oil, and construction materials. The Beeching Cuts, in contrast to passenger services, greatly modernised the goods sector, replacing inefficient wagons with containerised regional hubs.
Freight services had been in steady decline since the 1930s, initially because of the reduction in manufacturing and then road haulage's cost advantage in combination with higher wages. Since 1995, however, the amount of freight carried on the railways has increased sharply due to increased reliability and competition, as well as international services. In 2000, the Department for Transport's Transport Ten Year Plan called for an 80% increase in rail freight.
Statistics on freight are specified in terms of the weight of freight lifted, and the net tonne kilometre, being freight weight multiplied by distance carried. 116.6 million tonnes of freight was lifted in the 2013–4 period, against 138 million tonnes in 1986–7, a decrease of 16%. However, a record 22.7 billion net tonne kilometres (14 billion net ton miles) of freight movement were recorded in 2013–4, against 16.6 billion (10.1 billion) in 1986–7, an increase of 38%.
Coal made up 36% of the total net tonne kilometre, though its share was declining. Rail freight had increased its market share since privatisation (by net tonne kilometres) from 7.4% in 1998 to 11.1% in 2013. Growth was partly due to more international services including the Channel Tunnel and Port of Felixstowe, which is containerised. Nevertheless, as of 2008, network bottlenecks and insufficient investment in catering for 9' 6" high shipping containers restricted growth.
A symbolic loss to the rail freight industry in Great Britain was the custom of the Royal Mail, which from 2004 discontinued use of its 49-train fleet, and switched to road haulage after a near 170-year-preference for trains. Mail trains had long been part of the tradition of the railways in Great Britain, famously celebrated in the film Night Mail, for which W. H. Auden wrote the poem of the same name. Although Royal Mail suspended mail trains in January 2004, this decision was reversed in December of the same year, and Class 325s are now used on some routes including between London, Warrington and Scotland.
Rail Transport in Great Britain Overview
Infrastructure Company: Network Rail (until 2024)
Major Operators:
National Rail franchisees
Independent operators
State-owned operators
Ridership: 1.738 billion (2019/20)
Passenger km: 66.8 km (41.5 mi) billion (2019/20)
System Length Total: 15,811 km (9,824 mi)
Electrified: 5,374 km (3,339 mi)
No. Stations: 2,576
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