All aboard – the new Thameslink train (shown here at Blackfriars) has space for all its passengers on the suburban route
Thameslink’s new generation of train is now running on the Wimbledon and Sutton ‘loop’ and on stopping services to and from St Albans and Luton, via stations such as Radlett and Elstree & Borehamwood, offering passengers greater space and a modern travelling environment.
Delivered as part of the Government-sponsored Thameslink Programme, the eight-carriage Siemens-built Class 700 replaces trains 29 years old and features climate control, the latest passenger information system and meets the latest requirements for people with disabilities with a fully accessible toilet and wheelchair spaces.
The new train is ideal for the busy suburban route where, at certain stations such as Loughborough Junction, services have been so busy passengers have not always been able to board the first train of their choice. The new trains resolve this because they are much more spacious with wider doors, wide aisles and easy-to-reach grab handles.
Engineering Director Gerry McFadden said: “I’m delighted that the first Thameslink train is now operating on the suburban route between Wimbledon, Sutton and St Albans and Luton. More will soon follow and we hope passengers enjoy the step change in travelling environment they provide.”
Dave Hooper, Siemens’ Thameslink Programme Director, said: “This is another milestone in our delivery of the Class 700 trains. These new trains are designed with the passenger in mind and we look forward to working closely with Thameslink to introduce more onto the route.”
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The new Thameslink Class 700 has replaced Class 319 trains and began operating 11 services a day on the Wimbledon and Sutton ‘loop’ on 31 October, many of which go to and from Luton and St Albans; one of these is in the morning peak but more will follow. The Class 700 has been operating on the longer-distance Bedford-Brighton service in 12-carriage formation since June.
Govia Thameslink Railway
Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) operates Thameslink, Great Northern, Southern and Gatwick Express services as follows:
The GTR investment programme for stations includes funding for more CCTV, toilet refurbishments, new retail facilities, help points and car park improvements – as well as plans for increased motorcycle storage and improved transport integration.
southernrailway.com, gatwickexpress.com, thameslinkrailway.com greatnorthernrail.co