Today marks one year since Greater Anglia introduced the first of its brand new Stadler bi-mode trains into passenger service.
The new trains, which are operating on regional routes in Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and parts of Essex, are fulfilling their promise of transforming rail travel with more seats, a vastly improved travelling experience and better performance.
Offering more comfortable seats, USB and plug points, Wi-Fi and air conditioning, the high quality, three and four carriage, air-conditioned trains provide a huge improvement on the trains they replaced.
They also boast gold standard accessibility features – including a lower floor and a retractable step at every door to bridge the gap between the train and platform -and are more environmentally friendly than the train operator’s old diesel trains.
For the last three months, punctuality figures have mostly been between 93% and 99% on routes where the new Stadler trains are running.
The first of Greater Anglia’s brand-new Stadler bi-mode trains set off for its maiden passenger voyage as the 07.47 service from Lowestoft to Norwich on 29 July 2019.
At the time, Greater Anglia’s Managing Director, Jamie Burles, said: “This is an incredibly exciting time for everyone involved with East Anglia’s railways – customers, communities and all the team here at Greater Anglia.
“Our new trains will transform rail travel across the region, bring wider economic, social, business, tourism and environmental benefits. It is the largest wholescale replacement of trains by any train company in the UK.”
Today he said: “We’re really pleased with the positive customer reaction to our new bi-mode trains.
“This has been a major project, but my team has kept up a relentless focus on bringing our fantastic new trains into service and providing a better service for customers across the region.
“I am really proud of their hard work and dedication to transforming rail travel for people in East Anglia and the passenger feedback has shown just how much the new trains are appreciated.
“We look forward to welcoming people back on board our more comfortable, quieter, more reliable and environmentally friendly services, now that travel advice has changed and everyone can take the train again.”
Ralf Warwel, UK and Ireland sales director, said: ‘The first anniversary of the introduction of the new fleet for Greater Anglia means that Stadler trains have now been running on the mainline UK railway for a year. This is a momentous achievement and we are very pleased to have reached this milestone. Working closely with our client, we look forward to the final furlong of the project, with trains for the Stansted Express line now starting to enter passenger service.’
Greater Anglia’s Stadler bi-mode trains have 167 or 229 seats, an increase of between 21% and 42% more seats on the trains they replace. In some cases, where they have replaced a single carriage train, there are 131% more seats .
The new bi-mode trains will be better for the environment as the diesel engine is newer and more efficient than on existing trains and they can take advantage of running on electricity wherever there are overhead lines.
The introduction of the bi-mode trains on Greater Anglia’s regional routes was completed on 1 February 2020. The new intercity trains have also now all been brought into service on the Norwich to London route – taking over full operation of intercity services from 25 March onwards.