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6 April, 2020 - 05:06 By Kate Sweeney

Electric start for Greater Anglia commuter train trials

The first of Greater Anglia’s new electric trains which will replace the company’s old trains used on lines into London from Essex, Cambridge, Hertfordshire and Ipswich completed its maiden voyage to Liverpool Street last week.

Made by Bombardier, the train successfully completed a test run into Liverpool Street. Technicians were checking how the new train interacts with the signalling system. It is one of a series of network tests due to take place over coming weeks to check the train’s compatibility with the Greater Anglia network.

It will have to travel over all of the electrified network at least twice in various different conditions.

As part of this testing, the train has also been on West Anglia line up to Cambridge and King’s Lynn.

On the Great Eastern Main Line, the train has been to Norwich, although the 111 trains Greater Anglia is getting from Bombardier will mainly be used south of Norwich.

Ian McConnell, Greater Anglia franchise and programmes director, said: “We are continuing with our new trains programme during the coronavirus outbreak because we still need to replace all of our old trains. The new trains have much better accessibility features than our existing trains, as well as all the mod cons that 21st rail passengers expect – and more seats.”

They are greener too: powered by electricity, 40 per cent lighter than previous trains and feature regenerative braking which delivers energy back into the electrical supply network rather than waste the energy, through heat, as in conventional systems.

New trains have to undergo a series of performance and safety tests before they can come into passenger service, starting later this year.

The five-carriage trains have 544 seats and the 10-carriage variety 1,145 seats.

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