Rail Express editor Richard Clinnick tells us more about what’s coming up in the November issue.
Reporting on the railways in 2023 is certainly never dull and makes the November edition of Rail Express simply unmissable.
There is so much happening now, all of which his covered in the latest edition, with CrossCountry removing the final High Speed Trains from traffic in mid-September, before operating a farewell charter on September 26, using two of the three power cars outshopped in retro liveries. Not only do we cover that, but David Russell has written a fascinating feature looking at the history of cross-country HST operating, going back 42 years.
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Of course, it would be remiss not to mention the prime minister’s controversial decision to scrap the Northern Leg of HS2 and announced a £36 billion Network North project, which includes schemes that have subsequently disappeared from the original document and others, such as light rail to Manchester Airport, which already exist!
It’s not all doom and gloom. VTG Rail has launched Britain’s first digital wagon, and we have the details surrounding that including where the trial is taking place and what happens next. This is a project Rail Express will continue to cover in detail. On Merseyside, battery-powered Class 777/1s have begun operating to Headbolt Lane, the first extension of the Merseyrail network in 29 years.
The Department for Transport (DfT) has awarded Avanti West Coast and CrossCountry new National Rail Contracts (NRCs). For the former, the Hitachi Class 805s get ever closer to entering traffic and No. 805005 has become the first to receive the operator’s colours, while for XC it will receive seven Class 221s from AWC.
In our features, I visited Dawlish to find out how Network Rail is keeping the railway running following the project to rebuild the famous sea wall, while there is a report into the repercussions from the decision by TransPennine Express to axe its Class 68-hauled Mk.5As from December.
Our Rail Express Modeller section features news on the imminent arrival of Heljan’s ‘O’ gauge Deltic and the arrival of several new models heralds a busy Autumn.
There are reviews of Hornby Class 40s, Ruston 48DS, Heljan’s NBL 10800 is reviewed alongside Realtrack’s retooled Class 156 and Heljan PWM shunter and EFE Rail’s ‘N’ gauge Clay Tiger.
Modelling is not left out, with the re-issue of the Hornby Class 40 with indicator disc marker lights by Hornby has been widely welcomed. It is an ideal subject for budget modelling projects including DCC- controlled illuminated marker and tail lights.
Published on October 20, the November edition of Rail Express cannot be missed. I hope you enjoy it.
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