WHAT a year 2018 is already shaping up to be. I’m not talking about the ‘Beast from the East’, although the railway companies and all their staff have to be commended for the way they dealt with the extreme weather at the end of February to keep lines open and run as many services as possible. No, what I mean is that we are about to see tremendous changes happening in a relatively short period of time.
This year will see widespread use of IETs on the Great Western and their introduction to the East Coast Main Line; the start of Elizabeth Line services through the Crossrail tunnels; a massive expansion of the Thameslink network; the first new trains on a complete revamp of the Greater Anglia fleet; loco-hauled trains across the Pennines; new sleeper stock between London and Scotland; the first ‘D-Train’ conversions in passenger service; and many other new trains introduced.
It will seem like it’s happened almost overnight, but it’s the result of years of planning that is now paying off as the new trains and services are delivered.
Make no mistake, the end of this railway year will look very different to the start.
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