Cornwall passengers travel on first Intercity Express

Cameras were waiting at Penzance as the first 802 arrived this morning

THE first passengers are travelling in Cornwall on a Hitachi Intercity Express. The GWR Class 802 bi mode train left Penzance with invited guests on board at 10.28, and is now taking them to Exeter, picking up more guests en route.

The first 802s should enter service within a few days, according to GWR insiders, although the launch of public services is likely to be ‘soft’, without any advance publicity.

Managing director Mark Hopwood confirmed that this is very likely. “I would say that their introduction is imminent,” he told Railnews. “Quite likely to be one day next week.”

The 802s will then enter service one by one, displacing the long-serving HSTs between London, Devon and Cornwall over the next few months.

Class 800 bi mode sets have already been running as far as Devon, where they have been used on some of the summer intercity services to Torbay, but they are not expected to be taken any further west.