Yorkshire BLS tour raises £15k for charity

THE Branch Line Society and West Coast Railways operated the ‘Luca Pezzulo Express’ on July 20, visiting rare freight lines around Yorkshire.  Highlights included a rare trip over the remnants of the Woodhead Route, running beyond the Network Rail boundary into Liberty Steel’s Stocksbridge Steelworks, near Sheffield, and the former Tinsley

Deutsche Bahn Completes 2020 Timetable

Up until 8 April passenger train and freight operators were able to submit their preferred slots for the 2020 timetable on Germany’s rail network to Deutsche Bahn. The German state rail company received more than 72,000 applications. This also caused more than 3,000 conflicts – i.e. when different operators want

CAF Wins LeadMind Solution Contract in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia: CAF has signed a contract with Saudi Railway Company (SAR) for its LeadMind solution. Specifically, the system permits real-time remote monitoring and condition-based maintenance. As part of the contract CAF will deliver real-time and advanced analytics functionalities for the trains on the Riyadh-Qurayyat line. Riyadh-Qurayyat Line The Riyadh-Qurayyat line runs

Western Cinderella awaits attention at Williton

THE Diesel & Electric Preservation Group’s Class 52 No. D1010 Western Campaigner is seen alone in Williton diesel depot, West Somerset Railway, on June 22.  For nearly a quarter of a century this loco, when in the shed (completed late 1997), has had Class 35 No. D7018 for company. However, on this day

A West Highland celebration

In the first of two features focusing on the West Highland line, which marks its 125th anniversary this year, Keith Farr analyses steam-hauled journeys over this scenic and demanding route. Glasgow (Queen Street) high-level terminus is being transformed. Platforms are being extended to cope with more frequent and longer trains

Red Férrea de Atlántico operational support contract awarded

COLOMBIA: National infrastructure authority ANI has awarded Spanish engineering and technology consultancy Airtificial a €1·5m contract to optimise operations on the Red Férrea de Atlántico. The contract covers operations on the 876 route-km linking Bogota, Belencito, La Dorada and Chiriguná. These 914 mm gauge lines had been out of service between 2010 and

ProRail Increases Capacity for 2020 Timetable

The Dutch railway infrastructure manager ProRail has determined its 2020 timetable. This is a major logistical feat, taking into account 7,000km of track, 400 stations and the wishes of 34 freight and passenger train operators. Creating the new timetable, which always comes into force in December in European countries, is a

Scottish line to reopen in £70m project

THE disused line to the Levenmouth area of Fife is to be reopened to passenger trains at a cost of around £70 million. Transport secretary Michael Matheson said there would be stations at Leven and Cameron Bridge. The revived link would take passengers to Edinburgh in around 70 to 75 minutes. He

Coast-to-coast cruise train crosses Africa

INTERNATIONAL: On August 2 a passenger train set out on the return leg of a coast-to-coast trip across Africa. Departing from the port of Lobito on Angola’s Atlantic coast and bound for the Tanzanian port of Dar es Salaam on the Indian Ocean, the train had arrived in Lobito on

Passenger trains start to serve Yakutsk

RUSSIA: Regular passenger trains have started running on the northern section of the Yakutia Railway, following celebrations on July 27 attended by State Counsellor Vyacheslav Shtyrov, on behalf of the President of the Sakha Republic Aisen Nikolayev. Formal approval of the line for passenger operation was granted on July 19, allowing

Merseyrail top of punctuality charts

Merseyrail was the UK’s most punctual passenger train operator in 2018/19 with an average of 95.51% of trains running on time – well above the national average of 86.3%. Overall national punctuality during March was steady at 89%, but Merseyrail topped the charts with an impressive 98.1%. Close

Greater Anglia: New Intercity Train Completes Test Run

In October 2016 Swiss company Stadler signed a contract with Greater Anglia to replace their fleet of intercity trains. One of the new trains has now successfully completed a daylight test run between Norwich and Liverpool Street. Greater Anglia intercity train © Greater Anglia Test Run & Training The train underwent extensive testing

Unipart Joint Venture Wins Five-Year Contract Extension

UGL Unipart Rail Services Pty Ltd, a joint venture between Australian company UGL (a member of CIMIC Group), and Unipart has secured an approximate $900 million, five-year contract extension with Sydney Trains. Replacing the original two-year contract extension, UGL Unipart will continue the delivery of maintenance and logistics services for

DB Regio awarded E-Netz Main­fran­ken operating contract

GERMANY: Incumbent DB Regio has been awarded the E-Netz Mainfranken passenger train operating contract following a European tender conducted by Bayern railway agency BEG,  Rhein-Main transport authority RMV and Baden-Württemberg’s Ministry of Transport. The contract running for six years from December 2021 covers the operation of around 4·35 million train-km/year using

CPTM plans tourist service to Santos

BRAZIL: São Paulo suburban operator CPTM ran two test trains in late June on the São Paulo – Santos route as part of assessments ahead of the possible launch of a passenger service. The test trains ran on June 18 and 27, and form part of CPTM’s preparations to launch a

Passenger services revived on freight line

GERMANY: Passenger services were reintroduced on the 28 km Bad Bentheim – Neuenhaus route in Niedersachsen on July 6, following a €21m project to upgrade Bentheimer Eisenbahn’s previously freight-only line. Discounted preview fares were offered on the first day, with the full revenue service beginning on July 7. The line’s passenger services

Track workers were wearing ear defenders

TWO Network Rail track workers who were killed by a train in south Wales were wearing ear defenders, it has emerged, and may not have heard warnings of an approaching train. The two men were working on the line near Margam when they were struck yesterday by the 09.29 GWR intercity

Midlands Hub plan to boost east-west connectivity

UK: The Midlands Connect consortium of local authorities and regional transport bodies has unveiled proposals for a £2bn package of targeted improvements to boost rail services in the East and West Midlands. The group is seeking £25m in government funding to develop the business case for its Midlands Rail Hub programme,

From the archive: The big bird that flew too far

Words: Nick Pigott As the most powerful single-engine diesel locomotive in the world at the time, Kestrel promised a motive power revolution… but it turned out to be ‘too good for its own good’! Shunned by BR despite its 125mph speed potential, it vanished behind the Iron Curtain where it became the

Nomad Digital Secures Next Generation WiFi Services Contract in California

The Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority (CCJPA), an intercity passenger train system in California, has formally awarded Nomad Digital with the “Next Generation WiFi Services Contract”. CCJPA has procured, by the selection of Nomad Digital, the future installation, testing, operation, and maintenance of a next-generation WiFi network on board Capitol Corridor trains

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