British Rail Class 315
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|British Rail Class 315|
Class 315 No. 315858, rebranded with the National Express East Anglia stripe in the 'One' Railway livery at Romford
The refurbished interior of a Class 315
|In service||1980 - Current|
|Family name||BREL 1972 "PEP"|
|Constructed||1980 - 1981|
|Refurbishment||All 61 Greater Anglia sets 2004 - 2008
|Number built||61 trainsets|
|Formation||4 cars per trainset|
|Fleet numbers||315801 - 315861|
|Car length||19.80 m (65 ft 0 in)|
|Width||2.82 m (9 ft 3 in)|
|Height||3.58 m (11 ft 9 in)|
|Maximum speed||75 mph (121 km/h)|
|Weight||127.5 tonnes (125.5 long tons; 140.5 short tons)|
|Power output||656 kW (880 hp)|
|Electric system(s)||25 kV AC Overhead|
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in) standard gauge|
British Rail Class 315 alternating current (AC) electric multiple units (EMU) were built by BREL at York works from 1980 to 1981. They were the fifth and final variety of British Rail's then-standard 1972 design for suburban EMUs, which eventually encompassed 755 vehicles and five Classes (Class 313/314/315/507/508). Like the Glasgow-based Class 314 units, they are only able to operate from the 25 kV overhead line. The fleet works inner-suburban services on the Great Eastern Main Line and the Lea Valley Lines run by the train operating company Greater Anglia out of London Liverpool Street.
Each Class 315 unit is formed of four vehicles, some vehicles are attached to another set of four vehicles to make 8 vehicles and some maybe attached to another four to make 12 vehicles on long distance journeys, such as ones to Southend Victoria or Southminster (Greater Anglia). The vehicles include: Driving Motor Standard Open (DMSO), Pantograph Trailer Standard Open (PTSO), Trailer Standard Open (TSO), and Driving Motor Standard Open (DMSO). Each DMSO carries four traction motors (315801-841 originally had Brush TM61-53 and 315842-861 had GEC G310AZ but these motors are interchangeable and nowadays any type can be found on any unit) rated at 110hp each and a main compressor and air reservoir which carries air for the brakes and suspension. The door system which was pneumatic has been replaced by an all electric door system. The PTSO carries the main and auxillery transformers, batteries and battery charger, Stone Faiveley AMBR Mk.1 pantograph, vacuum circuit breaker and auxiliary compressor. The TSO carries no equipment other than that which is standard to all coaches.
The coaches only contain standard seating and have no toilet facilities. Car numbering is as follows:
- 64461-64582 - DMSO
- 71281-71341 - PTSO
- 71389-71449 - TSO
Each 4-car set is able to seat 318 passengers.
A refurbishment programme commenced from mid-2004, when National Express East Anglia (then 'one' Railway) contracted Bombardier to carry out the refurbishment of all 61 units, starting with the ex-First Great Eastern examples. The low-back 3+2 seating is retained, so the capacity stays the same.
The Class 315 units replaced the life-expired Class 306 units. Greater Anglia are refurbishing a third of their trains and so this might mean they aren't going to replace them whilst they are still in charge of them.
Following the privatisation of British Rail, the Class 315s were divided between First Great Eastern (43 units) and West Anglia Great Northern (18 units). The leasing company HSBC Rail has owned the entire Class 315 fleet since privatisation, though it has since been renamed Eversholt Rail Group.
From 1 April 2004, National Express East Anglia (NXEA) won the inaugural Greater Anglia rail franchise, which combined the previous operations of both First Great Eastern and WAGN, meaning the two Class 315 fleets were combined. The franchise was initially known as 'One' but was rebranded National Express East Anglia (NXEA) by its parent company, National Express Group in February 2008.
The current operator of the 315s is Abellio Greater Anglia, which replaced National Express from February 2012. They are replacing the old livery on all of these trains and are refreshing the interiors to include a Passenger Information System and a flexible space for wheelchairs and cycles which includes tip-up seating and 'call to aid' buttons.
The Class 315s operate local services out of London Liverpool Street to Shenfield (the popular Shenfield Metro service) on the Great Eastern Main Line and Cheshunt, Enfield Town and Chingford on the Lea Valley Lines. They are also seen on the Hertford East Branch Line and Upminster Branch Line between Romford and Upminster, a duty shared with Class 317s and Class 321s.
They can occasionally be found further afield, running on the Great Eastern and West Anglia Main Lines to Bishop's Stortford, Stansted Airport, Broxbourne, Cambridge, Ely, Southminster, Braintree, Clacton-on-Sea, Colchester, Harwich Town, Walton-on-the-Naze, Ipswich and Southend Victoria. They cover for unavailable Class 360s or Class 321s on these services as often 315s are the only spare trains available. During National Express' operation of the franchise, it has been rare for 315s to run beyond Shenfield, but since Abellio began running the railway, the practice become more common.
Initially, the Shenfield Metro and Upminster Branch Line services used only sets 315801-843 and the Lea Valley Lines only 315844-861, reflecting the allocations of the former franchises. All 61 sets are now used interchangeably, operating out of Ilford depot.
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It has been announced recently that a number of the Class 315s are to be refurbished with new interiors which will allow them to meet new DDA regulations due to come into effect in 2020.
There seems to be a good future for a number of the Class 315s once they have been withdrawn from service in East Anglia and that is because a proposal is that some of the class 315's will be used to work services on the Cardiff Valley Lines network once electrification work is completed by 2019.
Five Class 315 sets have now been named:
- 315812 - "London Borough of Newham Host Borough 2012 Olympics Bid" (denamed)
- 315817 - "Transport for London"
- 315829 - "London Borough of Havering Celebrating 40 Years"
- 315845 - "Herbie Woodward"
- 315857 - "Stratford Connections"
|Class||Operator||No. Built||Year Built||Cars per Set||Unit nos.|
|Class 315||Greater Anglia||61||1980–1981||4||315801 - 315861|
315857 operating with WAGN at Cheshunt in July 2004, in a non-standard livery promoting Hertfordshire transport partnership Intalink.
Refurbished Class 315 No. 315804 at Enfield Town. This EMU was first overhauled by First Great Eastern, hence the revised end design.
A refurbished Class 315 No. 315833 at London Liverpool Street
A refurbished Class 315 No. 315838 at Chingford
A refurbished Class 315 No. 315857 at White Hart Lane, note the white stripe with National Express branding and the removal of the rainbow stripes
- "News Desk". Railway Herald (125). 2008-03-21. p. 4. Retrieved 2011-07-15.
- National Express invests in upgrade of class 315 fleet - National Express East Anglia. Retrieved 2011-07-15.
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