East Coast Trains

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East Coast Trains
FirstGroup.svg
Overview
Franchise(s) Open-access operator
Not subject to franchising
Starts May 2021
Stations called at 5
Parent company FirstGroup

East Coast Trains[1] is a future open access operator in the United Kingdom owned by FirstGroup. It has been granted permission by the Office of Rail & Road to operate up to five return services per day between London King's Cross and Edinburgh via the East Coast Main Line from May 2021.

History[edit]

In 2015, the Office of Rail & Road called for expressions of interest for open access operators to bid for extra paths on the East Coast Main Line. In May 2016, FirstGroup were granted a track-access agreement for five services in each direction from May 2021.[2][3][4]

Services[edit]

East Coast Trains will operate five services a day in each direction between London King's Cross and Edinburgh calling at Stevenage, Newcastle and Morpeth.[4]

Operations[edit]

FirstGroup intends to compete with existing services on the London-Edinburgh route by offering tickets with an average fare price of £25 and free Wi-Fi connectivity for all passengers.[5]

Rolling stock[edit]

East Coast Trains will procure a fleet of five 125mph electric multiple units. All trains will have buffet cars and only one class of seating accommodation, with no first class carriages available.[4][6][7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Companies House extract company no 8765536 East Coast Trains Limited
  2. ^ Applications for the East Coast Main Line Office of Rail & Road 12 May 2016
  3. ^ First Group to run Edinburgh to London budget rail service BBC News 12 May 2016
  4. ^ a b c VTEC and FirstGroup granted East Coast Main Line paths Railway Gazette International 12 May 2016
  5. ^ Budget East Coast Train Service Is Approved Sky News 12 May 2016
  6. ^ "First Group launches London - Edinburgh open access plans" Rail Magazine issue 770 18 March 2015 page 20
  7. ^ "First Group plans ECML service" Today's Railways issue 161 May 2015 page 13