London North Eastern Railway

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London North Eastern Railway
LNER Logo.svg
LNER 91121 and 800113 Kings Cross.jpg
Overview
Franchise(s)InterCity East Coast
24 June 2018 – 2025
Main region(s)
Fleet size
Stations called at55
Stations operated11
Parent companyHM Government
(Department for Transport)
Reporting markGR
PredecessorVirgin Trains East Coast
Other
Websitewww.lner.co.uk
London North Eastern
Railway Routes
Inverness
Aviemore
Kingussie
Pitlochry
Perth
Gleneagles
Stirling
Falkirk Grahamston
Aberdeen
Stonehaven
Montrose
Arbroath
Dundee
Leuchars
Kirkcaldy
Inverkeithing
Glasgow Central Glasgow Subway
Motherwell
Haymarket Edinburgh Trams
Edinburgh Waverley Edinburgh Trams
Dunbar
Berwick-upon-Tweed
Alnmouth for Alnwick
Morpeth
Sunderland Tyne and Wear Metro
Newcastle Tyne and Wear Metro
Durham
Darlington
Northallerton
York
Skipton
Keighley
Bradford Forster Square
Shipley
Harrogate
Horsforth
Leeds
Wakefield Westgate
Hull Paragon
Brough
Selby
Doncaster
Retford
Lincoln
Newark North Gate
Grantham
Peterborough
Stevenage
London King's Cross London Underground
The route map for the May to December 2019 LNER timetable
The five daily Lincoln services, which are an extension of terminating services at Newark Northgate, will go live during the currency of this timetable[1]

London North Eastern Railway[2] (LNER) is a British train operating company owned by the Department for Transport (DfT). LNER operates the InterCity East Coast franchise providing long-distance inter-city services on the East Coast Main Line from London King's Cross to Yorkshire, North East England and Scotland. LNER' s primary destinations are from London to Leeds, Newcastle and Edinburgh. LNER manages 11 stations itself[3] and its trains call at 55 stations in total.

The company is owned by the Department for Transport (DfT). LNER took over the InterCity East Coast franchise in June 2018, after the previous privately owned operator Virgin Trains East Coast returned it to the government following sustained financial difficulties. The DfT intended for the company to provide services until a new public–private partnership could be established in 2020. In July 2019, it was announced that LNER had been given a direct-award to run services beyond 28 June 2020 until 2025, making it the longest franchise on the East Coast Main Line since GNER.[4]

History[edit]

In November 2017, the then Secretary of State for Transport, Chris Grayling, announced the early termination of the InterCity East Coast franchise in 2020, three years ahead of schedule, following losses on the route by operator Virgin Trains East Coast (VTEC), who had been due to pay more than £2 billion in franchise premiums to the government over the last four years of its contract.[5][6]

This was brought forward in February 2018 to mid-2018. The Department for Transport (DfT) decided to either negotiate a deal with VTEC to continue to run the franchise on a temporary non-profit basis while a new franchise competition was conducted, or to arrange for VTEC be taken over by the DfT's operator of last resort.[7][8][9] On 16 May 2018 it was announced that the latter had been decided and that LNER would take over from VTEC on 24 June 2018.[10][11] The DfT also announced that LNER would be the long-term brand applied to the InterCity East Coast franchise.[12] As part of the overall strategy for the East Coast franchise, the Secretary of State for Transport stated that Great Northern services could potentially be integrated into the operation when the Thameslink Southern & Great Northern franchise expires in 2021.[13]

LNER is the second time that a government appointed operator of last resort has taken control of the InterCity East Coast franchise; between 2009 and 2015 the franchise was operated by East Coast following National Express East Coast defaulting.[14][15]

The company's name echoes that of the London and North Eastern Railway, one of the Big Four companies which operated between 1923 and 1948.

Services[edit]

As of April 2021, the current off-peak service pattern is:[16]

London - Leeds & West Yorkshire
Route tph Calling at Peak-time extensions
London King's Cross to Leeds 1 Peterborough, Doncaster and Wakefield Westgate 2tpd extends to Bradford Forster Square via Shipley

1tpd extends to Skipton via Keighley

1 Stevenage, Grantham, Doncaster and Wakefield Westgate
1tp2h extends to Harrogate with 2tpd calling at Horsforth
London - Lincoln or York
Route tph Calling at Peak-time extensions
London King's Cross to Lincoln or York 1 Stevenage, Peterborough, Grantham and Newark North Gate
1tp2h extends to Lincoln
1tp2h extends to York calling at Retford and Doncaster
1tpd extends to Hull
London - Newcastle - Edinburgh
Route tph Calling at Peak-time extensions
London King's Cross to Edinburgh Waverley via Newcastle 1 York, Darlington, Newcastle, Berwick-upon-Tweed 1tpd extends to Inverness
1tpd extends to Stirling
4tpd extends to Aberdeen (3 from London King's Cross, 1 from Leeds)
1 Peterborough, Newark North Gate, Doncaster, York, Northallerton (1tp2h), Darlington, Durham, Newcastle, Alnmouth (1tp2h)
Northallerton and Alnmouth are usually served by alternate trains along with alternateing with cross country
1tpd extends to Glasgow Central
1tpd extends to Sunderland

An expanded service to Lincoln began on 21 October 2019 when four terminating services at Newark Northgate were extended into Lincoln.[17] This is in addition to the sole one train per day service, which in all, now provides five out and back workings to and from London King's Cross. LNER also plans for December 2019 timetable change that a sixth return service to London from Lincoln will be introduced and 5 extra services on a Saturday will begin from 7 December 2019.[18] From December 2019, LNER introduced a Harrogate to London service 6 times a day.[19] LNER expects to introduce two-hourly services to Bradford and a daily service to Huddersfield in May 2020 when more Azuma trains have been introduced.[20][21] The Middlesbrough service is expected to begin in December 2021 after infrastructure work required to run the service is completed.[22]

Future destinations include a proposed service to Middlesbrough, though the Rail Minister, Jo Johnson, told Parliament that it was dependent on the Azumas being brought into service on the ECML and other schemes in progress that would provide sufficient capacity to enable the service to run.[23] An additional constraint is the lack of a suitably long enough platform at Middlesbrough, which would necessitate a new build at an estimated cost of £20 million.[24]

Named trains[edit]

London North Eastern Railway operates a number of named passenger trains:

Name Origin Destination Other details
Flying Scotsman Edinburgh Waverley London King's Cross Service began 1862 in both directions; named by LNER in 1924. Now Edinburgh to London and only stops at Newcastle railway station for a driver/crew swap.
Highland Chieftain London King's Cross Inverness The longest LNER route
Northern Lights London King's Cross Aberdeen
West Riding Limited Bradford Forster Square London King's Cross Operates from Bradford to London only.

Rolling stock[edit]

Three generations of East Coast Main Line trains at York. A Class 43 InterCity 125 (left) with a Class 800 Azuma (centre) and a InterCity 225 (right)

LNER inherited a fleet of InterCity 125 and InterCity 225s from Virgin Trains East Coast (VTEC). Since September 2016, VTEC had hired three Class 90s from DB Cargo for use on services to Newark, York and Leeds. LNER inherited these locomotives and retained them until June 2019 to cover for the shortage of Class 91 locomotives.

In May 2019, the first lot of Class 800 trains began entering service with the Class 801 trains also following on in September. These units are based on the Hitachi A-train design and LNER retained the Azuma brand for the units which was originally designated by VTEC.[25] The initial operation of these units allowed the InterCity 125 and InterCity 225 fleets to be replaced gradually. The first Azuma train to enter service was a 9-carriage 800/1 on 15 May on the Leeds route from King's Cross.[26] Other subclasses of the 800 and 801 variants entered service afterwards, with the first two 5-carriage 801/1 sets entering service on 16 September operating as a 10-carriage train, the first lot of 5-carriage 800/2 sets entering service to coincide with the launch of the new King's Cross - Lincoln services on 21 October and the first two 9-carriage 801/2 sets entering service on 18 November.[27][28][29][30] As of May 2021, all units in the Azuma fleet have now entered service following unit 800109's return to service, which was the unit involved in the derailment at Neville Hill TMD in November 2019 and subsequently had to undergo repairs.[31][32]

Following the withdrawal of the InterCity 125 fleet in December 2019, it was previously thought that the InterCity 225 fleet would be fully withdrawn by June 2020.[33] However, LNER announced on 29 January 2020 that they would be retaining a limited number of the InterCity 225 fleet to deliver all of the benefits of their December 2021 timetable.[34] In September 2020, Eversholt Rail Group and London North Eastern Railway extended their lease to 10 by 2023. In addition, there are options to make it operational until 2024. It will be overhauled at the Wabtec Doncaster plant.[35][36]

At the end of service on 15 January 2021, the remaining serviceable InterCity 225 sets went into storage temporarily as part of the East Coast Upgrade.[37] Originally, the plan was to return the sets to service for 7 June 2021 but instead the first set re-entered service on 11 May 2021 due to a number of Azuma sets having to be taken out of service.[38]

Current fleet[edit]

Trainset[clarification neededdiscuss]  Class  Image  Type   Top speed  Number  Carriages   Notes 
 mph   km/h 
Locomotive hauled sets
InterCity 225 91 91108 LNER Kings Cross.jpg Electric locomotive 140 225 12 7 sets formed of 9 carriages each Seating Map

Were out of service between 15 January and 11 May 2021.

Mark 4 Virgin Trains East Coast Mk 4 by Matt Buck.jpg Passenger carriage 135
Driving Van Trailer Kings Cross - LNER 82202 rear of ecs.JPG Control car 8
Multiple units
Hitachi AT300 800/1 Azuma Edinburgh - LNER 800108 in the new bay platform.jpg Bi-mode multiple unit 140 225 13 9 Seating Map
800/2 Azuma 10 5
LNER Class 800 1.png

LNER Class 800 2.png

801/1 Azuma 801220 LNER Azuma Kings Cross.jpg Electric multiple unit 12 5
801/2 Azuma 30 9
LNER Class 801 1.png

LNER Class 801 2.png

Past fleet[edit]

The takeover from the Azuma fleet has allowed all fourteen of LNER's HST sets to be withdrawn from service. The last three sets with LNER worked their last services on 15 December 2019.[39] Nine of the fourteen HST sets transferred to East Midlands Railway, with 2 power cars from one set transferring to CrossCountry to supplement its existing 5 sets.[40]

Trainset[clarification neededdiscuss]  Class  Image  Type   Top speed   Number  Carriages  Transferred to
 mph   km/h 
InterCity 125 43 Gleneagles - LNER 43305 up Highland Chielftain.JPG Diesel locomotive 125 200 32 14 sets formed of 9 carriages each
  • Storage (7)
Mark 3 IC125@40 - TS 42210 at York.JPG Passenger carriage 130
InterCity 225 91 91108 LNER Kings Cross.jpg Electric locomotive 140 225 17 17 sets formed of 9 carriages each
  • Stored (11)
  • D.A.T.S. (2)
  • Scrapped (5)
Mark 4 Virgin Trains East Coast Mk 4 by Matt Buck.jpg Passenger carriage 158
  • Stored (127)
  • Scrapped (19)
Driving Van Trailer Kings Cross - LNER 82202 rear of ecs.JPG Control car 19
  • Stored (15)
  • Scrapped (1)

Depots[edit]

London North Eastern Railway train fleet is stored and maintained at the following depot

References[edit]

  1. ^ "LNER Timetable" (PDF). lner.co.uk. Notes C and D. p. 4. Archived (PDF) from the original on 22 May 2020. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
  2. ^ Companies House extract company no 4659712 Archived 17 May 2018 at the Wayback Machine London North Eastern Railway Limited
  3. ^ "Estimates of station usage | ORR Data Portal". dataportal.orr.gov.uk. Retrieved 9 March 2021.
  4. ^ Nationalisation of East Coast mainline extended until 2025 Archived 10 July 2019 at the Wayback Machine The Parliamentary Review, 7 July 2019
  5. ^ Elder, Bryce (29 November 2017). "Stagecoach soars after government intervenes on contract". Financial Times. London: Nikkei. Archived from the original on 3 December 2017. Retrieved 2 December 2017.
  6. ^ Topham, Gwyn (29 November 2017). "East Coast rail 'bailout' could cost taxpayers hundreds of millions". The Guardian. London: Guardian Media Group. Archived from the original on 2 December 2017. Retrieved 2 December 2017.
  7. ^ "Stagecoach to lose East Coast Mainline rail franchise". BBC News. 5 February 2018. Archived from the original on 5 February 2018. Retrieved 5 February 2018.
  8. ^ "Stagecoach East Coast deal to end early". 6 February 2018. Archived from the original on 15 July 2018. Retrieved 21 July 2018 – via www.bbc.co.uk.
  9. ^ Virgin Trains East Coast franchise to end within months Archived 17 May 2018 at the Wayback Machine Railway Gazette International 6 February 2018
  10. ^ "East coast main line trains back in public hands again next month". Archived from the original on 17 May 2018. Retrieved 16 May 2018.
  11. ^ "LNER". www.lnerailway.co.uk. Archived from the original on 16 May 2018. Retrieved 16 May 2018.
  12. ^ "Short-term Intercity East Coast train operator 2018 options report" (PDF). May 2018. p. 20 (numbered 16). Archived (PDF) from the original on 29 November 2020. Retrieved 16 May 2018.
  13. ^ East Coast rail update Archived 16 May 2018 at the Wayback Machine Secretary of State for Transport 16 May 2018
  14. ^ "East Coast rail change confirmed". BBC News Online. 5 November 2009. Archived from the original on 24 August 2017. Retrieved 16 May 2018.
  15. ^ "Stagecoach and Virgin win East Coast mainline rail franchise". BBC News. 27 November 2014. Archived from the original on 30 September 2018. Retrieved 16 May 2018.
  16. ^ "London North Eastern Railway timetables". Archived from the original on 19 December 2019. Retrieved 18 December 2019.
  17. ^ [1] Archived 30 August 2019 at the Wayback Machine lner website: 30 August 2019
  18. ^ Pritchard, Robert, ed. (June 2019). "Expanded Lincoln-London service in September". Today's Railways. No. 210. Sheffield: Platform 5. p. 17. ISSN 1475-9713.
  19. ^ New Harrogate-London rail times revealed Archived 17 May 2019 at the Wayback Machine Harrogate Advertiser; 17 May 2019
  20. ^ "LNER begins rollout of azuma trains". Archived from the original on 14 May 2019. Retrieved 22 May 2019.
  21. ^ Promised improvements to Leeds train services delayed by up to TWO YEARS Archived 22 May 2020 at the Wayback Machine LeedsLive; 24 April 2019
  22. ^ Modern Railways September 2019 edition p.11
  23. ^ Harris, Nigel, ed. (26 September 2018). "Plan for Azuma's to Middlesbrough". Rail Magazine. No. 862. Peterborough: Bauer Media. p. 21. ISSN 0953-4563.
  24. ^ Johnston, Howard (24 October 2018). "Regional News". Rail Magazine. No. 864. Peterborough: Bauer Media. p. 26. ISSN 0953-4563.
  25. ^ "LNER". Brand Cooke. Archived from the original on 30 January 2020. Retrieved 30 January 2020.
  26. ^ "Hitachi Azuma Enters Service for LNER". Railway-News. 16 May 2019. Archived from the original on 29 January 2020. Retrieved 23 November 2019.
  27. ^ September 16 launch for Class 801 Azumas on London-Leeds route Archived 1 August 2019 at the Wayback Machine Rail 1 August 2019
  28. ^ "LNER launches Azumas to Lincoln". Railway Gazette International. 21 October 2019. Archived from the original on 22 October 2019. Retrieved 23 November 2019.
  29. ^ Britain's Intercity Express Programme reaches financial close Archived 12 June 2018 at the Wayback Machine International Railway Journal 25 July 2012
  30. ^ Intercity Rail Travel Presentation Archived 12 June 2018 at the Wayback Machine Department for Transport 27 June 2011
  31. ^ "Watch the moment damaged Azuma involved in depot crash passes through Leeds Station at walking pace". www.yorkshirepost.co.uk. Archived from the original on 29 November 2020. Retrieved 6 November 2020.
  32. ^ 8 carriages of 800109 repaired Modern Railways issue 870 March 2021 page 34
  33. ^ "FROM THE ARCHIVES: Traction transition: HST to Azuma". www.railmagazine.com. Archived from the original on 21 January 2020. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
  34. ^ Railway, London North Eastern (29 January 2020). "If you're a fan of our IC225 trains, you can continue to enjoy them for a bit longer. We are retaining a number of them in order to deliver all of the benefits of our Dec 2021 timetable plans. Here is our favourite, For the Fallen, at York Station.pic.twitter.com/ry89sQ45JE". @LNER. Archived from the original on 30 January 2020. Retrieved 30 January 2020.
  35. ^ IC225 Fleet Lease Extension and Overhaul - Eversholt Rail Limited. Retrieved 2020-12-25.
  36. ^ LNER to retain 10 Class 91s up to 2023, as overhaul contracts awarded - RailAdvent. Retrieved 2020-12-25.
  37. ^ Horne, David (15 January 2021). "Last day in service for our speed record-breaking #Class91 locomotives today... for a while". Twitter.
  38. ^ "LNER reintroduces stored InterCity 225 trains into service". Rail Technology Magazine. Retrieved 12 May 2021.
  39. ^ "VIDEO - Fans bid farewell to the iconic InterCity 125 at York". Minster FM. 15 December 2019. Archived from the original on 16 December 2019. Retrieved 16 December 2019.
  40. ^ "East Midlands Railway to acquire HS diesel trains from LNER". Business Traveller. Archived from the original on 16 December 2019. Retrieved 16 December 2019.

External links[edit]

Media related to London North Eastern Railway at Wikimedia Commons

Preceded by
Virgin Trains East Coast
Operator of InterCity East Coast franchise
2018-2025
Succeeded by
Incumbent