Stansted Express

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Stansted Express
Stansted express logo.svg
Cheshunt railway station MMB 01 379026.jpg
A Greater Anglia Stansted Express Class 379 train at Cheshunt in 2014
Overview
Franchise(s)Part of Greater Anglia
15 October 2016 – 2025
Part of Abellio Greater Anglia
5 February 2012 – 15 October 2016
Part of National Express East Anglia
1 April 2004 - 4 February 2012
Part of West Anglia Great Northern
5 January 1997 - 31 March 2004
Main Route(s)Liverpool StreetStansted Airport
(West Anglia Main Line)
Fleet size10 Class 745/1 FLIRT
Stations called at5
Parent companyGreater Anglia
Reporting markSX[1]
Other
Websitestanstedexpress.com
Route map
Stansted Express
Stansted Airport
Stansted Airport
Stansted Mountfitchet
Bishop's Stortford
Harlow Town
Cheshunt
London Overground
Tottenham Hale
London Underground
Lea Bridge
Stratford
London Underground London Overground Docklands Light Railway Crossrail
Liverpool Street
London Underground London Overground Crossrail

The Stansted Express is a direct train service linking London Liverpool Street to London Stansted Airport. It is a sub-brand of Greater Anglia, the current franchise operator of the East Anglia franchise.

History[edit]

Interior of the Stansted Express Class 379

In 1986, British Rail (BR) extended the electrification of the West Anglia Main Line from Bishop's Stortford to Cambridge. Included in this plan was the construction of a new branch line—diverging from a triangular junction at Stansted Mountfitchet—to serve Stansted Airport, which in 1991 had just completed a massive expansion and was to be used for scheduled aviation passenger service for the first time. Therefore, BR decided to build a dedicated fleet of units to work the new Stansted Express service, designated as Class 322, with the service operated by the Network SouthEast sector.

Upon the privatisation of British Rail in 1996, the Stansted Express was part of West Anglia Great Northern franchise until the tender was reorganised in 2004, at which time it became part of the Greater Anglia franchise operated by one Railway (later renamed National Express East Anglia) until February 2012, when the franchise was taken over by the current operator Abellio Greater Anglia.

Operations[edit]

Unlike the Heathrow Express and the Gatwick Express (but like other services between London and Heathrow or Gatwick) the trains also stops at an intermediate station between London and the airport. The Stansted Express stops at Tottenham Hale (which provides interchange with the London Underground Victoria Line). The service takes between 47 and 56 minutes to London Liverpool Street, with trains departing every 15 minutes. Stansted Express offers several ticket types. In addition to the Standard, Business and First Class Single and Return tickets, percentage discounts are available for advance bookings, those travelling in pairs with WebDuo and groups with GroupSave. Every Stansted Express ticket comes with money-saving "2FOR1" (two-for-one) offers on some of London's favourite restaurants, shows and attractions like The London Eye, Madame Tussauds, the Sea Life Centre and Thorpe Park Resort. Oyster or Contactless payment cards are not valid on Stansted Express services to/from Stansted Airport, but can be used between Liverpool Street and Tottenham Hale.

Services per hour:

Stansted Express
Route tph Calling at Stock
London Liverpool StreetStansted Airport 2 745/1
2

Criticism[edit]

In May 2009, the former operator of the Stansted Express service, National Express abolished off-peak fares on services from Stansted Airport. Therefore, all fares are considered peak (regardless of day or time travelled) and this is reflected in the price. People who live locally can obtain a discounted ticket by producing ID, though the discounted fare is higher than the previous off-peak fare. In September 2010, advertisements for the Stansted Express at Stansted Airport were banned because they were deemed misleading, advertising a 35-minute journey time to London. The Advertising Standards Authority believed the advertisements might confuse travellers into thinking that the train would reach central London in 35 minutes. Previous operator of the service, National Express defended the adverts, stating that Tottenham Hale allows access to the Victoria Line and also stating that the adverts made no reference to the trains going into central London in 35 minutes.

Rolling stock[edit]

Current fleet[edit]

As part of the 1,300 new carriages to expand the UK's passenger rail fleet, Stansted Express was designated to receive 120 new vehicles. In February 2009, it was announced that Bombardier Transportation would produce the new trains.[2] Bombardier announced on 2 April that a contract had been signed for the delivery of the 120 coaches between December 2010 and March 2011.[3] The first of the new Class 379 units entered passenger service on 3 March 2011. The Class 379s were replaced by Class 745/1s, the first of which entered service on 28 July 2020.[4][5]

Class Image Type Top speed Number Routes operated Built
mph km/h
745/1 FLIRT Greater Anglia 745010 Colchester.jpg EMU 100 161 10 Liverpool StreetStansted Airport 2018–2020

Past fleet[edit]

Stansted Express originally used a fleet of five Class 322 EMUs until it was decided to change to a dedicated fleet of nine Class 317/7 EMUs in 2000, further supplemented by twelve Class 317/8s in 2006. The displaced Class 322s were redeployed on several other routes/franchises around the country before settling into their former role in Scotland, working services between Glasgow/Edinburgh and North Berwick; they stayed there for some time before transferring to Northern Rail, working out of Leeds. Following the arrival of the new Class 379 units on Stansted Express services, the Class 317/8s were used alongside Class 317/5 and 317/6 units as a common pool. However, since Abellio took over the East Anglia franchise on 5 February 2012, all but one of the Class 317/7s have been scrapped.

Class Image Type Top speed Number Routes operated Built Withdrawn
mph km/h
317/7 317719 NatEx East Anglia LST.JPG EMU 100 160 9 Liverpool StreetStansted Airport 1981–1982 2011
317/8 317881 at Stratford.jpg EMU 100 160 12 1981–1982 2011
322 Stnstn.jpg EMU 100 160 5 1990 2000
379 Electrostar Tottenham Hale BR station 20161116 091106 (40816506833).jpg EMU 100 160 30 2010–2011 2020

Future[edit]

Stansted Express may call at Stratford station in the future, via the West Anglia Main Line, reconnecting the two to each other.[6]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "National Rail Enquiries - Stansted Express". nationalrail.co.uk.
  2. ^ "Hitachi to power new 'British' intercity trains and Bombardier to build 120 coaches". Rail News (Stevenage). 12 February 2009.
  3. ^ https://finance.yahoo.com/news/Bombardier-Wins-a-188-Million-iw-14825741.html
  4. ^ Holden, Michael (28 July 2020). "Brand new Stansted Express trains enter service in London". RailAdvent. Retrieved 28 July 2020.
  5. ^ 2020-07-28T13:55:00+01:00. "Stansted Express Class 745/1 trainsets enter passenger service". Railway Gazette International. Retrieved 28 July 2020.
  6. ^ "Stansted targets 40-minute train trip to London". Archived from the original on 2 July 2015.

External links[edit]

Preceded by Sub-brand of West Anglia Great Northern franchise
1997–2004
Succeeded by
West Anglia Great Northern
West Anglia Great Northern franchise
Preceded by
West Anglia Great Northern
West Anglia Great Northern franchise
Sub-brand of Greater Anglia franchise
2004–2012
Succeeded by
One
Greater Anglia franchise
Preceded by
National Express East Anglia
Greater Anglia franchise
Sub-brand of Greater Anglia franchise
2012–2016
Succeeded by
Greater Anglia
East Anglia franchise
Preceded by
Abellio Greater Anglia
Greater Anglia franchise
Sub-brand of East Anglia franchise
2016–present
Incumbent