Rail passengers in Wales are benefiting from more comfortable trains following LNWR’s complete overhaul and refurbishment of 24 Arriva Trains Wales’ Class 158 DMU* trains.
The £9.5 million contract, commissioned by Angel Trains and delivered by leading UK rail maintenance specialist LNWR, started in early 2011 and was completed successfully with the final fully refurbished train now back in service on the Cambrian Line.
The refurbishment, which took place at LNWR’s heavy maintenance and paint facility in Crewe, saw a complete re-fit of the trains to create a new carriage interior. Passengers have been so impressed with the work carried out that many thought that the trains were new.
Alongside new interiors and seating, LNWR has also fitted:
- a new Passenger Information System which improves journey information for Arriva’s customers
- low energy lighting that reduces demand on the train’s electrical systems and improves fuel consumption, which helps contribute towards reducing overall CO2 emissions
- power points so that passengers can now plug in their phones and laptops adding to the convenience and enjoyment of their journey, and
- a new air-conditioning system in the cab to make the trains more comfortable for Arriva’s drivers.
The trains have been repainted in Arriva’s eye-catching livery and have new windows. Work has also been carried out on the door entry system on the trains to extend their life and improve reliability.
LNWR managing director, Mark Knowles, said: “Renovating the fleet was a major project and the experienced team we have at Crewe were central to its success.
“We have balanced delivering a consistently high-quality refurbishment with turning around one unit every three weeks, which was good news for both passengers and our clients. Our ability to manage complex projects and keep trains out of service for the minimum amount of time will be beneficial as we continue to bid for future contracts.”
Mike Bagshaw, Commercial Director for Arriva Trains Wales said; ‘We are pleased with the result of the work carried out by LNWR and funded by the Welsh Government. This project has totally transformed our Class 158 fleet and is an important investment in Welsh rail services’
‘Passengers that have used the 158s already in service have provided us with lots of positive feedback in terms of the comfort, fresh presentation and the provision of power sockets – an important feature for passengers making long distance journeys.’
Angel Trains own the Class 158 fleet which is leased to Arriva Trains Wales. Mark Hicks, Technical Director at Angel Trains , said: “This is the first major contract we have carried out with LNWR and they have demonstrated the team-based approach needed for a project of this complexity.
“Angel Trains, LNWR and Arriva Trains Wales worked closely to create a robust project plan that has delivered significant investment in rolling stock and created a modernised fleet which is ready to deliver many more years of service for rail passengers in Wales.”