THE ScotRail Alliance has operated a wholly electric train service on its main Edinburgh-Glasgow Queen Street route for the first time, using a combination of new trains with two older types – one of which dates back to the last few years of British Rail.
Services on the route are now being worked by ex-Great Northern Class 365s, recent Class 380s and the first of the new Hitachi Class 385 sets, whose entry into service was delayed by several months after it was discovered that their curved windscreens were distorting the drivers’ view of signals, particularly after dark. The Class 365s have been cascaded to Scotland as a stopgap, after being withdrawn from the Great Northern line between London King’s Cross and Peterborough.
The windscreens of the new Class 385 trains are now being replaced by Hitachi at Newton Aycliffe. When all the new sets have been delivered, they will be used on a number of routes in the central belt.
The first all-electric service was achieved yesterday (Wednesday).
ScotRail Alliance managing director Alex Hynes described the development as a ‘major milestone’. He continued: “A fully electric service means smoother journeys, more seats, and better services for our customers – and a greener railway. It’s all part of our plan to build the best railway Scotland has ever had.”