Three former Heathrow Express train carriages have been moved to the site of Siemens Mobility’s new train manufacturing plant at Goole in East Yorkshire where they will be used as a training and visitor facility.
Heathrow Express has now replaced its fleet of Class 332 trains with former Great Western Railway Class 387 Electrostars. The older trains, which were built by Siemens and CAF in Spain in the late 1990s, have been running the shuttle service between London Paddington and Heathrow Airport for over 20 years, clocking up some three million miles each year.
Now redundant, three of the carriages have been moved to Goole and rebranded with information about the Goole investment and Siemens Mobility’s work at the forefront of the UK rail industry. They will be used as a facility for training apprentices and hosting schoolchildren and other visitors to the site.
One carriage also carries thank you messages to the NHS for helping the country through the COVID-19 challenges.
Sambit Banerjee, managing director of rolling stock and customer services for Siemens Mobility in the UK, said: “These trains, which were part of a fleet that carried six million travellers a year, have come to the end of their passenger life but now have an important new role as part of our Goole rail village.
“They will form the perfect backdrop for our apprentices to learn new skills, for schoolchildren to be inspired to be part of a new pipeline of talent for the rail industry, and for other visitors to appreciate the latest digital technologies that are revolutionising the rail network.
“A group of our talented young graduates and apprentices are working on plans to design and equip the trains for their new use and we’re looking forward to visitors experiencing them in the future.”
He concluded: “A huge thank you to Aura Brand Solutions who ‘wrapped’ the carriages, on our behalf, to turn our vision into reality.”
The new train factory is scheduled to open in 2023, when it will begin manufacturing trains for the Piccadilly line on the London Underground. Siemens Mobility’s investment of up to £200 million in the Goole facility will create up to 700 direct jobs, with a further 250 roles during the construction phase and an additional 1,700 indirect supply chain opportunities.
A neighbouring research, development and innovation cluster, and co-located supplier facilities, will also form part of the Goole development.