First TransPennine Express (FTPE) is pleased to note today's (14/9) announcement by London Midland (LM) announcing that a preferred supplier has been chosen for the manufacture and maintenance of new electric trains, which are planned to run between Manchester and Scotland from December 2013.

Train operator, London Midland has announced that Siemens Plc has been named as the preferred bidder for the manufacture and maintenance of new electric rolling stock and Angel Trains as the preferred financier.

As part of this procurement, subject to DfT approval of the business case, 40 of the new electric vehicles being procured by LM are likely to be novated to FTPE as the operator of the Manchester - Scotland route in anticipation of the route's electrification by the end of 2013.  This novation of the rolling stock contracts to FTPE can be directed by DfT as part of its Franchise Agreement.

The award winning train operator currently has a diesel fleet of 51 Class 185s and 9 Class 170s.  Subject to contract award FTPE, which operates nearly 300 services a day and carries around 24 million passengers per year, is set to see its fleet of vehicles increase by a further 10 x 4-carriage trains The new trains are planned to be delivered by the end of 2013 and will be used to operate services between Manchester and Scotland. The increase in fleet numbers will mean that FTPE will then be able to utilise their existing fleet to strengthen services on its busiest routes and services across the Pennines.

Vernon Barker, FTPE Managing Director says: "We welcome the announcement that a preferred supplier has been announced for new trains which should allow FTPE and our customers to benefit from more seats across our busiest routes and services in the next few years."


"By selecting a preferred supplier a significant step has been taken towards the delivery of much needed capacity for railways in the north of England by the end of 2013. London Midland is leading the procurement process as part of the government's HLOS programme.  FTPE will work with London Midland, DfT and industry partners so that the new trains can be brought into service as quickly as possible."

With an increase in the number of vehicles available, FTPE will be able to provide much needed additional capacity for the major northern cities across our network."

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