Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Intery City 90's on the Great Eastern

In April 2015 90008 'The East Anglian' crosses the river Stour at Cattawade, near Manningtree with a Norwich - London train.

90012 'The Royal Anglian Regiment' approaches Diss with a Norwich -
London train. The loco is freshly repainted into Abellio Greater Anglia
colours, but much of the stock is still in former 'One' livery. 21/05/2015.

It is often, and rightly, considered that the UK is a predominantly 'unit only' country when it comes to our train fleet. It is certainly true that the vast majority of our passenger services are in the hands of multiple units- one route however where loco haulage clings on is the Great Eastern Main Line from London Liverpool St to Norwich. A stronghold of the class 86 since it's electrification it was in 2004 that a shift in traction brought class the late 80's built 'class 90' to the route. The intercity allocated locomotives 90001-90015 were finishing their days on Virgin West Coast duties being displaced by class 390 'Pendolino' EMU's.

The class 90's originally made the journey over to Anglia in unbranded ex-Virgin colours and while none of the locomotives ever carried the distinctive Anglia turquoise livery they have carried several schemes since. Only now in mid 2016 does the fleet once again display a uniform colour scheme, that of Abellio Greater Anglia.
Nobody seems to know how long this fleet has left to offer the London - Norwich Intercity route with several suggestions being made as to their replacement- possibly with new build EMU's or maybe displaced 'Intercity 224' sets from the ECML? For now the class 90's and Mk3's continue to give a comfortable and reliable service on one of the countries shorter InterCity routes.
The former 'one' livery, with National Express stripe and Greater Anglia branding. 90004 'City of Chelmsford' crosses the Stour at Cattawade. 21/05/2015

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