Railwatch

Published by Railfuture

Railwatch is the quarterly magazine of Railfuture, which is free to members.

Non-members can subscribe to Railwatch, receiving it by post, by clicking


Railwatch 078 - December 1998

Railwatch - Piggyback pioneer

rw078e.jpeg - 29kB

While American-owned English Welsh & Scottish Railway is importing new freight locomotives from General Motors, Freightliner has chosen to have British-built class 47 locos rebuilt by Brush as a class 57. The first rebuilt loco, named Freightllner Pioneer was used to launch Freightliner's piggyback service from Manchester and Tilbury, Essex. One of the partners in the piggyback venture is Exel Logistics Tankfreight.

One effect of the influx of imported locomotives will be that some old British locos will be made redundant. Rather than scrapping them, they too could be cost-effectively rebuilt for other purposes.

Also soon to be made redundant will be large numbers of good quality Mk2 and Mk 3 coaches currently being operating by Virgin which is planning to buy tilting trains and diesel multiple units for CrossCountry.

There is a good case for overhauling and refurbishing at least some of these coaches, rather than letting them be broken up or sold abroad.

With the rebuilt locos - possibly re-engined class 47s - they could work as push-pull sets on the busiest parts of the former Regional Railways network, while also providing high-capacity train sets for major tourist destinations at the height of the season. With a push-pull set-up, the trains would be able to reverse at such stations as Ely, Swansea and Carmarthen.

Because of the fragmented structure of the privatised railways, it may be difficult for any one operator to contemplate such a venture but small conversion grants from the new rail authority could give the railway enormous flexibility to cope with market fluctuations at very low cost to the industry and the taxpayer overall.

Note: contact details (postal and email addresses, along with telephone numbers) in old editions of Railwatch out of date. Click CONTACT US for latest contact details.


[Issue 78 Index]

[Railwatch Home] [Prev Issue (77)] [Railwatch Issues] [RIS Progress Reports] [Next Issue (79)] [Railfuture Home]


Railfuture is an independent, voluntary group representing rail users in Britain with 20,000 affiliated and individual members. It is not funded by train companies, political parties or trade unions, and all members have an equal say.

Railfuture campaigns for cheap and convenient rail services for everyone; better links for buses, bikes and pedestrians; policies to get more heavy lorries on to rail; new lines, stations and freight terminals. In short, a better rail service and a bigger rail system for both passengers and freight.

Railfuture is pro-rail but not anti-road or anti-air. However, we campaign for a switch from road and air to rail. We do not interfere in the running of the railway - we campaign for the quality and range of services provided, not how they are delivered. We are the only champion of all rail users.


Railfuture is the campaigning name of Railfuture Ltd.

A not-for-profit Company Limited by Guarantee.

Registered in England and Wales No. 05011634.

Registered Office: Edinburgh House, 1-5 Bellevue Road, Clevedon, North Somerset BS21 7NP (for legal correspondence only).

All other correspondence to 24 Chedworth Place, Tattingstone, Suffolk IP9 2ND


© Copyright Railfuture Ltd 2021.

Railfuture is happy for extracts to be used by journalists, researchers and students. We would, however, appreciate a mention of Railfuture in any article, website or programme. Except with Railfuture's express written permission, no one should distribute or commercially exploit the content.


Privacy Statement

Click Privacy to read Railfuture's GDPR statement on how we treat your data.

25.08.2020

This site does not use its own cookies, although Google Analytics does. The site is maintained for Railfuture by Billing Specialists Ltd.