Retired national test train heads to new home in Fife
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A Class 313 test train, which has been retired from service by Network Rail has arrived at its new home with Fife Heritage Railway in Leven. The train, which had been used to support testing and validation for projects on the railway and to support the deployment of digital signalling using the European Train Control System (ETCS), recently travelled north to Leven from Leicestershire on a convoy of specialist low loaders.
Earlier this year the Rail Heritage Designation Advisory Board gave the train special Heritage Status to protect it for future generations because its seats, which are the originals from when it was built, have remained in tact and are of historical interest.
A spokesman for Network Rail said: “We are pleased that the train, which has been a crucial part of our research, development, testing and validation process, is being given a new lease of life by Fife Heritage Railway. The work the charity does is so important in protecting items of unique or historical significance, and we couldn’t be happier that the test train falls into that category. Our thanks go to Fife Heritage Railway.”
Jim Rankin, a trustee at Fife Heritage Railway, said: “We are grateful to Network Rail for the transfer of this Class 313 test train, which will give us a wonderful opportunity to preserve a unique slice of railway infrastructure normally unseen by the public. We are delighted to be entrusted with the train, which has added something very special to our collection. The plan is to site the test train on a track parallel to the new Levenmouth Rail Link, currently under construction and due for completion in spring 2024.
"This will be within the Kirkland Yard secure compound, where it will be displayed for maximum effect to both visitors to Fife Heritage Railway and to passengers travelling on the new line in and out of Leven. The train will be maintained in its current bright yellow livery, so it will be a real eye catcher and sure to be a great attraction.”