Life After Thameslink
|The Southern Electric Group by convention does not cover operations and alterations to former Southern Electric units after they have left the Southern Electric system. It is, however, considered within the group's remit to record their departure and introduction to service elsewhere.|
With the arrival of Bombardier Class 387 units - interim stock pending arrival of Siemens Class 700 units - Thameslink Class 319 units are starting to be re-deployed elsewhere. Northern Rail are eventually to get thirty for new "Northern Electric" services. 319361, 319362, 319363, 319364, 319365 and 319380 were the first to depart, by June 2014. It is the intention that all re-deployed units will receive an element of internal refurbishment and new livery (minus branding) at Wolverton, with further attention, such as to seats, at Allerton Depot, where branding is also applied.
319362 and 319363 were the first to enter service with Northern on Thursday 5th March on two Liverpool Lime Street to Manchester Airport diagrams.
(above) 319363 arrives at Manchester Airport with the 14:16 working from Liverpool Lime Street on 9th March 2015
All photographs on this page are by "GB" who travelled between Manchester Airport and Liverpool Lime Street on 319363 on 9th March and comments - not much has been done to the units other than external painting, internal redecoration, fitting new seat covers and removal of conductor rail pick-ups. Note that most seat covers are patterned, but a few are plain. There are still two small lavatories – so no "accessible" lavatory fitted. This fits in with the DfT expecting any major refit to be dealt with by the new franchisee. PIS is fitted and the electronic announcements are female with a northern accent. Both visual and audible announcements refer to the train as a “Northern Electrics service”, a title that appears so far not to have been extended to existing Class 323 services. There are no mirrors or CCTV monitors at any stations and no sign of them being installed, so unit was operated with a driver and a conductor.
The units working via the newly-electrified Liverpool – Manchester line are on diagrams timed at 75mph for "Sprinters", but the train was obviously running faster than that, once clear of Manchester. Therefore, no surprise that there were signal checks approaching Newton-le-Willows and extended stops, awaiting time, at St Helens Junction and Wavertree Technology Park.
(above) the interior of the DTSO of 319363