Enhancing the power supply on the ECML to enable faster, quieter and cleaner trains for passengers.
Network Rail is committed to delivering an enhanced power supply on the East Coast Mainline (ECML), supporting the Thameslink and Intercity Express Programmes and the introduction of new faster, quieter and cleaner trains on the route.
To facilitate these improvements, we've launched the East Coast Mainline power supply upgrade project – a four-year scheme to enhance the power supply/overhead line equipment (OLE) on the ECML.
For passengers and taxpayers, this investment will bring the following benefits:
- A network able to support the rollout of the Intercity Express Programme’s new trains
- A network able to support the introduction of the new Thameslink trains, to operate on the southern section of the route
- Increased efficiency and reduced environmental impact across the East Coast Mainline
Where and when
The East Coast Mainline power supply upgrade project runs from Wood Green in London to Bawtry near Doncaster.
2014 - REAL Alliance formation.
Spring 2016 - Power supply upgrades completed to meet regulatory milestone and enable operation of new Thameslink trains.
Autumn 2017 - Commissioning of new system to enable introduction of new Intercity Express Programme trains.
Winter 2018/19 - Overall completion of the project.
The power to help modernise the route
Included within these enhancements are seven new substations, eleven replacements and five refurbishments, which will increase the amount of power supplied to the railway and help modernise the route. This will also reduce the amount of maintenance required for OLE and prepare the line for the new trains that will improve journey times and make services more comfortable, whilst addressing overcrowding issues and continuing to meet the ever growing demand for rail travel.
With works delivered by the Rail Electrification Alliance. The project will see the construction of feeder stations, supporting Overhead Line Equipment (OLE) structures and the installation of new supporting infrastructure on the East Coast Mainline between Wood Green in London and Bawtry near Doncaster.
Time-lapse footage of the installation of the new substation at Hitchin. Scheduled for commissioning in August 2017, Hitchin is one of the 23 substations making up the East Coast Main Line power supply upgrade project.
Preparations for the exciting Virgin ‘Azuma’ have moved closer to completion.
Find out the latest news on the power supply upgrade and the major milestone the project has reached to enable the introduction of the new trains from late December 2018.
The Rail Electrification Alliance
Responsibility for the delivery of the East Coast Mainline power supply upgrade project lies with the Rail Electrification (REAL) Alliance, which comprises the following:
- Network Rail
- Siemens - traction power design, supply, installation and SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition)
- J Murphy and Sons - civil works and structures, cable and cable routes
- VolkerRail - overhead line equipment works and signalling works
- TSP Projects Limited - professional consultancy and design support
- Jacobs - professional consultancy and design support
For further information about the East Coast Mainline power supply upgrade project, please contact Network Rail’s National Helpline on 03457 11 41 41.