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Greater Anglia postpones introduction of 111 new trains

PUBLISHED: 14:07 11 December 2019 | UPDATED: 15:21 11 December 2019

One of Greater Anglia's new trains. Picture: Neil Didsbury

One of Greater Anglia's new trains. Picture: Neil Didsbury

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The chaotic roll-out of new trains in the region has taken a fresh twist, with the next wave of 111 vehicles postponed to "complete software development".

The first Bombardier electric trains, part of a £1.4bn investment by Greater Anglia, need "longer than expected".

The train company has invested the money in three types of trains, the Stadler electric trains, Stadler bi-mode trains which switch between diesel and electric, and Bombardier electric trains.

The Bombardier trains will run on the electrified parts of the Greater Anglia network running out of King's Lynn.

A Greater Anglia spokesperson said: "Our Bombardier trains are expected to enter passenger service in spring 2020. The manufacturer, Bombardier, needed longer than they expected to complete software development.

"They have assured us that production is being ramped up, with extra staff at their Derby factory so that our customers can benefit from these state-of-the-art trains as quickly as possible."

The company has had hundreds of trains cancelled or delayed this week, prompting an apology to passengers.

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Many of the areas rural routes have been plagued with issues, with more than 80 trains cancelled on Wednesday.

Passengers were dealt another blow when the company said it was "no longer economically viable" to provide some catering services as of January - including all of the catering on Sundays.

An investigation is also ongoing into one of the new trains being within one-quarter of a second of hitting a car at Thorpe End level crossing in November.

Company bosses have issued an 'extreme apology' to customers for ongoing signal problems.

An email sent out to staff outlined measures being put in place to tackle its ongoing string of problems.

It includes treating the wheels with citrus oil to remove any "contamination" on them.

Bombardier has been approached for comment.

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