Home > News & Events > News Items > All Aboard For Ashford

All Aboard For Ashford

The first of the ‘bullet’ high-speed trains set to slash journey times to London in half have arrived in Ashford.

The distinctive dark blue streamlined trains are part of a 29 strong £260m fleet which will be maintained and stored at Hitachi’s maintenance depot in Ashford.

The new generation of high-speed trains can reach speeds of up to 140mph and will begin operation in December 2009.

A further 25 will arrive in 2009 in time for the start of the new services in December of that year.

Alistair Dormer, general manager at Hitachi Rail Systems London, said the company had reached a "major milestone" by delivering the train on time and on budget.

“Hitachi is delighted the first trains have been delivered to Ashford following the significant investment to establish our state of the art maintenance depot which reinforces the town’s proud railway heritage dating back over a hundred years.”

Southeastern Managing Director Charles Horton said its arrival was great news.

"When these trains enter service in December 2009 they will slash journey times across the region, encourage more people to travel by train and bring new standards of comfort and reliability," he said.

For more information visit the High Speed 1 website.

Media Release 0302/07