Siemens Thameslink deal to create up to 2,000 new jobs
- Published on Thursday, 27 June 2013 16:41
- Written by Scott Buckler
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin has confirmed today that Siemens Plc with Cross London Trains have been awarded a contract of around £1.6 billion to build 1,140 state-of-the-art carriages for use on the Thameslink rail line
Siemens expects the award of the rolling stock contract will create up to 2,000 jobs across the UK supply chain in component manufacturing, assembly, construction of new depots and subsequent maintenance.
The deal is part of a £6 billion infrastructure and rolling stock upgrade to radically increase capacity on one of Europe's busiest stretches of railway improving connectivity and reliability across the capital and the south east.
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said:
This contract is a boost for UK Plc, delivering jobs and injecting crucial investment into the rail industry.
It will also vastly improve train travel into the capital providing fast, frequent services carrying more passengers than ever before.
This is just one of many rolling stock orders in the pipeline which is both great news for other suppliers and the wider economy.
The deal is expected to see the first new train running on to the network by the start of 2016. The introduction of the full fleet by the end of 2018 will enable a 24-trains per hour service to operate through the capital at peak times. A new interchange at Farringdon will also give Thameslink passengers access to the future Crossrail line for east-west journeys across London.
The new generation of electric commuter carriages will release existing carriages for use elsewhere on the network, particularly as further routes are electrified, for example in the north west of England and the Thames Valley commuter lines.
Steve Scrimshaw, Managing Director UK, Siemens Rail Systems said:
The finalisation of the Thameslink contract reaffirms Siemens' commitment to ongoing development and continued innovation in the UK rail industry.
The introduction of the new Desiro City will offer a much improved passenger travel experience and a step change in capacity and reliability. It's a technologically advanced train that has been designed with UK travellers in mind, incorporating proven technology and using the expertise, skills and feedback of highly experienced UK operators, train crew, cleaners and maintenance staff at every stage of the process.
Importantly, the contract will support the creation of up to 2,000 jobs. This includes some 600 highly skilled roles involved in the manufacture of hi-tech electrical components to help secure sustainable rail industry skills, as well as broader supply industry benefits and jobs associated with the depot construction and ongoing train maintenance requirements in Crawley and Hornsey.
The jobs created by the rolling stock project are in addition to those created by the Thameslink infrastructure works which are currently underway, together known as the Thameslink programme.
At the peak of construction activity it is expected that around 3,000 people will be directly employed on the Thameslink programme infrastructure works with as many again employed in related jobs in the wider community.
David Statham, Managing Director for current franchisee First Capital Connect, said:
Through our work on the Thameslink programme we have already introduced new trains, new stations, the route's first 12-carriage trains and 29% more seats at our busiest times of the day.
These new trains will now further transform our passengers' experience on the Bedford to Brighton and Great Northern routes, connecting new communities north and south of London and providing many longer services.