When Isambard Kingdom Brunel built the Great Western Railway, his actions shaped the towns and cities lining the route; with businesses and communities thriving thanks to the connections made by trains.
And now, 175 years after the first train ran between Bristol and London, we’re carrying out the biggest upgrade in a generation on the GWR network. We’ll continue to shape and support the region into the 21st century and beyond.
Our brand new Electrostar trains started operating between London Paddington and Hayes & Harlington in September 2016.
They provide free Wi-Fi, at-seat power sockets, air-conditioning, improved toilets, plenty of space for wheelchair users and, most importantly, more capacity; each providing over 400 seats - a 16% increase in peak time capacity into Paddington.
From January 2017, we increased services to half hourly in each direction between Paddington and Hayes & Harlington.
By the middle of 2017, as electrification of the Great Western Main Line progresses, services will operate as far as Maidenhead.
Eventually, 45 trains will replace most of the existing diesel trains we currently operate in the Thames Valley.
The Intercity Express
The first trains will come into service this year, with more joining by the end of 2018.
Services to Bristol, South Wales and the Cotswolds will benefit first, with the second batch mainly serving the West of England route; these will also have modifications to improve power over the steeply graded West Country routes.
Our culinary jewel is the luxurious Pullman; with dishes such as Brixham scallops on spiced lentils, Somerset pork belly with fennel and quince, and goats cheese from Glastonbury; all prepared and served at high speed.
Night Riviera sleeper
Luxurious cabins with state-of-the-art foldaway furniture, Wi-Fi, USB chargers and power points will ensure the trip from Paddington to Penzance is as relaxing as possible; and increased luggage space will be able to accommodate more bikes and surfboards for those hoping to catch some waves.
Keep an eye out for introduction dates.