London North Eastern Railway (LNER)
London North Eastern Rail
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London North Eastern Railway (LNER)

Companies

London North Eastern Railway (LNER)

London North Eastern Railway (LNER)

Auto and Transport

Description

London North Eastern Railway (LNER) is a British train operating company. It is owned by DfT OLR Holdings for the Department for Transport (DfT). The company's name echoes that of the London and North Eastern Railway, one of the Big Four companies which operated between 1923 and 1948.

During June 2018, LNER took over the InterCity East Coast franchise, after the previous privately owned operator Virgin Trains East Coast (VTEC) returned it to the government following sustained financial difficulties. The DfT intended for the company to operate the franchise until a new public–private partnership could be established during 2020. However, in July 2019, it was announced that LNER had been given a direct-award to run these services beyond 28 June 2020, up until 25 June 2023, making it the longest franchise on the East Coast Main Line since Great North Eastern Railway (GNER). Early on, the integration of Great Northern services into LNER's operation after the expiration of the Thameslink, Southern and Great Northern franchise in 2021 was being actively considered as well.

LNER provides long-distance inter-city services on the East Coast Main Line from London; the principal destinations served are Leeds, York, Newcastle upon Tyne and Edinburgh. It directly manages 11 stations, while its trains call at 55 stations in total. LNER's initial rolling stock consisted of a fleet of InterCity 125 and InterCity 225 high speed trains that it had inherited from VTEC. During May 2019, the first batch of Class 800 bi-mode high speed multiple units, based on the Hitachi A-train platform, entered service, followed by the very similar Class 801 electric multiple units during September of that year. Branded by LNER as the Azuma, their introduction has permitted the InterCity 125 sets to be withdrawn from service entirely, along with most of the InterCity 225s. A limited number of InterCity 225 sets have been retained and continue to be regularly operated by LNER.

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