First, Hitachi move ahead with East Coast open access First, Hitachi move ahead with East Coast open access

FirstGroup’s plans to run budget-priced open access services on the East Coast Main Line have taken a major step forward with the order of five new trains from Hitachi. The rolling stock deal, worth £100 million, involves train leasing company Beacon Rail. Fares averaging ‘less than £25’ are being promised on board the single-class trains, which will run five times a day each way from 2021 between London King’s Cross and Edinburgh, calling at Stevenage, Newcastle-upon-Tyne and Morpeth, with journey times of approximately four hours. One target market will be airline passengers between England and Scotland.

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