NEW state-of-the-art Class 707 Desiro City trains are set to run through Woking from June next year at a cost of £210 million.
The engines are being built by Siemens and purchased by Angel Trains who will in turn lease them to South West Trains or to whichever rail operator may be running the franchise after it expires on 4 February. This could be existing incumbent Stagecoach South West Ltd, the parent company of SWT, or FirstGroup’s First South Western Trains Ltd.
A total of 30 five-car units have been ordered by SWT in an attempt to ease overcrowding which, as any commuter will vouch, is a serious problem on its network. The units will run as pairs between Waterloo and Basingstoke via Woking, although most will run between Waterloo and Windsor and Eton Riverside, allowing existing rolling stock to be utilised elsewhere.
The new rolling stock is currently being tested by Siemens at their Wildrenrath facility near Dusseldorf in Germany.