A new milestone will soon be reached in the phased introduction of the new Class 777 trains on the Merseyrail network, as the first stage on the Kirkby line has now been completed.
The full 15-minute service throughout is due to be reinstated from Monday 6 March. This means all trains on the Kirkby line from this date would be Class 777s. Sunday services will continue, as usually to operate every 30-minutes.
The focus will now shift on to the Ormskirk line, which will be the next part of the Merseyrail network to receive the new trains.
Since the introduction of the Class 777s on the Kirkby line in January, passengers have been fulsome in their praise of the new trains. Many have been hugely impressed with the improved design, layout and high-tech features such as air conditioning, wifi and electric charging points.
Kirkby will also be getting another huge leap in infrastructure when a new station at Headbolt Lane opens later this year, which will be served by battery powered class 777 trains and among the first services in the UK to use the technology.
Suzanne Grant, Commercial Director at Merseyrail, said:
“The completion of the Kirkby line Class 777 roll out is a really significant moment.
“As the first part of the network to go through the phased introduction, the Kirkby line has been the stage where the new trains have come into contact with passengers for the first time. Only so much can be learned from a test environment, so the performance of the new fleet in passenger service has been a crucial moment.
“We have been delighted by our customers response to the trains and are looking forward to the next stages of the roll out.
“We will now be moving the project for introduction over to the Ormskirk line. As with the Kirkby roll out, this will require a reduction in a small number of services. We apologise to passengers who may be affected by these changes and will aim to return to a full schedule as soon as possible.”