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22 October: news in brief

Former Thameslink trains set to carry London Gateway freight

FORMER Thameslink trains are set to carry freight in May, when a new scheme to bring merchandise into central London is due to begin. The proposal is to use former Class 319s with their seats removed and diesel engines added, to provide local freight services between the port of London Gateway and London Liverpool Street station. The scheme has been prompted by the new charges for lorries entering the London Ultra-Low Emissions Zone, and Rail Operations Group is working with London Gateway owner DP World to develop the scheme. ROG says ‘the longer-term aspiration is to have a UK-wide network of logistics operations serving both logistics centres as well as major stations.’ A new train operating company named Orion is being set up to run the services.

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