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National lockdown delays Blue Pullman launch

A NATIONAL coronavirus lockdown running from November 5 to December 2 has forced Locomotive Services Limited to postpone the launch run of its ‘Blue Pullman’ HST.

With a livery harking back to the days of BR’s iconic Blue Pullman, the debut of the train was to have been on November 14, but has now been re-scheduled for December 12, departing from London St Pancras at around 09.00.

Prior to the deferment, the route had been amended because Manchester, its destination, was placed in Tier 3 as a result of increasing COVID-19 cases. At the time of writing, it is unknown whether the original or revised route will be used.

The refurbishment and repainting of the all first class HST has been carried out for Locomotive Services Limited by Arlington Fleet Services at Eastleigh, with the set breaking cover on October 30 when it returned to its Crewe base. There is some work to complete on the buffet and power cars and these will return to Eastleigh.

On November 2, LSL began driver training with a scratch HST set, running from Crewe to Carnforth, Carnforth to Rugby and then back to Crewe, and even with the delay to the launch, went ahead as planned.

The Railway Magazine also understands the inaugural run of LSL’s ‘InterCity’ brand train planned for November 21 will also be delayed.

This was to have used Mk3 stock in full InterCity livery, the ‘Royal Scot’ train being electrically hauled from London Euston to Glasgow will now run on December 12, with the first offering from this new brand expected to be on December 5 when the ‘Midland Scot’ runs from Birmingham International to Glasgow Central.

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• This news item updates the story on p82 of the November issue which went to press before the national lockdown was announced.

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