The Anonymous Widower

All Change As First Class Ditched By New Intercity Rail Service

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on The Times.

These are the first two paragraphs.

Rail bosses signalled the end of the first-class carriage today with plans for a new all-standard intercity train service between London and Edinburgh.

The new budget service will operate on the east coast mainline from October 25, with one-way fares starting from £14.90. In all, 60 per cent of single tickets will be below £30.

I find it interesting that The Times is making the lack of First Class, the most important point in the story.

In Thoughts On Seating In East Coast Trains’ New Class 803 trains, I looked at what the seats could be like and decided they could be generous with lots of tables given the number of seats and the size of the train.

The Times article confirms my analysis.

Having travelled to Liverpool a couple of years ago in Standard Class with two senior guys from Legal and General, I suspect that many business travellers who want to read and chat could turn to East Coast Trains from the airlines.

The article does give some previously-unknown information.

The Service Will Be Called Lumo

The name is unusual, but it is short, memorable and was available and is now up and under development as the East Coast Trains web site.

Lumo has also been used for an energy provider, which has now been merged into OVO Energy and is also a video game.

The Service Starts On October 25th

The times are still as I said in Thoughts On Seating In East Coast Trains’ New Class 803 trains, with London and Edinburgh services as follows.

King’s Cross and Edinburgh

  • 05:45 – Arrives 10:10 – 4 hours 25 minutes – Stops at Stevenage
  • 10:45 – Arrives 15:17 – 4 hours 32 minutes
  • 12:18 – Arrives 16:41 – 4 hours 23 minutes – Stops at Stevenage
  • 14:36 – Arrives 19:15 – 4 hours 39 minutes
  • 20:18 – Arrives 00:46 – 4 hours 28 minutes

Edinburgh and King’s Cross

  • 06:14 – Arrives 10:51 – 4 hours 37 minutes
  • 09:11 – Arrives 13:48 – 4 hours 37 minutes
  • 11:14 – Arrives 15:46 – 4 hours 32 minutes
  • 16:12 – Arrives 20:47 – 4 hours 35 minutes – Stops at Stevenage
  • 19:58 – Arrives 01:05 – 5 hours 7 minutes – Stops at Stevenage


  1. Times appear to be in-line with those of LNER.
  2. East Coast Trains’ objective of arriving by 10:00 is not met.
  3. Paths exist for East Coast Trains from the 7th June.

I got these times from Real Time Trains.

The Lumo Web Site

I have also tried to book a ticket on their web site.

They accept Railcards and I was able to get a one-way ticket for £13.30. But as the site doesn’t appear to be complete, I didn’t buy the ticket.

But if you can go between London and Edinburgh for £13.30, that is certainly good value.

The First Group Press Release

This Press Release from First Group gives more details and was the source of The Times article.

September 7, 2021 - Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , ,


  1. The following link shows the seating plan for these trains. Not many tables with most airline seating. Two toilets in a five coach train??
    Would I use the service – not sure but I imagine that with these trains appealing to the budget market and coach passengers upgrading from National Express etc it will do well. Maybe it will free up the LNER services and make life more enjoyable on their trains.
    Not sure that we should be handing these valuable paths to 5 coach trainsets on a line where capacity is so valuable though.

    Comment by fammorris | September 9, 2021 | Reply

    • I used to commute into London on Capital Connect. They refurbished some of their 317 to have 2 +2 instead of 2+3. Everybody was pleased. My calculations led me to believe that Lumo were doing 2+3 seats, but this is better. I should be able to get more from that seating diagram.


      As to fully using paths, I think we’ll see a lot of that in the next few years with GWR and LNER, as it will enable services to make the maximum of the paths.

      Staff at Leeds have told me, that they will split there and I suspect they could run something else with the Lincoln service to maximise that path. Leeds, Newark and Peterborough are good places to split as the two trains can go off on separate routes from the station.

      If Lumo is a success, they will buy more trains and run pairs. Now that Hitachi make the body shells at Newton Aycliffe, I suspect that this has reduced the produce lead time, as shipping shells from Japan takes time.

      Comment by AnonW | September 9, 2021 | Reply

      • Good to see Hitachi almost on its own initiative bootstrapping the British manufacturing industry.
        If Newton Aycliffe has machine-controlled welding equipment and body jigs as part of its production line for the AT300 it will still only be able to build its own bodyshells from sets of ‘flat-pack’ panels manufactured at Kasado.
        My impression was that some bodyshells had been produced at Pistoia in Italy
        It’s not actually clear from press releases whether Newton Aycliffe will be using the friction stir-welding (FSW) process used in manufacturing the Japanese bodyshells, since the only reference I can find is to MIG welding in Co Durham. My impression was that some bodyshells for recent Class 8XX contracts had been produced at Pistoia in Italy who I think are still using the MIG Welding technique.

        Comment by fammorris | September 9, 2021

  2. They’re certainly building body shells in Newton Aycliffe.

    I also think Hitachi and Nissan talk to each other. Hyperdrive Innovation, who are producing battery packs for Hitachi, also do a lot of work for Nissan.

    Comment by AnonW | September 9, 2021 | Reply

    • There’s no doubt Hitachi and Nissan have a comm

      Comment by fammorris | September 9, 2021 | Reply

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