I had a pleasant surprise on my commute home last night when I found myself on one of the new ten car trains that southwest trains have bought. They’ve coupled two brand new cars onto the front of their existing stock, so we could all see it was a new train as it approached the platform. Being able to get a seat was also a new experience.
Now, in transport modelling terms, that means that they have potentially increased their people carrying capacity by 25%. If they were running 8 car trains before and can now run 10 car trains, that’s a significant increase.
What I don’t know is how many of these trains they’ve got and when and where they’re running them. I’ve looked at the Network Rail data feed, but it doesn’t give you the size of the train. I need to look into the data a bit more deeply as there might be a physical train identifier that I’ve missed. They all have “leading car id”, but I can’t find this in the data feed. Even a map of all the stations that have been converted to take 10 cars would be interesting.