The arrival of the first of 5 new trains for Island Line has been delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic, it has been confirmed.
In September last year, it was announced that the Isle of Wight will be receiving Class 484 Vivarail trains to operate on the Ryde Pier Head to Shanklin network. The 1978 former London District Line stock – which are completely overhauled by Vivarail in the Midlands – will replace the ageing 1938 former underground trains.
The new trains will provide more capacity, better accessibility, USB charging, passenger information systems and onboard wifi. They will also allow the guard to easily pass between carriages to collect fares.
It was originally said that the first carriages would arrive on the Island for testing in ‘early Summer 2020’, but that target date has now been delayed until September.
A spokesperson has told Island Echo:
“Unfortunately, the current Coronavirus situation has resulted in delays in the supply chain, and with social distancing measures at the manufacturing site, we now expect these trains to arrive on the Isle of Wight in September.”
A total of 5x 2-car trains have been ordered with each train able to accommodate up to around 188 people – a mix of 106 people standing and 86 seated. During peak times, a total of 4 carriages can be run as a single train giving a capacity of around 376 people.
Proposed Island Line Upgrade Programme (as of September 2019)
|September 2019||Island Line investment announcement made at Brading|
|Late 2019-2020||Build of new Vivarail Class 484 trains begins at Long Marston, Midlands|
|Late 2019 onwards||Design and planning work for Island Line infrastructure|
|April 2020||Testing begins on first Class 484 Island Line unit|
|Spring 2020||Wifi and Ticket Machines installed at stations (not yet completed)|
|Summer 2020||First Class 484 train arrives on the Isle of Wight for testing (now delayed until September)|
|October/November 2020||More new Class 484 carriages arrive on the Isle of Wight (expected to be delayed)|
|Winter 2020/2021||Disruption during infrastructure works – shuttle service in operation|
|February 2021||Final new Class 484 carriages delivered|
|March 2021||Last 1938 stock Island Line train decommissioned|
|May 2021||Brand new timetable introduced with new trains|