Troubled South Western Railway (SWR) has re-introduced refurbished trains on long-distance routes with more spacious seating and Axminster carpets.
Four 10-car Class 442s have been running on the London to Portsmouth and London to Poole routes since the new year.
The trains have more spacious ‘2+2’ seating within refurbished interiors that include Axminster carpets, at-seat power for mobile devices and real-time passenger information displays.
A first class interior with leather seats
Although SWR runs trains to Exeter via Axminster, in Devon, this route will not currently benefit from the new trains. The firm still runs trains on some routes with less generous 2+3 seating, where seats on one side of the aisle are grouped in threes.
Interiors on the new trains also include LED lighting, with Wi-Fi throughout and universal accessible toilets and seating facilities for disabled passengers. First Class customers get new leather seats and tables.
Neil Drury, engineering director for SWR, said: ‘We’ve already had positive feedback about the extra space provided with the 2+2 seating configuration and other benefits.
‘Passengers will also notice the high quality of the refurbished interiors, including Axminster carpets and reupholstered seats.’
‘We’re proud of the fact the works have been undertaken at Eastleigh and Bournemouth depots. This has meant investment in local facilities across the South Western network, helping to boost the economy and secures jobs for people living in the communities we serve.'
He added: '‘We will look to introduce all of the Class 442s in the fleet back in to service as soon as possible.’
Earlier this week the final refurbished Desiro train entered passenger on the SWR network. However, the delivery of a fleet of brand new Aventra trains has been delayed.
Last week SWR warned that it could be stripped of its franchise after forecasting losses of up to £146m during the remainder of its contract.