UK Transport Wiki

Franchise(s):East Midlands
11 November 20071 April 2015
Main Region(s):East Midlands, Yorkshire and the Humber, East of England
Other Region(s):London, North West, East Anglia
Fleet size:25 Class 43 HST power cars
17 Class 153 Super Sprinter sets
11 Class 156 Super Sprinter sets
27 Class 158 Express Sprinter sets
23 Class 222 Meridian sets
Stations called at:87
National Rail abbreviation:EM
Parent company:Stagecoach Group

East Midlands Trains (EMT) was a train operating company operating in the United Kingdom, providing train services in the East Midlands and surrounding areas, chiefly in the counties of South Yorkshire, Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire, Derbyshire, Northamptonshire and Lincolnshire. Their franchise, which began 11 November 2007, was formed through the amalgamation of the former Midland Mainline, who operated inter-city services from London to Yorkshire and the Humber, and the eastern side of Central Trains.

Legally known as Stagecoach Midland Rail Limited, the parent company of EMT is Stagecoach Group which also owns 49% of the Virgin Trains franchise. Its sister company was South West Trains. [1]



Scarborough will remain on the Mainline network with direct weekend trains to the Midlands and London.

Previous to the launch of the franchise the Department For Transport undertook the task of splitting up the former routes of Central Trains, East Midlands Trains resulted from the letting of the East Midlands Franchise.[2]

East Midlands Trains began operation on the East Midlands Franchise from 11 November 2007. [3] EMT has taken over all of the routes formerly operated by National Express Group's Midland Mainline and a few routes from Central Trains.


East Midlands Trains have divided their services between two sub-brands: Mainline InterCity services, and Connect urban and suburban services which have mainly come from the Central Trains franchise. EMT also have four broad routes for the areas that they operate in, except from the high speed and InterCity services which are all out of London.

East Midlands Mainline[]

Route 1[]

An East Midlands Trains Class 222 meridian at Derby, which will benefit from extra London and Nottingham services.

Route Calling At
Express London St Pancras to Sheffield Leicester, Derby, Chesterfield
Express London St PancrasNottingham Market Harborough, Leicester, Loughborough, East Midlands Parkway
Express London St PancrasLincoln (proposed limited service) Luton Airport Parkway, Bedford, Wellingborough, Kettering, Market Harborough, Leicester, Loughborough, East Midlands Parkway, Beeston, Nottingham, Newark Castle
Express London St PancrasSkegness (proposed summer saturday service) Luton Airport Parkway, Bedford, Wellingborough, Kettering, Market Harborough, Leicester, Loughborough, East Midlands Parkway, Beeston, Nottingham, Boston
Express London St PancrasCorby (proposed) Luton, Bedford, Wellingborough, Kettering
Express London St PancrasDerby Leicester, Loughborough, East Midlands Parkway Long Eaton
Express London St Pancras - Leeds (limited service) Leicester, Derby, Nottingham, Langley Mill, Alfreton, Chesterfield, Sheffield, Wakefield Westgate
Express London St Pancras - York/Scarborough (limited winter/summer weekend service) Leicester, Loughborough, East Midlands Parkway, Long Eaton, Derby, Chesterfield, Sheffield, Doncaster

Route 1 is the InterCity route on the Midland Main Line.

Service pattern currently is of four off peak departures from London. Two fast (one to Sheffield and one to Nottingham), and two stopping (one to Derby and one to Nottingham). Sheffield peak hour trains extend from and to Leeds with weekend services also extending to York and Scarborough.

EMT from December 2008 propose the above service pattern (that shown in the box). Five off peak departures from London three fast (one to Sheffield, one to Nottingham and one to Derby) and two stopping (one to Nottingham and one to Corby/Kettering). Sheffield peak hour trains will continue to extend from and too Leeds with weekend services also extending to York and Scarborough. In addition a Nottingham service will be extended to start from Lincoln and a summer saturday service will be introduced to Skegness.

EMT has expressed a desire to run two trains an hour from Sheffield to London on its flagship route. The possibility of running trains north of Corby is under review for implementation in 2010.

East Midlands Connect[]

Route 2[]


South West Trains 158890, on loan to East Midlands Trains, at Lincoln Central on the 22nd December 2007

Route Via
Express/Stopping Liverpool to Norwich/Cambridge Manchester Piccadilly, Sheffield & Peterborough

Route 2 services cross England from east to west and are the former Central Citylink services. EMT trains see this as a mainline route (and want to grow it accordingly), and as such will paint relevant trains in the mainline livery.

This route is subject to much speculation, as the trains only operate at up to 90 mph but use a busy part of the ECML through Grantham. It has been suggested that this train will in future operate via Leicester.Template:Verify source

Route 3[]

Route Via
Local stopping Nottingham to Derby/Worksop Hucknall, Mansfield
Local stopping Derby to Crewe Uttoxeter, Longton, Stoke-on-Trent
Local stopping Derby to Matlock Belper, Cromford
Local stopping Leicester to Lincoln Central Loughborough, Nottingham, Newark Castle

Route 3 services link towns in the East Midlands and provide direct services to Crewe and Stoke. The Derby to Matlock service links to the Peak District.

Route 4[]

File:EMT 153374 Lincoln.jpg

A Class 153 Super Sprinter train in East Midlands Trains livery

Route Via
Local stopping Newark North Gate to Grimsby Town Lincoln Central, Barnetby
Local stopping Peterborough to Doncaster Sleaford, Lincoln Central
Local stopping Nottingham to Skegness Bingham, Sleaford
Local stopping Leicester to Lincoln Central East Midlands Parkway, Nottingham, Newark

Route 4 services link the East Midlands with eastern England.

New routes[]

  Fifth train an hour from London, operating to Kettering (stopping service, which will be extended to a new station at Corby depending on the funding).[citation needed] EMT have not ruled out plans of a northbound service from the station from 2010.[4]
  Lincoln CentralLondon St Pancras (via Nottingham, one departure out at 07:10 and returning at 18:30. It is unknown whether this will run in the path of existing services between Lincoln and Nottingham, or whether it will be in addition). [5]
  Summer Saturday service from London to Skegness. [6]
  Better integration between Mainline and Connect services with increased punctuality and becoming more user friendly.[7]

Proposed timetables indicate a reduction in off-peak departures at many smaller stations on Mainline and Connect routes which has caused much concern in affected communities. Kettering for example will receive half its current northbound services from 2008. [8]


File:2000 St Pancras 3.jpg

St Pancras International, is now one of the best connected stations in the country

Fares are set to rise by an average of 3.4% plus inflation each year. Stagecoach says that it needs to increase prices to keep its service going and to meet Government profit demands. 3.4% plus inflation over the franchise could mean a 58% fare increase over the length of the franchise, although the percentage increases relate to averages across a range of fares and deals. [9]

Stagecoach Group, EMT's parent company, will from 2008 sell seats on some off-peak services under the Megatrain brand Mondays to Saturdays. This uses a similar low cost model to their Megabus service. Megatrain tickets are generally available on services that are expected to be quiet and empty. The tickets available will generally be between St Pancras and other principal stations and ticket holders are assigned to a specific carriage (normally the second from the front on South West Trains) in the train. The Megatrain service is also operated on fellow Stagecoach Group–owned South West Trains, and previously on Virgin Trains (49% owned by Stagecoach Group) in some regions until these ceased with the transfer of services to CrossCountry, owned by Arriva.


Services are split into two distinct groups, East Midlands Mainline and East Midlands Connect, the former relating to express services (formerly Midland Mainline) the latter to more regional connecting services (formerly Central Trains). The Department for Transport in their franchise specification gave an indication as to the planned timetable; this mainly related to former Midland Mainline services operating to and from London St Pancras.

  St Pancras – Sheffield (stopping only at the key locations of Chesterfield, Derby and Leicester with faster timings of 2hr 08min).
  St Pancras – Kettering. This train would run as a dedicated commuter/short distance service and in the future extend to Corby station.
  St Pancras – Derby (semi-fast service).
  St Pancras – Nottingham (fast)
  St Pancras – Lincoln (stopping service, extended from Nottingham at peak times).
  The current morning and evening services from and to Leeds are expected to continue as the HST fleet will continue to be maintained at Neville Hill depot in Leeds.
  Weekend services to York and Scarborough will continue beyond the December 2008 timetable change.
  Services to and from Barnsley and Burton upon Trent and will cease to operate from the December 2008 timetable.
  There has been no mention of the proposed timetable in Lincolnshire and the other rural lines although it is expected that service patterns will remain as now until the 2008 timetable change when there will be extensive consultation sessions. Standard hourly timetables are expected to be introduced on many routes.


Stagecoach have pledged to spend more than £91 million on service improvements.[10]

Train services[]

File:Sheffield Station from Sheaf Square.jpg

Sheffield will be served by much faster modern trains and the station will have ticket barriers installed

On its mainline services Stagecoach have pledged to add faster trains from Nottingham to London St Pancras [11]. The journey times saving on London to Sheffield services of 12 minutes by introducing Meridians on all off-peak Sheffield services. Earlier arrival time of the first train into London St Pancras, before 05:00 to allow business travellers to reach the rest of the continent before 09:00 via the new Eurostar services. Later departures from St Pancras as far as Leicester after midnight to connect with last Eurostar service from mainland Europe. Five off-peak departures from St Pancras per hour incorporating future Corby services. Additional early morning train from Derby to St Pancras International in London. Reduction of off-peak northbound services from Kettering and Wellingborough. London to Lincoln daily service via Nottingham. Summer Saturday service from London to Skegness on the east coast. Plus internal and external refit of all trains to include provision of Wi-Fi Internet. Catering facilities to be reviewed; it is proposed that High Speed Trains will lose their buffet cars. Other changes to the timetable are planned, but these need to have approval from Network Rail, Office of Rail Regulation and the Department for Transport. Journey times will be further improved after planned infrastructure works are completed. [12]

On East Midlands Trains Connect services Matlock to Derby services will run an hourly and will be extended to Nottingham. Lengthening of trains on the west to east Liverpool Lime Street to Norwich route on weekdays.[10] Internal and external refit of all of the old trains to incorporate the new logo and livery.[citation needed]

In several interviews, East Midlands Trains managing director Tim Shoveller has indicated that services will be speeded up, not denying that some stations will lose their current high frequency of trains off peak.



Leicester will receive an enhanced service with earlier and later trains so that business travellers can connect with the continent

More than £5 million has been pledged into station enhancements for most of the stations under the EMT's control.Cite error: Closing </ref> missing for <ref> tag The upgrade of many station concourses to meet better standards. The provision of Wi-Fi Internet at key stations including Sheffield. Installation of ticket barriers at four more stations including London St Pancras Domestic, Derby Midland, Nottingham and Sheffield. As well as the extensive upgrade of Etches Park Depot train maintenance depot in Derby. Introduction of smart card technology, similar to that which is used on South West Trains, at all mainline stations and all those in the Derby/Nottingham commuter area. Introduction of Megatrain fares from 2 January 2008, which is the same formula used by Stagecoach on Virgin Trains and South West Trains, plus InterCity bus services as Megabus. Self service ticket machines at more stations operated by EMT.

Passengers who use Loughborough and Long Eaton Stations have begun lobbying East Midlands Trains regarding the short platforms at these stations, which are shorter than the trains using them. This can be particularly problematic for passengers with bicycles or heavy luggage.

On board[]

Midland Mainline's policy of free tea and coffee for standard-class passengers stopped after the timetable changed on 9 December, with East Midlands Trains claiming Midland Mainline would have stopped the policy anyway should their franchise have been renewed.[citation needed] Season ticket holders are no longer able to reserve seats on the former Midland Mainline routes. All buffet cars will be removed from High Speed Train sets, and will be replaced by at-seat trolley services; this is because of the large weight of a buffet coach, which is used only in the morning to cook breakfasts. A range of hot food will be available for first-class passengers once the above changes have taken place, but not for passengers in standard class. The company is currently reviewing its decision and options.

Liverpool to Norwich regional services will retain a similar catering provision of an at-seat trolley service.



Lincoln Central currently subject to major Network Rail infrastructure work will be served directly into St Pancras International.

Stagecoach plan to achieve a 90.3% (PPM) on Mainline services and 87% (PPM) on Connect services. [13] Previously the Central Trains franchise had had difficulties with timekeeping due to the high number of potential clashes with late running other services en route. Figures released rated Central Trains' performance at 87.8% for the PPM (Public Performance Measure) over the first quarter of the financial year 2007/8. [14] Initial figures released by the ORR rated performance overall at 86.2% (PPM) for the second half of the third quarter of the financial year 2007/8. [15] This is approximately 5% lower than figures for Midland Mainline services previously, but includes the more tricky Connect services.


Barrow On Soar[]

On Friday 1st February 2008, an East Midlands Connect Class 158 service working from Nottingham to Norwich (via Loughborough and Oakham) was involved in an incident at Barrow-on-Soar. The train hit a footbridge that was in its path, after a road vehicle had stuck and damaged the bridge causing it to be foul of the line. Six passengers were on board the service and the driver had to be cut free from the driving cab.[16]

Rolling stock[]

East Midlands Trains inherited Midland Mainline’s InterCity 125 (HST) and Class 222 Meridian diesel-electric high-speed trains, along with some of the Sprinter diesel units (classes 153/156/158) formerly operated by Central Trains. Some moves of 158s occurred between the various franchises owned by Stagecoach.

East Midlands Trains have revealed that the Class 222 Meridian trains will be used on the off-peak London to Sheffield services. This will allow the London to Sheffield run times to be reduced by the 12 minutes promised. The HST trains will then be used on all Nottingham fast services.[citation needed]

The former Central Trains class 158 units are expected to be upgraded to the same standard as South West Trains class 159 units. Template:Verify source

East Midlands Trains announced in March 2008 that it was to reform its Class 222 sets to prevent overcrowding. This will see the remaining 4-car Class 222 units receive an extra vehicle to become 5-car sets. This will be accomplished by reducing one of the 8-car sets to a 5-car, with the remaining long units reduced to 7-cars. Extra capacity on its long distance routes will be provided by running pairs of 5-car sets coupled together.[17] East Midlands Trains will also cascade one of its HST sets to First Great Western by the end of 2008.

Fleet at end of franchise[]

Class Image Type Top speed Number Routes operated Built
mph km/h
Class 43 High Speed Train 100px diesel-electric locomotive 125 200 28 London St Pancras - Leicester - Nottingham/Leeds/Sheffield/Skegness 1976 – 1982
Class 153 Super Sprinter 100px diesel multiple unit 75 120 17 East Midlands Connect 1987 – 1988
Class 156 Super Sprinter 100px diesel multiple unit 75 120 11 East Midlands Connect 1987 – 1989
Class 158 Express Sprinter 100px diesel multiple unit 90 145 27 Norwich - Nottingham - Liverpool 1989 – 1992
Class 222/0 Meridian 222017 EMT livery.jpg diesel-electric multiple unit 125 200 23 London St Pancras - Leicester - Nottingham/Derby/Lincoln Central/Sheffield 2003
Mk.3 Coach 100px Passenger Rolling stock 125 200 108 London St Pancras - Leicester - Nottingham/Leeds/Sheffield/Skegness 1975 - 1988


  1. The Stagecoach Group. East Midlands Trains (April 23rd 2008).
  2. Media briefing: Central Trains remapping. Department For Transport (January 30th 2003).
  3. Corporate Information. East Midlands Trains (April 23rd 2008).
  4. Rail service could run north of town. Northants Evening Telegraph (February 21 2008).
  5. ‘Direct Train Link’ Pledge. Lincolnshire Echo (June 23 2007).
  6. Direct rail link to London by May 2009 - Skegness Today
  7. More services and extra capacity for the Midlands. Department for Transport (22 June 2007).
  8. Train campaign is backed by 1,200. Northants Evening Telegraph (05 December 2007).
  9. 'Highway Robbery - Train fares set to go up. Lincolnshire Echo (July 3rd 2007).
  10. 10.0 10.1 Plans for the future of the East Midlands franchise. Stagecoach Group (23 June 2007). Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "Future" defined multiple times with different content
  11. Template:Cite news
  12. Template:Cite news
  13. Template:Cite news East Midlands Trains
  14. National Rail Trends Office of Rail Regulation
  15. National Rail Trends Office of Rail Regulation
  16. Train Driver Critically Injured After Lorry Smashes Into Bridge |Sky News|UK News
  17. East Midlands Trains Class 222 reformations The Railway Centre, 18/03/08

See also[]

External links[]


Preceded by
Central Trains
Central franchise
Operator of East Midlands franchise
2007 - present
Preceded by
Midland Mainline
Midland Main Line franchise