UK Transport Wiki

Franchise(s):West Midlands
11 November 200710 December 2017
Main region(s):West Midlands, London
Other region(s):West of England, East Midlands
Fleet size:157 (soon to be 191) [1]
Stations called at:146 [2]
National Rail abbreviation:LM
Parent company:Govia (Go-Ahead Group / Keolis)
File:London Midland Rail Network Sagredo.svg

A map of the London Midland Network

File:London Midland Express.svg

London Midland Express route map

File:London Midland City.svg

London Midland City route map

London Midland was the name of a train operating company in the United Kingdom. Legally named London and Birmingham Railway Ltd. [3], it was a subsidiary of Govia, and operated the West Midlands Franchise from 11 November 2007 until 10 December 2017.

Their services operated primarily on the West Coast Main Line from London Euston and in the West Midlands region, replacing previous operators Central Trains and Silverlink (both subsidiaries of the National Express Group). Services were then taken over by West Midlands Trains on 10 December 2017.


London Midland's services were divided between two sub-brands[4], London Midland Express and London Midland City.

London Midland Express[]

This sub-brand was used primarily for semi-fast services on the West Coast Main Line (WCML).

The first route is a former Central Citylink service. The second route is the former Silverlink County route (although latterly the services between Northampton and Birmingham have been run jointly with Central Trains. The third service is a new semi-fast service, which will replace current Virgin Trains services from December 2008. This will coincide with the number of Virgin Trains services calling at stations on the Trent Valley Line (and other parts of the WCML) being reduced. The fourth route is an extension of the third route (once a day).

The brand will also be used for two former Silverlink County services on branches off the WCML, namely the Marston Vale Line (from Bletchley to Bedford) and the St Albans Branch Line (from Watford Junction to St Albans Abbey). It is a requirement of the franchise that Transport for London's Oyster Cards can be used on trains between London and Watford Junction. In the past, TfL have expressed interest in taking over the St Albans branch, and installing Oyster Card readers on the stations along it[5]; however this route was included with London Midland's franchise.

London Midland City[]

This sub-brand was used for local and commuter services around the Birmingham / Coventry Area, sponsored by Centro/ Network West Midlands, that were previously run by Central Trains. These services were:

Smaller stations[]

London Midland operated several "limited stop" stations, where only a handful of trains a day stop:

These include [6]:

  • Hartlebury; six trains a day Monday-Saturday, peak only, no Sunday service.
  • Bordesley, one train per day Monday-Friday (a parliamentary train), football specials on Saturday, no Sunday service.


The first performance figures for London Midland to be released by the ORR for the second half of the third quarter of the financial year 2007/8 are 85.4% PPM.[7]

Rolling stock[]

File:Jewellry Quarter railway station platform - Birmingham - 2005-10-14.jpg

London Midland plan to replace the region’s older trains, including the Class 150 units that operate the Snow Hill and Bedford-Bletchley lines

File:Tivedshambo 2006-03-12 Parry People Mover.jpg

Parry People Mover of the type to be used on the Stourbridge Branch Line

Fleet at end of franchise[]

London Midland’s fleet was composed of rolling stock inherited from Silverlink and Central Trains. They planned to improve the reliability and interior design the existing Class 153 and Class 170 trains, and install passenger information systems and CCTV on the majority of the fleet. They also intend to use automatic load-monitoring systems to measure how heavily their services are used, for the purpose of alleviating over-crowding.

As of 12 November 2007 there were already several units operating in the new livery and re-furbished green interior, but all of the Class 170 "Turbostar" units on the Wolverhampton to Shrewsbury line and the Class 150 "Sprinter" units still carried their original liveries. The 150s in fact, do not have any branding any more. When Govia took over, they were more intent with removing "Central Trains" from units, than applying their name.

Class Image Type Cars per set Top speed Number Routes operated Built
mph km/h
Class 150/0 Sprinter File:HPIM1405.JPG diesel multiple unit 3 75 120 2 Snow Hill Lines 1984
Class 150/1 Sprinter 150121 at Kidderminster.JPG diesel multiple unit 2/3 75 120 14 3 car
10 2 car
Snow Hill Lines
Bedford - Bletchley
Class 150/2 Sprinter File:150245 at Cambridge.JPG diesel multiple unit 2 75 120 2 Snow Hill Lines 1985-1987
Class 153 Super Sprinter HPIM0808.JPG diesel multiple unit 1 75 120 10 Stourbridge Branch Line
Strengthening of any diesel services
Coventry - Nuneaton
1987 - 1988
Class 170 Turbostar File:Central Trains 170513 at Crewe 01.jpg diesel multiple unit 2/3 100 160 17 2 car
6 3 car
Hereford - Birmingham
Birmingham - Shrewsbury
Birmingham to Stafford via Walsall
1999 – 2002
Class 321/4 File:321409 HarrowWealdstone.jpg electric multiple unit 4 100 160 37 Birmingham - Northampton
Birmingham International - Walsall
London - Milton Keynes
1989 – 1990
Class 323 File:London Midland Class 323.jpg electric multiple unit 3 90 145 26 Lichfield - Redditch (The Cross City Line)
Walsall - Birmingham
Wolverhampton - Birmingham
Class 350/1 Desiro Tivedshambo 2007-11-16 London Midland 350.jpg electric multiple unit 4 100 160 30 Liverpool - Birmingham
Northampton - Birmingham
London - Birmingham/Crewe
2004 - 2005

Future fleet[]

As part of its franchise agreement, London Midland is committed to a major programme of new rolling stock. In its initial plan, it announced that it would bring into service an additional 37 Class 350 units from Siemens which it plans to use in replacing its Class 321s. After beginning its operations, London Midland announced two further orders, with fifteen 3-car and twelve 2-car Class 172 Turbostar units ordered from Bombardier Transportation, together with a pair of Class 139 railcars from Parry People Movers for use on the Stourbridge line.[8][9] When the two Class 139's enter service on the Stourbridge town line, the current Class 153 will be moved to the Bedford - Bletchley line. These will replace Class 150s on this route; the remainder of London Midland's Class 150s will be replaced like for like by the Class 172s. Under the government's rolling stock plan, the Class 150s will be cascaded to other TOC's.

Class Type Cars per set Number Introduced Notes
Class 139 railcar
diesel multiple unit
1 2 2008 Will replace the existing Class 153 DMU on the Stourbridge Town line by the end of 2008[10]
Class 172/2 Turbostar diesel multiple unit 2 12 2010 Will replace the existing Class 150[11]
Class 172/3 Turbostar diesel multiple unit 3 15 2010 Will replace the existing Class 150[12]
Class 323 Electric multiple unit 3 17 2014 Cascaded from Northern to complement the existing 323's to create a uniform fleet and to help the Cross-City service become a complete 6-car service
Class 350/2 Desiro electric multiple unit 4 37 2008 Will replace Class 321

See also[]



  1. See fleet table
  2. London Midland Website Accessed 12 September 2007
  3. WebCHeck - Select and Access Company Information
  4. London Midland Plans: Sub-brands 25 October 2007
  5. - London Rail Authority
  6. London Midland's route map and timetables
  7. ORR statistics
  8. Template:Citeweb
  9. Template:Citeweb
  10. Template:Citeweb
  11. Template:Citeweb
  12. Template:Citeweb

External links[]

Preceded by
Central Trains
Central franchise
Operator of West Midlands franchise
2007 - 2017
Succeeded by
West Midlands Trains
Preceded by
North London Railways franchise