Greater Anglia promises comfortable seats on new fleet of trains

The first train to be built by Stadler for Greater Anglia takes shape at its factory in Switzerland.

The first train to be built by Stadler for Greater Anglia takes shape at its factory in Switzerland. Picture: STADLER - Credit: Archant

As train operator Greater Anglia prepares to show off the first of its under-construction Intercity and rural trains under construction in Switzerland, the company has moved to assure passengers their new trains will be comfortable.

The seats for the Intercity and regional trains for Greater Anglia being built by Stadler. Picture:

The seats for the Intercity and regional trains for Greater Anglia being built by Stadler. Picture: GREATER ANGLIA - Credit: Archant

Some new trains introduced other companies over recent months have come under fire from passengers who have described their seats as being like “ironing boards.”

However Greater Anglia insists its new trains will have seats designed with comfort at the top of the agenda.

Andrew Schoenemann, of Schoenemann Design, has over 30 years’ experience designing trains and previously worked with Greater Anglia on the popular refurbishment of its Intercity trains a few years ago.

He said: “We were presented with a range of seats to look at and we were able to find the best seat to fit the environment for our new trains and for the passengers.”

The seats for the Bombardier Aventra suburban trains. Picture: GREATER ANGLIA

The seats for the Bombardier Aventra suburban trains. Picture: GREATER ANGLIA - Credit: Archant


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Greater Anglia has chosen the FISA ‘LEAN’ seat for the new Stadler trains – which will run on the main line and regional routes – and made adjustments to the shape of the base cushions, lumbar support and head rests to ensure maximum comfort.

For the Bombardier trains – running on commuter routes from Ipswich, Colchester, Clacton and Cambridge – it has opted for the Kiel seat, which features a unique ‘S’ shape to the seat back for better comfort, and also creates more leg room for the person sitting behind.

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Other features of the new seats include seat-back tables with special grooves to support portable devices, tablets and laptops and a plug and USB charging point at every seat.

The designs of the new seats were being shown off as Greater Anglia officials travelled to Switzerland to see the first of the new regional trains being tested by manufacturer Stadler.

The new Intercity Stadler train. Picture: GREATER ANGLIA

The new Intercity Stadler train. Picture: GREATER ANGLIA - Credit: Archant

The major fleet replacement programme will see every unit in Greater Anglia’s fleet replaced with new trains.

The £1.4 billion investment in 169 new trains – 1,043 carriages in total – will see every train fitted with free Wi-Fi, at-seat plug and USB points, air conditioning and passenger information screens.

Greater Anglia has said will run a full service on Saturday, when the RMT is due to stage another one-day strike among guards over their future role.

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