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West Anglia Great Northern

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Parent company  National Express
Main region(s)  East of England
Stations called at  55
Parent organization  National Express
National Rail abbreviation  WN
Founded  1997
Fleet size  145
West Anglia Great Northern httpsuploadwikimediaorgwikipediacommonsthu
Franchise(s)  West Anglia Great Northern: 5 January 1997 - 31 March 2004 Great Northern only: 1 April 2004 – 31 March 2006
Other region(s)  Greater London (north and north-east)

West Anglia Great Northern was a train operating company in England owned by National Express, that operated the West Anglia Great Northern franchise from January 1997 until March 2004 and the Great Northern franchise from April 2004 until March 2006.



Prism Rail was awarded the West Anglia Great Northern franchise and commenced operations on 5 January 1997.

West Anglia Great Northern made an open access application to extend services from Peterborough to Doncaster but this was rejected by the Office of Rail Regulation.

In July 2000 to, West Anglia Great Northern was included in the sale of Prism Rail to National Express.

In 2002 as part of a franchise reorganisation by the Strategic Rail Authority, it was announced that the franchise would be split with the West Anglia part merged into the Greater Anglia franchise. In December 2003, the Strategic Rail Authority awarded the Greater Anglia franchise to National Express, with the West Anglia services transferring to One on 1 April 2004. After being granted a two-year franchise extension, the Great Northern services were retained with the company now referring to itself as WAGN rather than West Anglia Great Northern.


West Anglia Great Northern operated all stops and limited stops West Anglia services out of London Liverpool Street to Chingford, Enfield Town, Hertford East, Stansted Airport, and Cambridge, and all stops and limited stops Great Northern services out of London King's Cross to Cambridge, King's Lynn and Peterborough.

Rolling stock

West Anglia Great Northern inherited a fleet of Class 313, Class 315, Class 317, Class 322 and Class 365s from British Rail.

Some Class 322s were loaned to First North Western from 1997 until 1999, before all five went to ScotRail in 2001. In 2004, sixteen Class 365s were transferred from South Eastern Trains.

The trains to receive an overhaul were twenty-four Class 317/2s, which were made more suitable for long distance use through repainting, the addition of carpet, installation of lower-density seats and an improved first class area. Dedicated bicycle and wheelchair spaces and improved lighting were also provided, with the exterior receiving a new white, grey, blue and red livery.

Suburban trains were also improved with the Class 313s gaining new seats with higher backs, wheelchair provision and minor improvements to fittings such as stanchions in the passenger areas. These emerged from refurbishment at Railcare, Wolverton in a plain white undercoat before a metallic purple livery was introduced in 2001.

A dedicated Class 317/7 fleet was created for the Stansted Express through the refurbishment of 9 Class 317 units during 1999/2000. These featured an improved passenger environment and new metallic blue livery Stansted Express livery.


West Anglia Great Northern's fleet was maintained at Hornsey and Ilford depots.


As part of a franchise reorganisation by the Strategic Rail Authority, the Great Northern services were merged into the Thameslink franchise. In December 2005, the Department for Transport awarded the Thameslink franchise to FirstGroup with the services operated by West Anglia Great Northern transferring to First Capital Connect on 1 April 2006.


West Anglia Great Northern Wikipedia

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