Bigger Better Trains Arrive On The District Line

But Richmond and Ealing branches will have to wait

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A new generation of ‘s-class’ trains are now being rolled out on District Line services.

The S-class trains are longer than the carriages they're replacing and passengers can walk the whole length of the train, so it is easier to get to the least crowded parts, and this also improves passenger safety and security, according to Transport for London. The new trains provide an 18 per cent increase in capacity.

Thus far, the trains are only operating on the Wimbledon and Edgeware Road branches of the District line. We contacted Transport for London to ask when they will be introduced on the Richmond and Ealing branches of the line but we have yet to receive a reply.

Similar S-Stock trains were introduced on the on the Circle and Hammersmith and City lines last September. The District Line's existing trains are more than 40 years old. They started service in 1969/70 and were manufactured in two batches in 1969, with a further supply in 1977.

By the end of 2016 there will be 191 of the new trains on 40% of the Tube network running on the Circle, District, Hammersmith & City and Metropolitan lines.

The new trains are built by Bombardier in Derby and are all air-conditioned and have lower floors to ease accessibility for disabled people and parents with buggies. CCTV also enables the driver to see into every carriage while track-to-train video links give the driver a better view of the outside of the train before leaving a station.

Every axle of the train is motored, maximising acceleration rates and also improving braking capability. The S Stock uses the tripcock train protection system traditionally used by London Underground, however an upgrade will install new signalling system by 2018. This will enable automatic train protection and operation.

Total seating capacity per the seven-car train is 256 with another 24 tip-up seat and four wheelchair spaces (or an additional 14 tip-up seats). Total standing capacity per seven-car train 609, making a total of 865 per train.

February 14, 2014