Equipment supplied by Sheffield-based rail depot specialists, Mechan, will be playing an integral role in the upkeep of a new fleet of trains serving travellers in the Midlands.
West Midlands Trains’ Bletchley depot in Milton Keynes is taking delivery of 21 Mechan lifting jacks, as part of a major refurbishment project due to complete in 2024.
The manufacturer’s 18-tonne flagship jacks will work as a set of 20 (with one spare) to lift five-car class 730 Aventra trains, which are being built by Alstom (formerly Bombardier) in Derby at the moment. The installation is part of extensive civil changes being made to Bletchley’s road four to accommodate the jacking requirements of the new vehicles.
Mechan is working closely with West Midlands Trains to deliver the jacks to its specification. This includes fitting rail wheels to the bases and supplying 21 jacking brackets. When construction work is complete, the firm will then add socket boxes at the depot and install the jacks’ cabling system in a central pit to reduce tripping hazards.
Lindsey Mills, Mechan’s sales director, said: “West Midlands Trains uses our jacks at other facilities and was aware of their flexibility, efficiency and reliability, hence the order for the refurbished Bletchley. We continue to enjoy an excellent relationship with the client and can’t wait to see the fully synchronised set in action when the new trains enter service.”
West Midlands Trains operates services under the West Midlands Railway and London Northwestern Railway brands, from London to Liverpool and across the West Midlands.