Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Hitachi continues to fight for the IEP

Whilst Tony Mercado (the new Stuart Baker?) and team are busy playing The Fat Controller with Pendolini what news of the IEP?

Clearly DfT Rail's sudden enthusiasm for Alstom's finest has nothing to do with the near universal view that the IEP is dead in the water. Although Captain Deltic's waggish suggestion that the acronym now stands for 'Intercity Eastcoast Pendolino' may yet be officially adopted by Marsham Street, allowing some small degree of face saving in the Minster House bunker.

No matter

With DfT washing its hands of the IEP, now known as the Super Express, it now falls to Hitachi to keep the embers of the doomed project glowing.

Over the last few days there has been a flurry of desperate stories appearing in regional media promising jam tomorrow to local economies should an order for the trains ever be placed.

This from the Daily Post today...

NORTH Wales is on the short list for the site of a manufacturing plant for a new generation of ‘super express’ trains.

About 1,000 jobs could be created if Japanese firm Hitachi finally decides to build carriages for the trains on Deeside...

A spokesperson for Hitachi Europe confirmed that up to 200 people could be involved in the construction of the new plant and Deeside was among sites under consideration.

Whilst this appeared on the BBC Wear website on Monday...

County Durham 'first choice' for super trains

About 1,000 jobs could be created in County Durham if Japanese firm Hitachi decides to build carriages for "super express" trains in the area.

The firm said Newton Aycliffe was the "first choice". Another site in North Wales has also been short-listed.

A spokesperson for Hitachi said up to 200 people would be involved in the construction of the new plant.

A further 800 would be employed in manufacturing the trains - which could begin in 2013.

Presumably Hitachi is working on the basis that if you repeat something often enough it might actually happen?

You can't blame them for trying.

UPDATE: This from
Kendo Nagasaki...

Hitachi have failed to explain a key change to their Red Castle project which aims to set up a UK manufacturing unit.

Emulating Chairman Mao's policy of a steel furnace in every village Hitachi will now have lots of factories.

Clearly this policy is simplified if the new locations can offer a pool of management with existing railway experience.

Priority sites include Iainland in Scotland and Adrian Shooter's country estate, which has the added advantage of a rail test track already in place (subject to re-gauging)...