Javelin set to alter the face of domestic train travel in Britain

June 23, 2009 / 2 Comments

Never has a domestic train reached 140mph in Britain. All that changed today when the latest (Japanese imported) bullet train took a test run. Dubbed the Javelin, this train clocked 143mph on a test roll from London to Kent and back as the journey began from platform 13 at St Pancras.

Javelin Bullet Train 1 Javelin set to alter the face of domestic train travel in Britain

Javelin - Britain's Bullet Train

In a regular routine the train would stop at Ebbsfleet -a journey of 17 minutes. For the test run though, it zipped straight to Ashford, covering 70 miles in 30 minutes and 40 seconds. The train promises to cut journey time from Ashford to Central London in half, covering it in 37 minutes.

The Class 395 train required the driver, Mick Harding, to take special training in Japan despite his 11 years prior experience. Even he was startled by the speeds at which the train traveled mentioning that this was double the speed any of the drivers on the local trains have ever come across, 90mph being the fastest. He experienced the relative difference in speed when he saw the train whistling past the M2 and M20 on the fast lane.

Javelin Bullet Train 2 Javelin set to alter the face of domestic train travel in Britain

Javelin - Britain's Bullet Train

The only criticism would be the hike in fares as the journey from Ashford to London Charing Cross would now cost 26.60, which is 4.40 more. However, we can ignore this rise given the time that would be saved on the local journeys.

[via Dailymail]


  • http://www.ebbsfleetinternational.co.uk Ebbsfleet International

    I have been waiting for this for two years, so was very happy when I herd they would start early!!! When have you ever herd of an early train?? The train from Ashford to St Pancras would only take 37 mins. I found out that there will be an internal train between Ebbsfleet and Ashford, the train that goes to Ashford would take over an hour by car or train , but only runs twice a day until December!
    all much improved. Where as journey by train and all services will be very much in demand, I can’t imagine a use for the car but to hire it at either end.

  • http://extratex.com/x/EbbsfleetStation/ Ebbsfleet Trains

    I always use the high speed service to get to work in the morning; I find it so much easier and it saves so much time so you don’t have to rush! Plus the car parks at Ebbsfleet are never full so you never have to hunt for a space!

    Emily