Film - The Rebuilding of a Railway

part of archive:
GEC Traction Archive
GEC Traction Limited

Corporate film produced for British Rail Network SouthEast by Blackrod.

This film is a video report on the big renewal program in Kent and the manufacturing and testing of a new generation of trains, the Networker, class 465. Report filmed between January and July 1992.

The film is divided in chapters:

Chapter 1: Introducing the networker

This includes shots of 465001, 465002, an interview with Roland Hill (Senior Project Engineer Class 465), footage of Railway Technical Centre in Derby where Networker are tested (interview with Clive Eaglen), tests conducted on 465201.

Chapter 2: The European connection

There is footage taken in Washwood Heath in Birmingham (previously the factory of Metro-Cammell), which is part of GEC Alsthom, where they are manufacturing trains for Network SouthEast according the best European manufacturing technologies. Footage shows the assembling of Networker Class 465, testing and diagnostic.

Chapter 3: Building from basics

The suppliers of the different parts (aluminium, bogies and electrics) are mentioned. Footage is taken in the manufacturing shops of ABB Transportation (ABB formerly BREL, British Rail Engineering Limited), the finishing touches on the Networkers made at York (incorporating ventilation system), each unit is tested before being put into service (shot of 465003), footage taken in York works sheds.

Chapter 4: Kent Link in Lancashire

This includes footage of the water test for Networker motor. The waterproofing test was performed on 02/09/1991 by an electrical engineer at GEC Alsthom Traction in Preston, with a prototype of the traction motor to be fitted to the Birmingham built trains. There is also footage taken in Preston (Traction test facilities) of tests on the new traction systems.

Chapter 5: The final challenge

The final chapter focuses on the tests run of the trains made by the two manufacturers over a period of 5 months. The footage is taken on board of the tested trains fitted with testing equipment, where the performance of networker recorded and analysed. This includes an interview with John Nichols, British Rail test engineer)


18 mins 15 seconds video on 1 VHS cassette
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