British train operating company First Great Western (FGW) has reached an agreement with Nomad Digital to deploy free WiFi on board its high-speed train fleet and sleeper services.

As part of its new, 23-month franchise, the on-board wireless solution will be provided on all 53 high-speed and Night Riviera trains.

Currently, the wireless solution is made available through the public provider The Cloud at several FGW stations.

FGW operates high-speed services between London Paddington, the Cotswolds, South Wales and the West Country.

First Great Western managing director Mark Hopwood said: "We have trialled WiFi on board our fleet of Class 180 trains, serving the north Cotswolds, and it has been very well received by customers.

"The public’s demand for WiFi connectivity on transport has grown rapidly."

"I am delighted that we are able to extend this free service, and within the next year all high speed and sleeper fleet customers will be able to read their emails, browse the web, or simply catch up with friends while on the move."

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By GlobalData

Work on installing the wireless solutions on all the high-speed trains will begin from May 2014 and run up to end of the year. Availability of WiFi on the two daily Night Riviera services will start from June 2014.

In the recent past, Nomad Digital said that demand for installation of WiFi and other wireless connected services on trains has risen across the globe.

Nomad Digital CEO Andrew Taylor said: "The public’s demand for WiFi connectivity on transport has grown rapidly, becoming a vital tool for working and staying connected while on the move."

Image: A First Great Western Class 180 DMU at Radley railway station in Oxfordshire. Photo: courtesy of William J. Grimes.