Rail operator Grand Central Railway Company has leased coaches and locomotives for its operations in the north-west of England, set to begin this year.

It has leased 24 MK4 coaches configured in a six-car formation from Eversholt Rail, as well as five Class 90 locomotives from DB Cargo UK.

Alstom is refurbishing all the coaches in Widnes, UK. They will feature Grand Central livery and new interiors.

The procured units will operate as daily services between Blackpool North and London Euston.

Grand Central will make a total investment of £21m in trains to operate its new north-west route.

All these electric trains will feature first-class carriages, Wi-Fi, accessible toilets and baby changing facilities. They also meet disability and accessibility standards and have wheelchair and priority seating facilities.

These trains will primarily operate along the north-west to London Euston route. They will also operate on routes between Blackpool, Preston, Nuneaton, Milton Keynes and London during diversions.

DB Cargo UK will maintain the trains at Crewe Electric Maintenance Depot.

Grand Central fleet project manager Paul Batty said: “We are incredibly proud of the work that has been done to bring our new fleet of rolling stock to fruition, starting with our first locomotive ready to begin driver training in a couple of weeks’ time.

“It’s taken a lot of planning and a considerable team effort to get to this stage and it’s fantastic that our customers will soon be able to see our refurbished Grand Central trains in operation.”

It secured the approval to run trains from north-west to London in June 2018.