The refurbishment element of the deal is worth £127m. The work includes the installation of more comfortable seats, improvements to the onboard shop, interiors, toilets, and Wi-Fi, and the installation of better lighting and at-seat chargers. Alstom says it will improve the performance of the Pendolino trains through the introduction of new maintenance programmes.

The Pendolino trains, which are owned by Angel Trains, operate at a maximum speed of 200km/h on services linking London Euston with Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool, Glasgow and Edinburgh.

Maintenance deal

The seven-year maintenance contract, which will run until 2026, is valued at £515m and includes the maintenance of the 10 seven-car EMUs and 13 five-car bi-mode electro-diesel trains which Avanti West Coast recently ordered from Hitachi Rail. Both fleets have a maximum speed of 200km/h.

Avanti West Coast is 70:30 joint venture of First Group, Britain, and Trenitalia, Italy. It won the West Coast Partnership franchise in August 2019, taking over from Virgin Trains which had held the franchise since the privatisation of British Rail.