Eurostar Depot

By Robert Rogers

There have been railways at Stratford since the 1830s and the latest arrival is the Eurostar. These Locomotives will soon be running from St Pancras through the International Station at Stratford, and then on through the Channel Tunnel to Europe.

At Temple Mills, Stratford, E.15, a new Maintenance Depot has been built for Eurostar . The Eurostar Locomotive is a Class 373, known as a Trans Manche Supertrain (TMST).

It uses three different power supplies, two on pantographs, one for the French system of 25kV AC system (Stone Faiveley) and one for the Belguim 3 kV DC system (Brecknell Willis), and a 3rd rail Pick-up for the 750 v DC Southern railway (England) system.

The max speed on the continent is 300km/h or 186 mph.

In the tunnel and through England it is 160km/h or 100mph.

 Once the new channel rail link is built, it will be able to travel at 270km/h or 168 mph through England.

`Le Shuttle` (Fright) will still continue to run at 160km/h.

The reason it currently runs slower is because of the narrowness of the British tracks, if two 373`s pass each other at full speed the resulting pressure wave could knock the windows out!

The Locomotive and carriages are a total 20 cars long, some 400 metres (1320) feet, and cost about £25M to produce. These full-length sets are referred to as `Three Capitals `, reflecting the Cites they serve London, Paris, Brussels, and one can be seen in the Photo.
There are also smaller 14 cars, plus two locomotives.

The cab has no side windows and only a small front window, the reason for this is it was found if a normal size window and side windows were used, it causes Hypnotic effect on the driver when travelling through the Tunnel.

The Eurostar is capably of operating under seven different signalling systems.

Like a standard TGV (Train a Grande Vitesse) it is a fixed train-set and the coaches share a common bogie, but unlike the TGV the two coaches in the centre do not share a common bogie so for safety reason if stuck in the tunnel it can be split in to two halves for removal.

The rolling stock was built by GEC-Alshom at their works at Washford Heath, Birmingham, England and Belfort in eastern France.

The Stratford International Station complex will cover 120 Acres. The French Maintenance Depot is at Le Landy.

There has been a Workshop/Depot at Stratford since 1839, although the main workshops were not built until 1848. 

It is believed Temple Mills was so named because of some Mills there in the 16th Century which was owned by a Knight Templar.


Eurostar Depot