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03 Feb 2020

Talgo trains: Inclusivity is in the DNA

With more people travelling by rail than ever, it becomes increasingly essential to ensure that accessibility – and ‘self-mobility’ continues to improve. There should be ‘Rail for all’, and in an inclusive society, the traumatic days of compulsory booking assistance must soon be gone.

With few exceptions, trains still being built for the UK market continue to play ‘catch up’ with norms experienced in other parts of the world. Though conversions and upgrades to existing rolling stock are a welcome initiative, there’s still much more to do. The next generation of trains must have inclusivity in their ‘DNA’ – and not as an afterthought.

Dominic Lund-Conlon, accessibility expert at the Rail Delivery Group, and one of the most influential people with a disability in the UK, works with rail companies, local authorities and disabled customers to improve accessibility on the railway. He supports train companies to introduce improvements and helps to influence key elements of national and local government policy to make the railway more accessible to more people.

Dominic has today (30 January) visited Talgo’s operation in Spain, to see how providing for disability can be built into every part of every train.
Talgo provides a true ‘turn up and go’ solution. Unlike every high-speed train delivered (or on order) for the UK, every Talgo train doorway is level with the platform, there is no need for complicated ramps, and – unless the traveller wants one - there’s no need to worry about there being a member of staff on hand, either.

This approach is engineered into Talgo trains from conception, meaning that genuine step-free access and personal mobility is available throughout.
There’s also more space to move around inside. Because each vehicle is shorter than contemporary UK vehicles, there is less overhang on curves, meaning that trains can be wider.

President of Talgo, Carlos de Palacio, Said:

 ‘Talgo prides itself in innovation and finding practical, long-term solutions. We recognised the need for level access many years ago, and built it into our trains.
It was a pleasure to welcome Dominic today. Talgo believes in people experiencing its products, so that they can see how our solutions can be tailored to their own environment. Our trains speak for themselves in terms of accessibility.

As the UK moves towards a new era of fast rail travel, it seems inconceivable that the UK will continue to provide trains with problematic access.
Talgo promises to be different, and we look forward to building  such trains at a new facility in Scotland ’

Note to editors

Talgo is a leading specialized rolling stock engineering company mainly focused on designing, manufacturing and servicing technologically differentiated, fast, lightweight trains with presence in 44 countries.

Talgo is renowned worldwide for its innovation, its unique technology, and reliability.

Talgo UK has been established with a head office in Chesterfield, England - complementing plans for a manufacturing site at Longannet in Scotland.
Unlike some competitors, instead of relying on kits of parts from overseas, Talgo UK aims to build British trains, with British workers, revitalising parts of the UK supply-chain.

A key part of Talgo UK’s strategy is ‘knowledge transfer’ – building UK domestic capacity for Research and Development.  An innovation hub is also planned in Chesterfield. It will act as a focal point for Talgo UK’s Research and Development, bringing together networks of engineering excellence, and creating new opportunities throughout the British Isles.

More information:
Please contact John Morris at JetSetJohnnie   
07800 679050   
jetsetjohnnie@gmail.com