How Do You Fancy Driving the New High Speed Trains?
High speed rail is set to continue as proposed – and preliminary work is set to begin in 2017. HS2 is a huge project that aims to connect the east midlands and eventually the north with London and the south of England. The project has been named high speed rail 2 because high speed rail already exists and connects London with the continent via the Eurostar service.
High speed rail lines have been expanding throughout EU countries over a number of years. The HS1 line connecting London to continental Europe cost over £5.8 billion to construct and can support speeds of up to 186 miles per hour. Most of the rail network lines across the country were built way back during the Victorian era and cannot support speeds of over 125 miles per hour.
Work on the first sector of the HS2 line will begin in 2017 – and the line will connect London Euston to Birmingham. In the second phase the lines would extend in two routes – one up to Manchester and one to Leeds via Sheffield. There are further phases proposed for the future – which will see HS2 lines being extended northwards to Newcastle from the Leeds route and to Glasgow and Edinburgh from the Manchester route.
As far as train driving goes, driving for the high speed rail is as good as it gets in the UK. Working with Eurostar means excellent salaries that are beyond any remuneration offered by any other rail companies in the UK, and the prestige of working for the most sophisticated rail technology available to us today.
However, getting a job as a train driver with high speed rail is very difficult. There are few vacancies and competition is high. Being the best paying company in the UK, Eurostar are choosy and very particular about how they recruit drivers. There is a minimum requirement of 5 years of experience driving high speed passenger trains in the UK. Because the route goes from London St. Pancras to the continent – drivers are required to live within a certain radius from London St. Pancras.
Driving jobs with High Speed Rail 2 are also likely to be the cream of the crop, offering the best pay and other advantages. Competition for HS2 driver jobs is also likely to be very high. HS2 will increase the volume of job availability, once the service extends as planned.
However, this will all happen in the relatively distant future. The HS2 plans are set to go through as planned, however, work on the first phase will only be 4 years from now, in 2017. The phase one route from London to Birmingham is expected to be completed in 2026 at the earliest which is thirteen years from now. The second phase of the project was announced last month and is expected to be completed nearly twenty years from now in 2032.