Spencer Group to Upgrade First Great Western’s Flagship Reading Depot

Multidisciplinary Engineering Company, Spencer Group has been awarded the extension and upgrade to First Great Western’s flagship Train Care Depot in Reading.

Part of the Department for Transport’s Intercity Express Programme, Spencer will begin detail design works immediately and the newly upgraded depot will be operational by June 2016, ready to accommodate the new fleet of trains bound for the Great Western Main Line.

Spencer will extend the existing train shed to create space for the new wheel lathe facility (WLF), P-Way will be extended to allow trains to access the WLF and the depot’s carriage wash will be re-located into a temporary location to allow the works to be completed. Office / training rooms and welfare accommodation will also be built within the extension for the depot staff.

The depot location is on the boundary of the Reading Music Festival and keeping the facility fully operational throughout the duration of the contract, Spencer’s work on-site will be challenging.

Spencer Proposals Director, Simon Bethell, said: “Potentially, there are challenges that may come our way, but we have great experience in depot works and live working environments. Currently we are upgrading Ferme Park Train Depot in London, which is a similar working depot environment. We are delighted to have been chosen to deliver this project on behalf of First Great Western. It continues a long line of previous successful depot works delivered by Spencer in the England and Scotland: Airdrie Bathgate, Neville Hill, Heaton, Hornsey, Bounds Green, Eastleigh, Craigentinny, Cricklewood, Etches Park and New Cross Gate Train Care Depot to name a few.”

The appointment of Spencer to upgrade First Great Western’s Reading Depot comes off of the back of another recent successful engagement to upgrade 8No train care depots on the east coast mainline on behalf of Hitachi Europe, where works are now progressing through design, to on site delivery.