British Rail Class 456

British Rail Class 456

EMU Less

British Rail Class 456

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The British Rail Class 456 electric multiple-unit trains were built by BREL at York Works from 1990-91.


24 two-car units were built as direct replacements for the elderly Class 416 2EPB units which operated on the Central Division of the Southern Region of British Rail. Units were delivered into traffic painted in Network SouthEast blue, red and white livery. Units were numbered in the range 456001-024. Each unit consisted of two carriages; a driving motor and a driving trailer. The technical description of the unit formation is DMSO+DTSO. Individual carriage numbers were as follows:

  • 64735-64758 - DMSO
  • 78250-78273 - DTSO

When first introduced, the units suffered from many technical and reliability problems, which delayed the replacement of the 2EPB units. However, once they settled down the units were used on many services, including London Bridge to London Victoria via Crystal Palace, and London Victoria to Horsham. Before the lines closed in 1997 to allow the building of Tramlink, Class 456 units worked services on the West Croydon to Wimbledon Line. Recently, more Class 456 EMU trains have recently been allocated to Victoria - Epsom via Sutton and West Croydon, especially at peak times, as well as services from Epsom Downs and Dorking.

Current operations

Since the privatisation of Britain's railways, the entire Class 456 fleet passed into the Southern...
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