Javelin Train UK - High Speed 1
Image courtesy of Wikipedia
The link officially opened in November 2007, immediately opening up the possibility for trains to reach speeds between 143 and 186 miles per hour. On the UK HS1 route the trains are allowed to run at 143 miles per hour. Across the whole range of Javelin routes the speed varies depending on the type of track in place.The Wikipedia article on High Speed 1 is a valuable resource for more detail.
Along the High Speed 1 rail route there are four main stations - St Pancras, Stratford, Ebbsfleet, and Ashford. The website at highspeed1.co.uk gives more detail on these stations. The trains are operated by Southeastern Railways. Ongoing international services are operated by Eurostar, with the two operations combined giving travel times of 2 hours 15 minutes between London and Paris, and 1 hour 51 minutes between London and Brussels.
In the future the UK will see further introductions of high speed rail services when the proposed UK bullet trains hit the tracks as part of the Intercity Express Programme. The video below gives a a CGI taster of the trains which will be seen on the routes.
The Javelin Trains so successfully used to fire spectators across London during the Olympic Games are now used to operate the 67 miles long High Speed 1 rail link between London's St Pancras station and the Channel Tunnel in Kent. They're known as Class 395's on this routes, and have operated scheduled services since December 2009. From the UK side of the Channel Tunnel travellers have fast access to major European cities such as Paris and Brussels.
But it's not only high speed international rail travel that's benefitted since the first journey of the Class 395 Javelin train into London in December 2008. Rail users journeying between Kent and London have also enjoyed what's proved to be a popular and speedy service - the first trip from Ashford to St Pancras was completed in just 37 minutes. Click here for the latest Javelin timetables.