Sunday 22 April 2012


Alstom used to be called GEC Alsthom. The French owned company closed its 150-year-old Birmingham plant at Washwood Heath, the former site of the Metro-Cammell train building yards in 2005. 

Workers had campaigned to keep the site open but eventually accepted redundancy offers. The closure of the Washwood Heath factory effectively ended train manufacture in Birmingham. Problems with train unreliability in the UK and safety approval issues prompted the company to restructure with substantial job losses for the West Midlands.

For those interested in Railway History take a look at the website dedicated to memories of Metro-Cammell train building.

The British Class 390 "Pendolino" electric multiple units are tilting trains built by Alstom utilising Fiat tilt systems. Fifty- three 9-car units were built for Virgin Trains from 2001 to 2004. These trains were the last to be built at Alstom's Washwood Heath plant, in Birmingham, before its closure in 2005. 

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