March 26 - The first five of 110 high-speed railcar units have been delivered to the UK port of Southampton from Kasado, Japan onboard Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics' ro-ro vessel Tamerlane.

Having been unloaded from the vessel, Allelys Heavy Haulage handled the road transport of the trains from Southampton docks to the Old Dalby test track near Melton Mowbray.

The first set of Intercity Express Programme (IEP) trains are destined for use on the Great Western and East Coast main lines over the next three years. The remaining 112 trains for the Department for Transport's IEP programme will be built at a new Hitachi plant in Newton Aycliffe in northeast UK.

Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics (WWL) ceo Christopher Conor explained that WWL has been charged with delivering the remaining series of railcars over the next three years, both from Kasado and Newton Aycliffe.

"These trains will transform rail travel for passengers travelling between many of the great towns and cities of England, Scotland and Wales; provide a massive jobs boost for Britain and deliver billions of pounds of benefits for our economy," said UK rail minister Claire Perry.