Virgin Trains marks one year anniversary of its Sunderland service

14/12/16

Anniversary name plate

A name plate has been presented by Virgin Trains to mark the one year anniversary of its services from Sunderland to the capital along the east coast.

In December 2015, Virgin Trains’ power car 43274 was named the “Spirit of Sunderland” to mark the arrival of its inaugural daily service into London King’s Cross. Virgin Trains has now presented an identical replica commemorative plate to Sunderland City Council.

Last year, the local authority worked closely with Virgin Trains to launch and promote the service, including helping to create a special design for the power car, complete with city landmarks, iconic images and “Spirit of Sunderland” plates to reflect the passion and history of the city.

The commemorative plate was presented to Councillor Henry Trueman, Deputy Leader of Sunderland City Council, by on-board staff member Denise Blas, who worked on the first service and is a proud resident of the city.

Councillor Trueman said: “It’s really important for the biggest city between Leeds and Edinburgh to have a direct link to the capital. It’s really useful for businesses and leisure travellers, including shoppers, and great that they can go from Sunderland city centre direct into the centre of London with Virgin Trains.

“I am delighted to receive this plate on behalf of Sunderland City Council and to continue to work with Virgin Trains to help grow its service from the city.”

Denise Blas said: “I’m so proud to be from Sunderland and to have helped to launch the service last year. This included meeting Sunderland football players Lee Cattermole and Fabio Borini at the Stadium of Light – which was great as a big fan of the club and season ticket holder!

“I’ve really enjoyed working on this service and was really pleased to hand over this plate to the council on behalf of Virgin Trains.”

Nameplate

Virgin Trains operates the 05.40 departure from Sunderland on Mondays to Fridays, calling at Newcastle, Durham, Darlington, York and Peterborough. This is scheduled to arrive into London King’s Cross at 09.06. The return service departs at 20.00 and arrives into Sunderland at 23.20.

Virgin Trains’ General Manager Claire Ansley said: “We were delighted to recognise the support of the council by presenting it with this plate. We will continue to work with it and other organisations within the city as we look to grow our service ahead of the introduction of an additional return service from Sunderland to London, which we plan to introduce from 2020.”

Latest News

View all

Virgin Trains customers can now bid for last-minute First Class upgrades in global first

20/09/17

The partnership is a world first for rail passengers and will enable more people than ever to enjoy the perks of First Class.

Virgin Trains accelerates journeys with eight-minute London-Scotland film

02/08/17

Virgin Trains has released speeded-up footage showing the incredible sights viewed from the drivers’ cab on some of its most scenic routes.

Virgin Trains adds extra trains and increases availability of its lowest fares at weekends

16/05/17

Virgin Trains today announced that customers can take advantage of even more trains on its east coast route and that it is increasing the number of affordable fares available on these services.