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Thursday 15 April 2010


Secretary of State Compliments Stourbridge Branch Service

Lord Andrew Adonis, the Secretary of State for Transport, made time available during a pre-election political visit to Stourbridge on 13th April to undertake a personal inspection of the new lightweight railcar service on the Stourbridge Town branch line, which operates under the London Midland rail franchise.  He also visited the maintenance depot.  Speaking to the local press afterwards he was full of praise for what had been achieved by the local engineers who had designed and built the railcars, JPM Parry & Associates Ltd of Cradley Heath.

Lord Adonis, who described the service at Stourbridge as “a brilliant tram-style service”, told reporters that the Parry People Movers railcars – which have been running since May 2009 – could offer new opportunities for the UK transport authorities and also had good export potential.

During the course of Lord Adonis’s visit, which included taking a return trip on the branch line on board one of the railcars, he was given evidence of the operation’s environmental, engineering and service achievements.

The Parry People Movers railcars:

  1. Consume less than one third of the fuel required by the former heavy railcars, giving similar reductions in carbon dioxide emissions.
  2. Provide Stourbridge Town’s best ever rail service – a 50 percent increase in frequency on weekdays and Saturdays with a regular ten minute interval service in each direction, where previously it ran at irregular intervals around four times per hour.
  3. Provide a journey time 2-3 times quicker than that possible by bus using local roads.
  4. Have reduced the cost of the branch line operation to less than half that incurred running conventional heavy rolling stock.
  5. Provide a clean, light rail style operating environment due to their low noise and imperceptible emissions.
  6. Provide better access for passengers in wheelchairs, with luggage and buggies by having a floor height level with the station platform.
  7. Over the most recent period covering January to April 2010, have equalled the highest performance elsewhere on the network, operating over 99.5 percent of scheduled services in intense shuttle operation.

Discussions with Lord Adonis also included the potential use of similar lightweight railcars in the broader field of railway expansion – introducing new rail services on lines not currently used to transport passengers.

The political manifestos currently being issued by all parties make much mention of high-speed rail, but also cover the less glamorous branch lines.  The Liberal Democrats, as well as small parties including the Greens and UKIP, say they would plan to re-open closed branch lines.  The Conservatives say that they would discourage any buildings being put on former railway routes so they would be available for re-opening.  The Labour party’s pronouncements only mention new high speed lines and improvements to the existing network with nothing to say about branch lines.  However, they will promote measures to assist manufacturers of low carbon products and these clearly include the new Stourbridge lightweight railcars.

John Parry, chairman of the company, said: “We are delighted that the Secretary of State has shown such interest in our lightweight railcars in their first full-service operation.  We hope that he and his opposite numbers in other parties will see how the combined economic and environmental benefits of this technology could bring about a new era for local rail services, bringing attractive transport links to many more communities and providing them with easy access to mainline trains so more people can move from road to rail transport.”

Notes to Editors:
Parry People Movers Ltd (PPML) was founded in 1991 to develop rail transport based on a new innovation: the flywheel energy store, which allows vehicles to run extremely efficiently and to recapture their braking energy for re-use when accelerating.  The company's shares are listed on the PLUS Market (Ticker code: PPM).

PPML's rail vehicles offer the quality of modern light rail transport without the need for electrical power supply, giving excellent environmental performance and energy efficiency at lower costs than conventional technology.  PPML technology can be used equally on railways and on urban tramways.  PPML's vehicles are fully compliant with accessibility regulations.  The technology used in PPML's vehicles is licensed to the Company by JPM Parry & Associates Limited, a West Midlands engineering firm specialising in overseas development, innovative transport and energy/environmental issues.

Since 2009 two Parry People Movers railcars have provided passenger services on the Stourbridge Town branch in the West Midlands, operated by sub-contractor Pre Metro Operations Ltd under the London Midland franchise.

Contact: Parry People Movers Limited, Overend Road, Cradley Heath, West Midlands, B64 7DD
Telephone: +44 (0)1384 569553 ,Fax: +44 (0)1384 637753
E-mail: info@parrypeoplemovers.com, Website: www.parrypeoplemovers.com


Page last updated: 13 May, 2010
Copyright © 20
12 Parry People Movers Ltd

Company no: 2652429 Registered in England
Registered office: Overend Road, Cradley Heath, West Midlands B64 7DD