An Update from c2c

Dear stakeholder,

May’s update with news announced this week that our reliable fleet of Class 357 trains are set to undergo a makeover, refreshing and updating the trains while giving them the distinctive look and feel of our new Class 720 trains. This work is being carried out by our partners at Alstom, the UK’s leading supplier of new trains, and involves the repainting, repairing and general refresh of 74 trains. This work, which will support an additional 25 jobs at Alstom, will be carried out at their Ilford depot over the next two years.

Here’s a brief look at just some of the things the team and I have been up to over the last few weeks.

Extra 190 c2c services to run each week from June

First announced back in March, we have this week reminded customers that c2c is introducing a revised timetable on Sunday 2 June. The new timetable will see two new morning peak (Monday to Friday) services from Shoeburyness/Leigh-on-Sea to Fenchurch Street, and two additional off-peak services (Monday to Friday) running every hour in both directions from Fenchurch Street to Shoeburyness. The increase in the frequency of off-peak services – back to four trains per hour – will mean that many of our customers across the route will have access to an additional 190 services each week. Full timetable information is available from

‘Thurrock’s Next Top Boss’ initiative sees winning project brought to life

On Friday (10 May), I was personally delighted and very proud to join the unveiling of c2c’s first free period care product dispenser which has been installed at Grays station. Having sponsored Thurrock Council’s Youth Inspire Hub 2023 programme of ‘Thurrock’s Next Top Boss,’ c2c committed to bringing this winning project, developed by ‘Team c2Sanitary’ from Grays Convent, to life. Over the coming months, period care product dispensers, produced in partnership with our suppliers Here We Flo, will be installed at many more customer and colleague toilets across the c2c route. Read the full story here.

c2c’s award-winning 357 trains clock up 150 million miles

Speaking of our 357 ‘Electrostar’ fleet, these reliable trains have recently completed an incredible 150 million service miles on the c2c route – that’s an average of 2 million miles per unit and roughly equates to a trip from Earth to Mars! 357 trains were introduced to the c2c line in the early 2000s, replacing the ‘slam-door’ trains which had served the route with British Rail for many years beforehand. Each year c2c continues to achieve some of the best punctuality and reliability figures of any train operator in the country, and it is no coincidence that our fleet of 357 trains are behind these excellent results.

Supporting the shared values of Essex Wildlife Trust

Our Director of Safety, Sustainability and Compliance, Stuart Browning, recently recorded a special video with the Essex Wildlife Trust where he outlined both organisations’ shared views and values on important environmental matters. In the video (available here), Stuart reiterates c2c’s ongoing commitment to sustainability, while stating that c2c continues to provide one of the most environmentally sustainable transport systems in the UK.

c2c Ultra Marathon: one month to go

c2c’s first ever Ultra Marathon – in partnership with the Railway Children charity – takes place in just one month’s time on Saturday 15 June. Over 300 hardy souls have already registered to take part in this gruelling event which starts at Upminster station (50 miles) and Lansdowne Primary School, Tilbury (30 miles) before heading out east along the Thames estuary to the finish line at Southend Central station. To find out more about the work of Railway Children, or even register to take part, click here.

c2c in the community

New Mind station sign unveiled at Basildon

  • To mark this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week and to further demonstrate our ongoing partnership with Basildon Mind, c2c recently updated the signage on the platforms at Basildon station to incorporate the Mind logo. We hope that the presence of the logo will act as a reminder to customers and staff that help is always available to those who need it. Basildon Mind and the other Mind locations on our route offer a wider range of mental health services to both adults and children, and the c2c team is working hard to raise awareness of the support that this excellent charity offers. You can read the full story and watch our supporting and poignant video here.

Dealing with nuisance pigeons at Southend East

  • Those of you who have recently travelled through Southend East may have noticed that our resident pigeon deterrer, ‘Bella the Hawk,’ continues to be a regular and popular visitor to the station (though perhaps not with the pigeons!). Following a successful trial period, Bella, along with her handler John, will visit Southend East once a week for the next 12 months. Bella’s presence is already having the desired effect and helping to keep the nuisance pigeons (and mess) at bay.

Author: Councillor Gerry O'Sullivan

Gerry is a Ward Councillor for St. Andrews & Hornchurch Resident's Association Executive member.

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