Pupils take fast Javelin to Ashford train centre to get engineering know-how

Pupils from Bethnal Green Academy visiting Ashford rail engineering maintenance centre

Pupils from Bethnal Green Academy visiting Ashford rail engineering maintenance centre - Credit: BG Academy

Pupils from Bethnal Green Academy were on the right track visiting the Ashford Train Maintenance centre in Kent to see first-hand the work the Hitachi Rail Europe company is doing to maintain the High Speed Class 395 ‘Javelin’ trains.

The visit on June 18 was part of an Engineering Development Trust’s programme which pioneers innovative ways of getting youngsters involved with careers in science, engineering and technology from the beginning of their school years.,

“It good to see the next generation of engineers,” Hitachi Rail Europe Garry Davis said. “They were asking insightful questions about the maintenance provision and service of the Class 395 ‘Javelin’ fleet.

“We are supporting the training of new engineers and work with school leavers, apprentices and graduates to find the right career path for them.”

The Bethnal Green students travelled from Stratford International to Ashford International on the Class 395 ‘Javelin’ service, experiencing the iconic HS1.


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They arrived at Ashford eager to learn about the day-to-day working of the maintenance depot.

Year 9’s Anisa Uddin, who is currently preparing a project examining the environmental benefits of train travel, said after the visit: “I’m interested in exploring the option of working as an engineer. I really enjoyed speaking to Alex Ward about his experiences starting at the centre as a graduate engineer.”

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“The Engineering Development Trust scheme is aimed at inspiring the next generation of employees by giving youngsters a real work experience of what it might be like. The students are supported by mentors and get valuable insights into what opportunities are available to them through site visits like the Ashford train centre.

In addition to exploring the skills opportunities for aspiring engineers,

The Bethnal Green pupils were also given a guided tour of the Ashford depot and even boarded the Class 395 itself.

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