NMT- New Measurement Train

The Network Rail New Measurement Train (NMT) was launched in 2003 and assesses the condition of track so that engineers can determine where work is required. It was assembled from High Speed Train Class 43 power cars and Mark 3 coaches and can check the condition of all main lines in Great Britain in a fortnight.

Due to its all-over yellow livery, it has been nicknamed "Top Banana". It has three power cars available for use, nos 43013, 43014 and 43062, the first two being ex-DVT's from the original IC225 Mk3 coach testing phase and these are fitted with buffing gear and couplers. Although they were originally equipped with the Paxman Valenta engines they have all now been re-engined with MTU power units.

One of the jobs we were called upon to undertake was some brake testing on the New Measurement Train not long after it was first assembled.

This HST set was originally made up of Mk3 and Mk2 coaches and was expected to run at up to 125 mile/h. As the Mk2 coaches with B4 bogies weren't designed for this speed, their braking needed adjustment and the Testing Section were called in to assess the NMT's braking performance.

Unfortunately it was not adequate for high speed, despite a number of attempts to improve it, and therefore the NMT was limited to 110 mile/h for the first years of its life.

Following the introduction of further Mk3 coaches the restriction was lifted.

The set is owned by Network Rail but operated by DB Schenker 

 Click on the picture for a bigger image - photos are the author's unless otherwise indicated


The NMT is seen here just to the south of Duffield station. Note that the second and fifth coaches are Mk2 vehicles.

D Bower

Wingfield The NMT is seen here in its later formation, which consisted of all Mk3 stock, near Wingfield Tunnel on 11th May 2006


Passing Broadholme on 11th May 2006 Carlisle At Carlisle on 3rd July 2007


43062 at Carlisle on 3rd July 2007

Derby 3rd August 2013


975984 messing/generator car at Carlisle on 3rd July 2007. This was originally part of the prototype HST, then it was converted into the R&DD Lab Coach 15 'Argus' and later became the DM&EE's Test Car 4. It survived being cut up in 2003 and ended up in the NMT. An eventful life and it's not finished yet.


977993 pantograph car at Carlisle on 3rd July 2007 977994 977994 track recording car at Carlisle on 3rd July 2007
977995 977995 reserve generator vehicle at Carlisle on 3rd July 2007
977xxx 977814 at Carlisle on 3rd July 2007. This was originally part of the prototype HST, then it was converted into the DM&EE's Test Car 10 and is now the high speed track recording coach in the NMT


43014 ex-DVT at Carlisle on 3rd July 2007 Elford Passing Elford between Derby and Birmingham on 8th May 2009


At the Old Dalby test track on 30th July 2010 seen passing the site of the former Widmerpool station

Back to Serco index

Back to main index