Train Sim World 4

Train Sim World 3 – Master The West Midlands!

Jump aboard Train Sim World’s very first route located in the West Midlands! Exploring the hustle and bustle of Britain’s Second City, and master the hard-working BR Class 323 with the upcoming Birmingham Cross-City Line: Lichfield - Bromsgrove & Redditch, coming to Train Sim World 3 on November the 15th in both Add-On and Starter pack format!
You will also be able to Pre-Order Birmingham Cross-City Line: Lichfield - Bromsgrove & Redditch on Steam from the 8th of November!
Crossing the City of Birmingham from the Neighbouring city of Lichfield in the North, all the way to both Bromsgrove and Redditch just south of the city, Cross-City couldn’t have had a more suitable name if it tried. It is a r oute steeped in history, and yet to get where it is today its evolution has been somewhat more gradual than similar inner city cotter lines across the UK. The line today is the sum of several parts, with its routes dating back as early as 1837.
Its total distance of 37-mile (60 km) was made up of sections from numerous railways building lines in and out of Birmingham before the turn of the last century, including the Grand Junction Railway, London and North Western Railway, Birmingham and Gloucester Railway, Midland Railway, and Birmingham West Suburban Railway. Considering its inner-city access and commuter potential incredibly it wasn’t until 1978 that these lines were consolidated to create one singular route.
In its current state, the route features 25 distinctly unique stations, and thanks to its history, variety of Railway companies involved in its construction, and evolving service types, the route has a huge variety of interesting architecture and points of interest for you to see. From Birmingham University station which isn’t due to open until December this year, to the mix of modern and historic features at Sutton Coldfield Station.
Of course, we can't talk about Birmingham Cross-City without talking about New Street Station, or Bournville.
Birmingham New Street station is the UK’s central hub for passenger services, with trains bound for the North, London, Wales, and the South West all heading through this bustling sub-surface 13 platform station. It's no wonder it's earned the title of the Uk ’s busiest station outside of London.
Bournville station has been a highlight of the route since Cadbury’s purpose-built factory was opened in 1879, with a works town being constructed to complement the factory and create better conditions for workers. The footfall expanded as years progressed, and today, thousands of tourists make the trip to Cadbury World hoping to get a little bite of chocolatey happiness.
Throughout its life, the Cross-City Line, and the individual sections that make it up, have been home to Steam, Diesel, and Electric traction. In the era of steam, one of the highlights of the route was the steepest sustained main-line railway incline in Great Britain. At a gradient of 1:37.7 for 2 miles, it is known by Railfans as the Lickey Incline. This famous stretch of the line had treats for all the senses, including sight and sound - as the line allowed the giants of steam to be pushed to their limits with heavy freight trains, unique whistle codes, and dedicated banking locomotives to assist with the arduous task of heading South West out of the city. Since the electrification of the line in the early 1990s, the more modern BR Class 323 EMU that serves the route makes light work of this steep incline.
Popular amongst Railfans, the BR Class 323 EMU’s home has always been inner-suburban lines such as the Cross-City Line, and similar suburban routes in and around Manchester. Built by Hunslet Transportation Projects and Holec in the early 1990s, a total of 43 units entered service in 1994. With the unique sound of its traction motors engaging, this busy unit's distinctive whine is easily identifiable as it stops and starts between its numerous destinations . More info, such as audio, will be covered in the Roadmap later this week!
Sporting West Midlands Railway’s current striking Orange and White livery, the 323 has been a staple part of the Cross-City Line for many years, and with each unit being individually named, it's nice and easy for Railfans to spot them and add them to their collections. However, the unit is nearing the end of its working life on the route, with plans to transfer the fleet to be housed alongside their Northern Rail counterparts in Manchester, and the Cross-City Line to receive the more modern BR Class 730 EMU as a replacement in 2023.
As a player this means you get to enjoy not only the very first West Midlands route for Train Sim World 3, but you will also experience a historic line that is going through various upgrades and modernisations, contrasted by a fan favourite classic unit in its twilight years.
Birmingham Cross-City Line: Lichfield - Bromsgrove & Redditch arrives for Train Sim World 3 on the 15th of November for Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Epic Games Store, and Steam!
And pre-order on Steam from the 8th of November.
Join the Railfan TV team on Twitch, YouTube, or Facebook. on the 10th of November to catch your first proper glimpse of Birmingham Cross-City Line, we will be confirming the time of this broadcast closer to the date.
Find out more about the Birmingham Cross-City Line: Lichfield - Bromsgrove & Redditch, Train Sim World 3, and more by following @trainsimworld on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Twitch, and TikTok.
Written by Chris Payne
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Train Sim World 4
Train Sim World 3 – Master The West Midlands!