Iconic Scots subway trains retire after 44 years as car preserved at Riverside Museum

Glasgow's iconic 1980 Metro-Cammell trains have travelled the city's underground loop for the last time.

The fleet of old-style trains made their final journeys on Friday, driven by two drivers with a combined experience of nearly 70 years, Glasgow Live reports.

It marked the end of an era for the classic orange trains which were introduced to passengers on April 16, 1980, and have journeyed an estimated 2.6 million miles carrying passengers - 400,600 loops of the system.

One of the old Glasgow carriages was moved to the Riverside Museum in Glasgow earlier this month. And local MSP Paul Sweeney says he is "working to save some of the others from the scrapyard".

The city's subway has been gradually phasing out the old trains since December and replacing them with new wheelchair-accessible modern cars. It's part of a £288m upgrade that will feature platform doors and driverless trains in future.

SPT Chair, Councillor Stephen Dornan said: “It is a sad day for the Subway as we say goodbye to this much-loved fleet.

“They have served us well for many decades.

“I know many of the staff, current and retired, and many passengers have been keen to come along over the last couple of weeks for one last loop round the system.

“One of the legacy cars has made its way to the Riverside Museum so there is still an opportunity to view these train and remember it in all its glory.”

Driver Julie Baker, who took one of the trains out for its last spin, said she was trying not to cry as she had been driving it for 35 years. She told the BBC "I'm actually emotional but its time to change," she said.

Stephen Dornan, SPT Chair said: “We are in no doubt as to the importance of these carriages to the transport history of Glasgow, so it is only right and fitting that one should go to Riverside where it can go on display for visitors from the city, and much further afield, to enjoy.

“The legacy fleet has seen many long years of service and some carriages were well beyond their last legs.

“But as we have been working with the museum for some time to discuss the handover, safe transportation, and future preservation of Car 128, we’ve been able to ensure the best train available is being donated to the museum where, hopefully, it will be seen for many more years to come.”

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Speaking of the iconic Subway carriages, John Messner, Curator, Transport and Technology, at Riverside Museum said: “For 44 years Car 128 has been a vital part of the city’s transport infrastructure.

“The new trains became local icons from the moment they were introduced in 1980.

“The ‘Clockwork Orange’ trains – as they quickly were nicknamed – hold fond memories for many Glaswegians as well as visitors to the city, and Glasgow Life Museums are proud to have been able to preserve one of these beloved carriages with the help of the team at SPT.”

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